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NEW from to YOU: From time to time will be bringing you timely information that you will find both useful and informative. Articles by local experts will focus on health, computer technology, business/tax information and getting along in the world in which we live.

Many people we meet and many patients mention they have or have had carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal Tunnel syndrome (CTS), and many similar conditions, are becoming more and more common. CTS tends to be more frequent among people who do repetitive hand movements and gripping such as typists, factory-line workers, and meat packers, as well as people who perform jobs that involve vibrating equipment, and many others. There is also a predisposition in people with certain forms of arthritis, diabetes, and in pregnant women due in part to fluid retention. Incidence overall is estimated to be three times as high in women compared to men.

CTS is caused by compression or irritation of the median nerve at the wrist. The median nerve supplies muscles that control the thumb as well as sensation to part of the thumb, the pointer and middle finger, and part of the ring finger. The median nerve passes through the carpal tunnel, which is bordered by the bones of the wrist on three sides, and a tendon sheath (called the flexor retinaculum) on the fourth. It also shares the tunnel with the tendons that go to the fingers. The flexor retinaculum is there to keep the tendons contained within the carpal tunnel and helps with wrist stability.

When the median nerve gets compressed, people usually experience pain in the wrist, numbness and/or tingling in the fingers supplied by it, and eventually changes in pinching and grip strength of the hand. Sometimes patients will even experience symptoms up the forearm. Symptoms are usually first noticed at night due to the position of the wrist during sleep. They are often also dismissed because the person assumes it is just from sleeping on their arm. As it progresses, symptoms will become more apparent during the day.

It is important to differentiate whether or not someone has CTS or another problem with numbness or tingling in the hands or arm before attempting to do anything about it. Often people and their doctors assume that because the patient has numbness in some part of their hand or forearm and they type on the computer a lot, that this must be their problem.

However, there are many other disorders and conditions that can be similar. The nerves that supply the hands leave the spine in the lower neck. When one of the nerves gets irritated or pinched it can cause numbness, tingling, or pain down the arm and into the forearm and hand. Additionally, the nerve may be irritated or compressed in some other part of the arm. Certain types of muscle problems also can contribute to pain and symptoms in the forearm and hand.

There are many therapies used to try to treat carpal tunnel syndrome. Often the first step is to use a splint that holds the wrist straight at night, and sometimes while working. There are ergonomic changes that can be made to the keyboard and workspace that can help as well. There seems to be a correlation between inadequate levels of certain B-vitamins, especially B6, and CTS. It is important for patients to take a B-vitamin supplement when undergoing treatment for CTS.

Surgery is a common treatment with mixed results. Research on the subject shows wide differences in success rates of surgery, anywhere from 40% to 98%. Sometimes these outcomes are skewed because workers may not return to the same job or type of activity post-surgery. Steroid injections provide relief; however, it is often temporary and symptoms usually return if no other intervention is used. Chiropractic and other forms of manipulation of the wrist and hand, stretching, traction, massage and acupuncture all have shown success in helping CTS, but more research is needed.

Lifestyle changes are important, including doing certain stretches for the muscles of the hands and forearm, and taking frequent breaks from the offending activity. Some studies suggest that taking “micro breaks” (30 seconds or so every 3-5 minutes) is more effective than taking longer breaks less often.

It is always important to consult a physician who specializes in muscle and joint injury before embarking on any sort of treatment routine. The proper diagnosis is important to choosing the right treatment and, in turn, it’s effectiveness. It is also reasonable to try conservative, non-invasive therapies such as supplementation, manipulation and exercises, or acupuncture first, opting for surgery when conservative interventions fail. It is also important to take these concerns to a healthcare professional as soon as they begin, because they sooner your problem is identified, the more quickly it can be relieved.

Chad Lambert, DC and Christina Lambert, L. Ac practice chiropractic and acupuncture at Alliance Health Center on Honeycutt Rd. here in Maricopa. They can be reached at (520) 568-4494.

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Tuesday afternoon the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office arrested a male employee of the Pinal County Recorder’s Office. The man was arrested on charges of theft and identity theft. He was booked into Pinal County’s Adult Detention facility and is being held on $25,000 bond.

“My office and my staff are cooperating fully with this investigation,” County Recorder Laura Dean-Lytle said.

The arrest follows a citizen complaint about possible identity theft or forgery.

The subject of the investigation is linked to the daughter of County Recorder Laura Dean-Lytle.

“As an elected official, I place the public trust ahead of family matters. I have pledged my full and complete cooperation to authorities. Crimes, if they were committed, will not be tolerated,” Dean-Lytle said.

The County Attorney’s office will be referring the case to another prosecutor’s office to avoid any questions as to the impartiality of the prosecution.

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The Phoenix Business Journal and BestCompaniesAZ, co-founders of the “Best Places to Work” list, announced last week that Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino Resort has been named to the 2008 list in the large-sized category.

The “Best Places to Work” list, which was started in 2003, recognizes Valley companies who, through a third party administered employee survey, rank their respective companies as being the best places to work. The areas surveyed are varied parts of employee life, including workplace environment, leadership direction, culture and management practices.

Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino was acknowledged for creating an enjoyable corporate culture and work environment that fosters personal and professional growth for its employees. “We are excited to rank # 2 on the “Best Place to Work” in the Valley list this year. Making the list is truly an honor that undoubtedly provides all of our employees with a sense of pride,” said Geoff Andres, VP and General Manager.

