Daily Archives: June 2, 2009

Arizona governor releases budget proposal

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer has released her FY 2010 budget proposal.  Citing current assessments that show the state’s FY 2010 General Fund budget deficit to be growing and reaching upwards of $4 billion, coupled with the June 30th constitutionally mandated deadline for a balanced budget, Governor Brewer renewed her call for a “truly balanced budget.”

“Arizona’s growing fiscal crisis stands to inflict a devastating impact on our state,” Governor Brewer stated.  “We have a non-negotiable duty to adopt a budget that simultaneously addresses our current fiscal situation, our future economy, based on realistic projections, the immediate needs of our least fortunate adults and children during this grave economic time, and our stewardship role on behalf of future generations of Arizonans.”  To view Governor Brewer’s FY 2010 budget proposal, click here.

Phoenix expo to aid vintage/historic homeowners

[Source: City of Phoenix] — A free Historic Homeowners’ Expo will be offered from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, June 20, at the Hyatt Regency Phoenix, 122 N. Second St. as part of the statewide Historic Preservation Partnership Conference in Phoenix from June 18 to 20.  The expo will offer educational workshops of interest to owners of designated historic homes such as improving energy efficiency; researching an historic home; grants and tax incentives; and how to hire a contractor.

A special demonstration will be given by Continental Steel Windows of Tucson on how to repair steel casement windows.  More than a dozen vendors who provide services to historic homeowners, including craftsmen, contractors, realtors, architects and window providers, will participate in a vendor’s fair.  Attendees will be eligible for raffles and prizes and refreshments will be provided.

For more information and to register, click here or call the city’s Historic Preservation Office at 602-261-8699.

Smaller trains considered for metro Phoenix light rail

[Source: Mike Branom, East Valley Tribune] — Metro light rail believes it has found a solution to its budget woes: Smaller trains running with less frequency.  Facing a $1.3 million deficit in the coming fiscal year, the agency is considering as a cost-cutting measure the occasional use of single-car trains.  Also, Sunday’s schedule would be cut back, with any given station seeing in an hour three trains rather than the current four.

According to Metro, these changes, plus unspecified cuts in administrative costs, will result in an annual savings of $885,000.  Making up the rest of the deficit is the expectation fare revenue will rise in the coming year.  Metro’s Rail Management Committee is scheduled to vote Wednesday on the proposed $33.7 million budget.  If approved, the budget will go before the board of directors later this month.

Since the 20-mile cross-Valley system opened in December, almost all of the trains running use two vehicles, each of which can carry 225 passengers.  During large events, such as President Barack Obama’s appearance at the recent graduation ceremony for Arizona State University, three-car trains are used.  [Note: To read the full article, click here.  To review related East Valley Tribune editorial on merging of mass transit organizations in the Valley, click here.]