Friday, April 3, 2015

Th-Th-Th-That's All, Folks! AZ Legislature Wraps Up 2015 Session

Posted By on Fri, Apr 3, 2015 at 9:10 AM

We'll be breaking down the takeaways from the legislative session over the next few days, but Mary Jo Pitzl, Ronald J. Hansen and Yvonne Wingett Sanchez of the Arizona Republic give a wrap-up of the session here:

The Arizona Legislature crept to a middle-of-the-night close to its 2015 session, after a drawn-out final workday sapped the patience of lawmakers, leading to the failure of a pair of key election bills.

The House adjourned sine die at 3:34 a.m. Friday.

But long before the House wrapped up its business, most of the Senate had gone home in exasperation and exhaustion. The senators' departure made moot the House's work on a key GOP bill to severely limit who could return a voter's ballot. The measure needed a final Senate vote.

The demise of Senate 1339 was followed by the failure of a proposed ballot measure that would have asked voters whether to end the state's public campaign-finance system and direct the money that funds the Citizens' Clean Elections Commission to K-12 education instead. The measure, Senate Concurrent Resolution 1001, fell two votes shy of the needed number.

"That was a bumpy end to the session, wasn't it?" House Republican Chief of Staff Tami Stowe said to staffers.

The final hours dragged on, but overall the session set a modern speed record: At 82 days, it was the shortest session in five decades.

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