Winners were announced at the “Best Places to Work” Luncheon, Dec.11 at the Arizona Biltmore, and they will be featured on an exclusive website for only valley “Best Places to Work” – For complete details visit

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At two years old Roscoe’s prospects were not looking good. Classified a “bite dog,” shelter workers had given Roscoe a death sentence. Reagan was labeled “food aggressive” and also scheduled for death. No one had the time to see that Reagan and Roscoe were terrified by the noise and confusion that surrounded them.

The product of a puppy mill, one-year-old Nigel had such severe hip dysplasia he spent his time sitting or lying down. Nigel had little to no chance at adoption. Bonus was a Golden Retriever whose sole purpose in life was to have more Golden Retrievers. Kept in a pen in her owner’s backyard, Bonus didn’t know what it meant to play and run. For five years, Molly loved and protected her human family until they had to move and leave her behind. Overweight and with a thyroid problem, Molly desperately needed a new family to love and protect.

Golden Retrievers are often called the “family dog” because of their sunny dispositions, their desire to please and their love of all things human. They are the cutest of puppies and the most beautiful of dogs, and they are all too often neglected and abandoned.

That’s why rescue organizations like Arizona Golden Retriever Connection (AZGRC) are so important to the community. AZGRC is comprised of volunteers who perform the hundreds of tasks involved in rescuing Goldens, foster families who open their homes to dogs awaiting adoption, veterinarians who provide medical treatment and services and individuals and families who adopt rescued Goldens and give them a second chance at happiness.

One of the major fundraisers for Arizona Golden Retriever Connection is their annual calendar. The theme for the 2009 calendar is “The Best of Friends,” and it pays tribute to the unique bond that develops between Golden Retrievers who have been cast aside and the humans who rescue them. Like, Roscoe, Regan, Nigel, Bonus, and Molly, all the Goldens featured in the calendar at one time faced an uncertain future and were all rescued by AZGRC. The calendar costs $10 and 98 percent of the sales go directly to rescuing these wonderful dogs. There are a number of locations throughout the area where calendars are sold. To find a location near you, to learn more about Arizona Golden Retriever Connection and their rescued Goldens or to order a calendar online, go to

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On Dec. 9, 2008, a Region 1 Pinal County Sheriff’s Office deputy conducted a routine traffic stop on a vehicle on State Route 347, north of Highway 84, in Maricopa.

During the traffic stop, the deputy, recently recognized for self-initiation on traffic stops, conducted a consent search of the vehicle. During the search, the deputy observed several bundles of money hidden behind a seat in the vehicle. The PCSO K-9 Unit was then called to assist.

When the K-9 Unit arrived, the officer initiated his K-9 to perform a sniff of the vehicle, during which the K-9 gave a positive alert to the presence of narcotics where the money had been located.

The two occupants of the vehicle, Edgar Felix-Valencia, 21, of Stanfield, and Ivan Felix, 28, of Maricopa, were placed under arrest and several bundles of money were confiscated from the vehicle. Deputies contacted the Pinal County Narcotics Task Force and investigators responded to assist.

After PCNTF investigators conducted interviews and follow up, Felix-Valencia was booked into Pinal County Adult Detention Center on charges of money laundering, and Felix was released with no criminal charges.

The money, later determined to be $228,569, was seized by the Sheriff’s Office.

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Lately, with the economic slowdown and recent local business closings, success stories are few and far between.

However, one Maricopa business, HairFocus, which is located in the Maricopa Business Center, reports strong November sales.

Compared to November 2007, HairFocus had an increase of 10 percent in overall sales for November 2008–their best month ever. The first 11 months of 2008, ending Nov.30, were 13 percent over the first 11 months of 2007.

HairFocus attributes their success to quality customer service, community involvement and consistent advertising, including landlord-sponsored advertising.

Owners, Karen and Dick Crew, along with their stylist and esthetician, wish to thank the community of Maricopa for their business.

Business details:

Name: HairFocus, LLC
Location: 44400 W Honeycutt Road, #111
Phone: (520) 568-6962

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NEW from to YOU: From time to time will be bringing you timely information that you will find both useful and informative. Articles by local experts will focus on health, computer technology, business/tax information and getting along in the world in which we live.

On July 30, 2008, President Bush signed into law the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 with several significant changes. One of these changes was the First Time Homebuyer Credit.

This credit, as it is called, is actually an interest free loan from the Federal Government. A first time homebuyer if married, filing jointly, can get a credit equal to the lesser of $7,500 or 10% of the purchase price of a principal resident. The credit must be paid back over a 15-year period, beginning two years after the credit was taken. The repayment is preformed through your tax return and not a direct payment. The credit phases out with married filing joint returns with modified adjusted gross income between $150,000 and $170,000 for the year of purchase.

Who qualifies as a first time homebuyer?

A taxpayer is considered a first time homebuyer if the taxpayer had no ownership interest in a principal residence in the United States during the three year period prior to the purchase of the new home.

Who is disqualified as a first time homebuyer?

There are several cases in which someone may be disqualified as a first time homebuyer:

1. Home financing is from tax-exempt mortgage revenue bonds.
2. Homebuyer is a nonresident alien.
3. Homebuyer disposes of the residence
4. The residence stops being the principal residence before the end of the tax year for which the credit would apply
5. Others items of disqualification apply to Washington DC

There are exceptions to repayment of the credit and who must repay the credit upon separation or divorce. Please contact your tax professional regarding additional information for First Time Homebuyer Credit.

Information has been extracted from Tax Tips received from Western CPE and submitted by Myron Trafelet, CPA of Trafelet Accounting PLLC, 19756 N John Wayne Parkway, Suite 109, Maricopa, AZ 85239. Email:

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The First Baptist Church of Maricopa is proud to present their annual Christmas Cantata Celebration entitled “Let There Be Light” on Sunday evening, Dec. 14 at 6 p.m.

The Worship Choir will sing songs celebrating Jesus Christ’s birth and honoring this joyful season.

Everyone is invited to enjoy the performance at First Baptist Church of Maricopa. The church is located south on John Wayne Parkway directly past the railroad tracks and on the left just before the second traffic signal.

“We look forward to meeting you soon,” said church member Patricia Ward.

For additional information call (520) 568-2272.

Photo courtesy of First Baptist Church

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The MLS report for the month of November shows 127 home sales in the 85238 and 85239 zip code areas.

The low sale price was $70,000, and the highest price paid was $320,000. The mean price for a home in November was $115,000.

$70,000-46072 W Dutchman Dr
$76,100-18808 N Toledo Ave
$79,900-53909 W Terra Dr
$80,000-44264 W Caven Dr
$82,000-18366 N Daisy Dr
$82,500-44851 W Desert Garden Rd
$84,500-43694 W Wade Dr
$84,900-36350 W El Greco St
$85,000-43306 W Blazen Trl
$86,000-46038 W Windmill Dr
$86,100-45531 W Starlight Dr
$87,000-44876 W Balboa Dr
$89,000-45663 W Dutchman Dr
$89,900-44880 W Sage Brush Dr
$90,000-45120 W Portabello Rd
$91,000-41920 W Sunland Dr
$91,900-42367 W Colby Dr
$92,000-43922 W Carey Dr
$92,500-45101 W Balboa Ln
$92,900-45475 W Amsterdam Rd
$92,900-44398 W Cypress Ln
$93,000-45625 W Guilder Ave
$93,500-43487 W Bedford Dr
$95,000-43697 W Bedford Dr
$95,000-41664 W Somerset Dr
$96,200-45672 W Sheridan Rd
$98,000-45437 W Portabello Rd
$98,940-43404 W Cowpath Rd
$99,900-42268 W Oakland Dr
$100,000-44295 W Caven Dr
$100,000-22643 N Davis Way
$101,000-41839 W Anne Ln
$102,000-45113 W Yucca Ln
$102,900-45593 W Windmill Dr
$103,000-21345 N Scott Dr
$103,500-44326 W Caven Dr
$105,000-45541 W Sheridan Rd
$105,900-45343 W Buckhorn Trl
$106,011-35680 W Velazquez Dr
$107,000-42258 W Lunar St
$107,000-41958 W Sparks Ct
$108,900-45346 W Woody Rd
$109,900-45735 W Dirk St
$109,900-18881 N Vemto St
$109,990-42353 W Mira Ct
$110,000-45990 W Tulip Ln
$110,050-43728 W Cahill Dr
$111,000-22469 N Van Der Veen Way
$111,990-40357 N Peggy Ct, Lot 80
$113,000-45128 W Balboa Dr
$113,000-42271 W Anne Ln
$114,990-40357 N Peggy Ct, Lot 37
$115,000-22771 N Ware Dr
$115,000-44431 W McClelland Dr
$115,500-45686 W Dutchman Dr
$119,691-36563 W Barcelona Ln
$119,900-46045 W Barbara Ln
$119,900-44430 W Neely Dr
$119,900-44263 W Neely Dr
$119,900-18663 N Miller Way
$119,900-42829 W Magnolia Rd
$120,000-44115 W Knauss Dr
$120,000-20725 N Bustos Way
$120,000-43716 W Arizona Ave
$122,900-45529 W Tucker Rd
$125,000-43558 W Kramer Ln
$125,000-43337 W Hillman Dr
$125,900-45176 W Miraflores St
$127,900-44333 W Palmen Dr
$129,375-41919 W Colby Dr
$129,900-45090 W Gavilan Dr
$129,900-44253 W Venture Ln
$130,000-44439 W Oster Dr
$130,000-44245 W Roth Rd
$130,000-43531 W Oster Dr
$132,500-35895 W Madrid Ave
$135,000-43429 W Sansom Dr
$135,000-42098 W Hillman Dr
$135,000-45580 W Barbara Ln
$135,600-41651 W Warren Ln
$136,600-18257 N Madison Rd
$139,032-41355 W Bravo Dr
$139,900-22607 N Van Loo Dr
$141,000-44870 W Jack Rabbit Trl
$141,000-22233 N Dietz Dr
$144,780-42828 W Venture Rd
$144,900-18838 N Roosevelt Ave
$144,900-42454 W Palmyra Ln
$144,900-21361 N Sunset Dr
$145,000-46049 W Ranch Rd
$145,000-21709 N Dietz Dr
$146,000-41909 W Colby Dr
$146,700-43411 W Neely Dr
$149,000-43248 W Oakland Ct
$149,900-43672 W Knauss Dr
$150,000-18934 N Roosevelt Ave
$155,000-42534 W Oakland Dr
$155,000-45305 W Horse Mesa Rd
$155,006-44370 W Yucca Ln
$156,000-22330 N Reis Dr
$159,900-22461 N Agave Rd
$159,900-45150 W Rhea Rd
$160,000-43811 W Roth Rd
$161,000-41801 W Chambers Ct
$163,900-43227 W Kimberly St
$165,000-43304 W Askew Dr
$168,990-40304 W Lococo St, Lot 19
$169,90044368 W Eddie Way
$171,900-22693 N Sunset Dr
$175,000-43298 W Estrada St
$177,500-43915 W Adobe Cir
$178,000-41812 W Little Ct
$179,900-43504 W Sunland Dr
$181,000-22697 N Gibson Dr
$182,000-20207 N Ryans Trl
$183,155-37231 W Giallo Ln
$185,000-21802 N Allen Ct
$185,150-35794 W Marin Ave
$190,000-44423 W Yucca Ln
$190,900-19856 N Harris Dr
$192,500-45344 W Juniper Ave
$217,750-44555 W Garden Ln
$220,000-21775 N Greenway Dr
$240,000-41882 W Capistrano Dr
$250,000-43351 W McClelland Dr
$286,900-42273 W Good Vibrations Ln
$320,000-54204 W Deborah Dr

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A Mexican citizen is facing felony charges for illegally re-entering the United States after a prior deportation following his arrest by a Pinal County sheriff’s detective authorized to enforce federal immigration laws.

On Nov.24, PCSO Detective Mark Guemes arrested Fernando Magallenez-Orona, 26, on state charges related to suspected drug dealing in Casa Grande, Ariz. Guemes, who has been designated with the authority to enforce federal immigration laws by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), determined that Magallenez was an illegal alien from Mexico who had been formally removed from the United States. Magallenez has two prior felony convictions for possession of drug paraphernalia.

On Nov. 26, Detective Guemes presented Magallenez for federal prosecution in the United States District Court, District of Arizona, for being a criminal alien who illegally re-entered the U.S. after having been ordered removed. If convicted, Magallenez could face up to 10 years in prison on the federal charges. An individual is presumed innocent until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

“Protecting our communities from criminal aliens is one of the cornerstones of the 287(g) program,” said Special Agent in Charge Matt Allen, head of ICE’s Office of Investigations in Arizona, in reference to the program granting immigration authority to the county’s deputies. “This arrest and potential conviction sends a strong message to criminal illegal aliens: If they come back here after deportation, they will be facing some hard time when they are arrested again.”

Pinal County Sheriff Chris Vasquez reached an agreement in March 2008 with ICE to provide immigration authority to sheriff’s deputies under the 287(g) program. The 287(g) program permits state and local law enforcement agencies’ designated officers to perform immigration law enforcement functions, pursuant to a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), provided that the local law enforcement officers receive appropriate training and function under the supervision of ICE.

The program enables deputies to determine the immigration status of those encountered during the normal course of duties and to initiate removal proceedings for those found to be in the country illegally. Jail enforcement officers are able to interview foreign national inmates in the county’s correctional facilities to determine whether there is probable cause for an immigration violation.

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Recently the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office recovered two stolen trailers full of items.

The trailers were returned to their owners; however, the items inside were found not to belong to the trailers’ owners and are now housed at PCSO as recovered stolen

Photos of the items can be viewed at the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office “Found Property” Web site:

The sheriff’s office is hoping that area residents will check these recovered items so they can be returned to the rightful owners.

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Accelerate the Arts, LLC, and the Golden Corridor Center for the Arts (GCCA), Inc., with the string orchestras from Maricopa High School, Desert Winds Middle School, Maricopa Wells Middle School, Oasis Life Center Performing Arts, St. Anthony of Padua Catholic School and the Golden Corridor Center’s youth and adults, present Pinal County’s ‘Strings Spectacular’ winter concert.

The concert will be Tuesday, Dec.16, 2008 at 6 p.m. at Maricopa Wells Middle School. Admission is free.

Kim Calderone is the owner of Accelerate the Arts, LLC, Maricopa’s own mobile music store. Through Accelerate the Arts, Calderone provides an avenue for children and adults to experience the artistic world with local musicians and artists passionate about sharing their talents. She also volunteers her time in Maricopa and Casa Grande schools. Accelerate the Arts currently provides classes, private lessons, instrument rentals, ensembles and performance in Maricopa and surrounding areas. It has partnered with the Golden Corridor Center to promote string education through performance and instruction.

The Golden Corridor Center for the Arts is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to providing Pinal County musical and cultural experiences and life-enriching opportunities through the performing arts.

Located in Casa Grande, the Golden Corridor focuses primarily on community orchestras for youth and adults. Instructors are degreed professionals with many years of performance and teaching experience. Participants come from all over Pinal County to play and be a part of something that will enhance and promote the arts through their efforts.

As a collaborative effort both the Golden Corridor and Accelerate the Arts have combined talent, resources and passion. Both organizations are always looking for string players who enjoy discovering the joy of making music.

For information about Accelerate the Arts, LLC., contact Kim Calderone at (520) 280-2794 or at

For information about The Golden Corridor Center for the Arts, Inc., contact Maureen Berger at (520) 421-0911 or at

If you go:

What: ‘Strings Spectacular’ Winter Concert
When: Tuesday, Dec. 16 at 6 p.m.
Where: Maricopa Wells Middle School, 45012 W. Honeycutt Avenue
Cost: Free admission

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Humans can discern about 10,000 smells.

Remember Cleopatra? She placed layers of rose petals on her palace floors to entice Mark Antony. She knew the power of scent and got that part right, but according to recent studies, the scents that most attract men are pumpkin pie and anise. Well, she didn’t have our science or pumpkin pie.

Retailers have been enticing prospects to buy their goods with hundreds of scents for thousands of years. Scent has a power of its own.

We instinctively know that the power of scent can be good or bad. Strong smells from pets, cooking or other activities can make prospects run from buying a home. But the right, clean scent can have quite the opposite effect.

Scent Suggestions:

Let’s say you are selling an updated, contemporary home in an urban neighborhood where younger singles and newlyweds are buying. You may decide you don’t want these prospects to be highly relaxed, but rather attentive and excited instead. This will help them make decisions more quickly. In this case, use scents of rosemary, peppermint or grapefruit for alertness and stimulation.

If you want to enhance the mood of an older home with many rooms that may invoke a bit of uneasiness or confusion, use any citrus scent. Citrus is refreshing and energizing, eases tension and promotes mental clarity. Or use lavender to promote calming.

Some scents and their reactions:

-Chamomile: calming and soothing-eases anger and anxiety
-Clary Sage: relaxing, euphoric-eases anxiety, tension and stress
-Eucalyptus: fresh, cooling and invigorating-promotes alertness
-Jasmine: alleviates anxiety and depression
-Lavender: calming
-Lemon: refreshing and energizing-eases tension, heightens mental clarity
-Mandarin: relaxing and calming-relieves insomnia
-Neroli/Orange Blossom: relieves stress, anxiety and insomnia
-Peppermint: refreshing and stimulating-increases alertness
-Rosemary: a stimulant that promotes mental clarity and alertness
-Sandalwood: warm, sensual aroma-euphoric and seductive

Remove stale smells and scent your home properly prior to showing it to prospective buyers. After all, scent has a power of its own.

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NEW from to YOU: From time to time will be bringing you timely information that you will find both useful and informative. Articles by local experts will focus on health, computer technology, business/tax information and getting along in the world in which we live.

Time Requirements:

One of the most overlooked issues when considering a new small business venture is the amount of time required to operate a small business. When considering creating a small business, an individual needs to consider the hours of operation, hours of preparation, hours after closing and the hours necessary for record keeping.

The hours are different for different types of businesses. If your business is a service business, the hours of preparation and after closing are greatly reduced. If your business is a food service business, these hours are increased. One of the reasons for small businesses closing is owner burnout. This is due to underestimating time requirements necessary to operate the business and not being able to afford a manager to relieve you some of this time.

Setting up the proper business entity:

In many cases an individual will start a business without considering or consulting with a professional about the appropriate entity that should be established for the type of business being started. Questions need to be asked as to types of entities available, whether to create a sole proprietorship, a pass through entity (Partnership, LLC or an S-Corporation), or a taxable entity (C Corporation). This decision should be made very early in the process with the assistance of your tax and business consultant. The correct, timely decision can help the initial process go smoothly, reduce stress and save you money.

Keeping accurate records from day one:

Accounting records should be maintained from the very beginning of the process. Most small businesses look at the maintenance of accounting records as an afterthought and wait until it is time to prepare the year-end tax return before they begin gathering the information, and in many cases information is missed. Missing these deductions may cost you more than the costs to maintain the records from the beginning would be. These records can be maintained in many ways, either by the creator of the business or by a professional.

Understanding Available Financial Information:

Once accurate financial information is available, it is very important that this information be reviewed and understood by the business owner. This information will show trends for the business as to sales and cost of sales, which are key to running a profitable business.

Understanding Small Business Tax Issues:

It is very important to understand the various tax issues that confront small businesses: income tax, self-employment taxes, sales or TPT tax and payroll taxes. The sales and payroll taxes seem to be the most troublesome. These taxes are normally paid monthly and, if not paid on time, have significant penalties on them. Payroll taxes that are not paid on time have a 10 percent penalty for the quarter; if it’s the first time, contacting the IRS and explaining the issue then following with a letter may waive the penalty.

If you are considering starting a small business, or have any questions, please contact me at or visit my office, Trafelet Accounting PLLC, 19756 N John Wayne Parkway, Suite 109, Maricopa, AZ 85239.

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The MLS report for the month of October shows 162 home sales in the 85238 and 85239 zip code areas.

The low sale price was $82,000, and the highest price paid was $250,000. The mean price for a home in October was $132,800.

Addresses of the homes and the price paid:

42274 W VENTURE RD $82,000
45726 W SHERIDAN RD $82,500
45705 W LONG WAY $84,900
36605 W ALHAMBRA ST $85,000
22447 N BISHOP DR $87,900
44857 W BALBOA DR $89,900
21298 N Robins DR $90,000
44548 W Windrose DR $92,500
19028 N Toledo AVE $93,000
41640 W Hillman DR $94,900
45490 W TULIP LN $95,000
18229 N DAISY DR $95,000
46067 W Guilder AVE $95,900
19928 N Toledo AVE $99,000
43927 W Cahill DR $99,000
42778 W HILLMAN CT $99,900
42322 W Oakland DR $100,000
21447 N ROBBINS DR $100,000
45947 W BARBARA LN $101,900
43298 W Blazen Trail $102,000
43697 W Sagebrush TRL $103,000
45691 W WINDMILL DR $104,500
42294 W BUNKER DR $105,000
43918 W KRAMER LN $105,000
36429 W ALHAMBRA ST $105,000
42003 W HILLMAN DR $105,000
44395 W Cypress LN $105,900
44740 W DESERT GARDEN RD $107,500
45993 W Sonny RD $107,625
20743 N MARQUEZ DR $109,000
17426 N Cozumel AVE $109,690
43859 W ROTH RD $109,900
18950 N SMITH DR $109,900
43668 W ELM DR $109,900
42366 W Chambers DR $110,000
43749 W Magnolia RD $110,000
45974 W BARBARA LN $112,500
36641 W Montserrat ST $113,392
44528 W CYPRESS LN $114,000
43840 W GRIFFIS DR $114,000
40141 W Hayden DR $114,899
18829 N Roosevelt AVE $115,000
45331 W APPLEGATE RD $115,000
44222 W RHINESTONE RD $115,000
43528 W Colby DR $115,000
43256 W ARIZONA AVE $115,000
22638 N Davis WAY $115,500
36524 W EL GRECO ST $115,700
43981 W COWPATH RD $116,000
44205 W BUCKHORN TRL $116,303
36479 W EL GRECO ST $117,000
45417 W Horse Mesa RD $117,500
43888 W ELIZABETH AVE $117,500
44612 W Yucca LN $118,000
6967 N DEER TRL $118,000
43627 W Blazen TRL $118,000
46186 W HOLLY DR $118,000
44994 W BUCKHORN TRL $118,900
37123 W AMALFI AVE $119,746
44169 W OSTER DR $119,900
18663 N MILLER WAY $119,900
22426 N GREENLAND PARK DR $120,000
45990 W AMSTERDAM RD $120,000
46014 W TUCKER RD $120,000
36452 W VELAZQUEZ DR $120,000
45528 W TUCKER RD $123,000
20652 N ALMA DR $123,000
43464 W SUNLAND DR $123,200
43613 W Arizona AVE $124,900
45354 W Zion RD $124,900
21335 N SUNSET DR $125,000
43325 W BLAZEN TRL $125,000
35907 W Merced ST $125,080
43671 W Oster DR $126,000
17287 N Rosa DR $126,806
42240 W Bunker DR $128,000
45658 W Sheridan RD $129,900
45667 W TUCKER RD $130,000
45721 W GUILDER AVE $130,000
44809 W APPLEGATE RD $130,300
44149 W GARDEN LN $132,800
44020 W YUCCA LN $133,000
22013 N DIETZ DR $143,000
44544 W SANTA FE AVE $143,000
36574 W COSTA BLANCA DR $144,000
43241 W ESTRADA ST $147,472.25
41296 W CAPISTRANO DR $147,990
43337 W Griffis DR $148,000
45402 W Rhea RD $148,900
16986 N Palo Verde ST $149,895
44001 W GARDEN LN $149,978
21265 N VAN LOO DR $150,000
22314 N CAVEN DR $150,000
42383 W COLBY DR $150,000
44213 W Canyon Creek DR $152,000
45654 W MEADOWS LN $154,950
43843 W ASKEW DR $155,000
43482 W SUNLAND DR $155,000
21757 N CELTIC AVE $155,000
41781 W CHAMBERS CT $155,000
18613 N MILLER WAY $155,000
35898 W MARIN AVE $156,000
20824 N CARMEN AVE $157,500
43520 W ELIZABETH AVE $160,000
18486 N JAMESON DR $160,990
46142 W AMSTERDAM RD $163,000
21117 N Danielle AVE $163,136
44348 W WINDROSE DR $165,000
43644 W Courtney DR $168,000
41223 W Hayden DR $168,433
40345 W Lococo ST Lot 5 $168,990
22380 N Vargas DR $170,000
42338 W Posada DR $170,777
18217 N LARKSPUR DR $172,000
40894 W Robbins DR $174,023
21739 N CELTIC AVE $174,900
35864 W Catalan ST $174,900
22061 N Celtic AVE $175,000
43373 W SUNLAND DR $175,000
21770 N GREENLAND PARK DR $179,000
43884 W GRIFFIS DR $180,000
43466 W SNOW DR $180,000
42462 W Falling Star DR $180,000
45098 W NORRIS RD $185,000
44370 W Mescal ST $185,000
43475 W Kimberly ST $185,000
43895 W GRIFFIS DR $185,000
35881 W Catalan ST $187,700
43489 W CYDNEE DR $189,000
35936 W Cartegna LN $189,500
20262 N JONES DR $190,000
44650 W REDROCK RD $190,000
44573 W Granite DR $194,250
43448 W ASKEW DR $195,000
43969 W PALO ABETO DR $198,900
18955 N FALCON LN $200,000
20178 N MADISON DR $205,000
19134 N Arbor DR $208,696
44574 W Garden LN $210,000
18370 N LARIAT RD $219,940
42441 W Heavenly PL $225,000
42496 W NORTH STAR DR $225,000
44522 W Rhinestone RD $230,414
22386 N Sunset DR $250,000

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During October there are numerous events that support Breast Cancer Awareness Month, such as the Race for the Cure, pink ribbon sales at various local marketplaces and awareness literature that is distributed throughout the country.

The Professional Firefighters of Maricopa, Local 4561, and the Maricopa Fire Department wanted to show their support for this worthy cause so, during the month of October, members of the fire department were allowed to purchase and wear an alternative uniform shirt that was pink with blue printing, as opposed to their traditional blue and white duty shirts.

The point of these shirts was to show families, friends and loved ones of those affected by breast cancer that fire fighters were thinking of them. Several members of the Maricopa Fire Department have grandmothers, mothers, sisters and other family members and friends that have either lost the fight or are survivors of breast cancer.

Breast cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in women between the ages of 15 and 54, and the second cause of cancer deaths in women 55 to 74. Breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in women and the second leading cause of cancer death in women, after lung cancer.

The Professional Firefighters of Maricopa would like to offer some helpful tips they share with those closest to them:

Who gets breast cancer?

Anyone can get breast cancer. For example, did you know:
· The older a woman is, the more likely she is to get breast cancer?
· White women are more likely to get breast cancer than women of any other racial or ethnic group? They also have a better chance of survival, primarily because their cancer is usually detected earlier.
· African-American women are more likely to die from breast cancer than white women.
· Men can get breast cancer, too, although it is rare. Less than one of every 100 cases of breast cancer in the U.S. occurs in men.
· In 2006, it was estimated that men would account for 1,720 cases of breast cancer.1

What is your best defense?

The best way to find breast cancer in its earliest stages is to routinely check your breasts for signs and symptoms of the disease.

There are three basic methods:

Mammograms are X-ray pictures of the breast. They can find breast cancer in its earliest stages, even before a lump can be felt. All women 40 and older should have a mammogram every year. If you are younger than 40 with either a family history of breast cancer or other concerns, talk with your health care provider about when to start getting
mammograms and how often to have them.

Clinical breast exam is performed by a health care provider who carefully checks your breasts and underarm areas for any lumps or changes that may be present. Many women have a clinical breast exam performed when they get their Pap test. Women should have a clinical breast exam at least every three years between the ages of 20 and 39 and
every year starting at 40.

Breast self-exam (BSE) involves two main steps, looking at and feeling your breasts for any change from normal. If you notice any change in the normal look or feel of your breasts, see your health care provider. All women should perform monthly BSE by age 20. BSE should be done once a month, a few days after your period ends. If you no longer have periods, do BSE on the same day each month. At your next appointment, ask your health care provider to show you the steps for BSE.

(For step-by-step BSE instructions, go to or call 1-800-462-9273 to request a free BSE card.)

1 American Cancer Society, Cancer Facts & Figures 2006.

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Maricopa Little League is now accepting registrations for baseball and softball players ages 7 to 14 (minors/majors/juniors) from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays at Pacana Park (except holiday weekends) until Jan. 24.

There are still a few spots left to fill on the t-ball and machine pitch teams, as well, which need to be filled by this weekend (Dec.13).

Three forms of proof of residency and a copy of a birth certificate are required for proper registration. Final registrations will be taken the morning of Jan. 24 at tryouts, which must be attended that day.

For more information call (520) 560-6017, send email to or visit

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NEW from to YOU: From time to time will be bringing you timely information that you will find both useful and informative. Articles by local experts will focus on health, computer technology, business/tax information and getting along in the world in which we live.

A new law signed by President Bush in August 2006 tightened the requirements for a taxpayer to substantiate the deduction taken on your form 1040, schedule A.

With the signing of the Pension Protection Act of 2006, effective for contributions made after Aug. 17, 2006, no deduction will be allowed for contributions of cash, check or other monetary gifts, regardless of the amount, unless the donor maintains one of the following records indicating the donee’s name and contribution date and amount:

1. A bank record
2. A receipt, letter or other written communication from the donee

This new law will have an effect on the deductibility of the taxpayer’s out of pocket contributions.

The ways to ensure the deductibility of your charitable contributions and substantiate your contributions are as follows.

1. Pay contributions by check
2. Pay contributions by credit card
3. Carry a receipt book with you and have donee sign the receipt for the amount of the contribution; most organizations are prepared to sign a receipt for the receipt of cash.
4. Have charitable contributions withheld for your pay and submitted by your employer; if your employer will allow this, your pay stub or W-2 showing the deduction will substantiate the deduction.

For non-cash donations of clothing or household items, effective Aug. 17, 2006, a new phrase has been added to the requirement, “in good used condition or better.” All donations must meet these conditions, or no deduction will be allowed. To claim a non-cash deduction of more than $500, a form 8283 must be attached to the tax return, and the taxpayer must keep the same record as required for cash contributions of less than $250.

For further information regarding the deductibility of charitable contributions, contact your tax preparer.

Myron Trafelet of Trafelet Accounting Group in Maricopa offers accounting and tax preparation services to both individuals and businesses, as well as small business consulting and accounting. To contact him, call (520) 316-6080 or visit his Web site.

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Orbitel Communications was at Santa Rosa Elementary School Friday, visiting Kathy Young’s class.

Marketing Director Laura Lane and lead Customer Service Rep Crystal Kanouse hosted a pizza party for the fourth graders.

Young’s class won this season’s Box Tops for Education competition, bringing in a total of 599 box tops. The national program allows schools to participate and generate funds that go back into their schools.

Santa Rosa students collect box tops from General Mills cereal boxes, Ziploc bags, Kleenex tissues and other participating brands in the fall and spring of each school year. The class that brings in the most box tops wins a prize. Each box top is worth 10 cents, and some box tops offer bonus points.

Santa Rosa Elementary raised a total of 6,674 Box Tops, equaling $667, which they will use for field trips and any items that teachers may need in their classrooms.

“The kids were so excited today. What a wonderful program to be able to work together as a team and give back to your school,” said Lane, Marketing Director for Orbitel Communications. “We are proud to be in our fourth year of sponsorship of the program and would love to see it grow Maricopa-wide in 2009. Congratulations to Mrs. Young’s class.”

Photos courtesy of Laura Lane

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The 3,355-recorded Pinal County resale transactions in third quarter 2008 included 1,515 foreclosures or 45 percent of the resale activity. For the second quarter, there were 845 foreclosures of the 2,100-recorded transactions or 40 percent.

Although recorded foreclosure activity slowed in the second quarter, it still represented a dominant segment, making up a 50 percent share in Maricopa and a 46 percent share in Queen Creek. Maricopa County reported 23,950-recorded sales in the third quarter with foreclosure activity representing 44 percent of the recordings.

In Pinal County there is a wide range of homes available from new homes to foreclosures, but the common factor has been the rapidly declining prices, according to Jay Butler, director of Realty Studies in the Morrison School of Management and Agribusiness at Arizona State University Polytechnic.

“Homeowners and investors are buying with the expectation of strong appreciation in the future,” Butler said.

For all transactions, the median price has steadily eroded from $220,000 in fourth quarter 2005 to $143,100 in second quarter 2008, to $129,200 for the current quarter. The foreclosure median price was $135,240, while the traditional transaction was $129,200. The median home price in Pinal County was 71 percent of the median price in Maricopa County ($175,000).

Although the thirty-year mortgage remained stable at 6.3 percent, a lower home price drove the monthly mortgage payment for the median price, based on an 85 percent loan-to-value, to decrease from $1,005 to $680. It would be $920 for the median priced home in Maricopa County.

“Although affordability has improved, higher gasoline prices, more congested highways and limited employment opportunities continue to strongly hamper any potential recovery of the housing market in Pinal County,” said Butler.

In order to reduce inventories, new home builders are still aggressively pursuing buyers through incentives such as specially priced up-grades, free pools and gift cards. The new home has become a strong competitive and attractive alternative to the resale home in Pinal County. New home sales were 2,115 homes with a median price of $161,090, in contrast to last year’s 2,645 sales and median price of $196,180.

The median square footage for a resale home in Pinal County was 1,835 square feet, while it was 1,710 square feet in Maricopa County.

First quarter 2008 home sales:
310 homes sold (median price $170,000)
135 traditional sales (median price $164,000)
175 foreclosures sold (median price $174,250)

Second quarter 2008 home sales:
310 homes sold (median price $157,000)
160 traditional sales (median price $150,900)
150 foreclosures sold (median price $167,900)

Third quarter 2008 home sales:
770 homes sold (median price $136,170)
385 traditional sales (median price $130,000)
385 foreclosures sold (median price $152,440)

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Board of Supervisors Chairman David Snider will hold his monthly office hours in Maricopa on Thursday, Nov. 6 from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m.

“Although I’m normally here on the first Tuesday of the month, due to the election day excitement, I’ll be in Maricopa on Thursday, Nov. 6th, instead of the 4th,” Chairman Snider explained. “I think it will give people a chance to relax, recover from the excitement of the big day and digest the election results.”

Chairman Snider will be at the Interim Maricopa City Hall located at 45145 W. Madison Avenue. If anyone would like to schedule a time to visit during his office hours in Maricopa, you can call his office at 836-0003 – otherwise it is first come, first served.

“There, of course, is a lot to discuss,” Chairman Snider said, “from the upcoming public forums on our Comprehensive Plan to the election results. I’ll be ready to answer your questions and talk about your concerns.”

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The Maricopa High School girls basketball team finished the season with a 25-point win over the Florence Gophers Feb. 5 with a score of 51-26.

Brittany Parks scored 19 for the Rams on an evening in which Coach Jenn Miller said the girls were really hustling.

“They were diving for loose balls, pressuring the guards, and running the court for easy lay-ups,” Miller said.

But despite the big win, the Rams were still eliminated from a playoff spot.

Miller said she expects great things next year because most of the team will be able to return. Before the game, the Rams said goodbye to their two graduating seniors, Brinjel Motley and Camerina Panez.

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    The city of Maricopa will be holding a public hearing to solicit feedback regarding the allocation of Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds at the City Council meeting Wednesday. The meeting, originally scheduled for Tuesday, has been postponed one day due to the General Election.

    “Public input is invaluable in determining the projects for the grant,” said Grants Manager Mary Witkofski. “City Council determines the projects, which benefit low to moderate income people throughout the city, for funding through public participation. Citizen input drives the allocation of these funds.”

    Additional citizen input is being sought regarding the interior design of Maricopa’s new library. Initial drawings of the facility will be available prior to the council meeting from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Global Water center. Representatives from the design firm will be in attendance to answer questions, as will Community Services Director Marty McDonald.

    Council’s work session will be a budget performance presentation by Budget Manager Corrine Wilcox-Cornn, who will review the previous fiscal year’s performance and this year’s first quarter performance.

    Other regular meeting agenda items include a grant acceptance for funding the salary of the City Transit Coordinator, authorization for the annual Shop Maricopa event and a possible contract for the design of a future public works yard.

    In addition, council members will discuss a contract and the funding for three traffic signals at the following intersections: Honeycutt and Maricopa Groves, Smith Enke and Santa Cruz, and Porter and Honeycutt Roads.

    Click here for complete agenda.

    IF YOU GO:
    Open to the public
    What: Maricopa City Council meeting
    When: Wednesday, Nov. 5; Library information at 5:30 p.m., Work Session at 6 p.m., Regular Meeting at 7 p.m.
    Where: Global Water Center, 22590 N. Powers Parkway

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    Thanks for permitting me to address Mr. Garcia’s questions about my candidacy. And, thanks for once again giving me space to explain that I did not respond to the original questionnaire because I never saw it. Don’t know what happened, just one of those issues we all face with lost e-mail stuff. But I have endeavored to address campaign issues with your constituency through other communications, and thanks to David Garcia (see related letter to the editor) for providing me the opportunity to speak to the issues once again.

    I’m not certain who David Garcia is, and I apologize for that. When I looked in my directory I could not find a listing, and when I looked up voter registrations I found a dozen David Garcias, but none of them lived in Maricopa. I did find a David Garcia from Maricopa who was involved in a lawsuit from a vehicle accident; don’t know if this is the author of the op-ed. I did find a new home purchaser named David Garcia from May of this year in Cobblestone Farms. If this is he, or if not, and if he did get registered to vote, he should be voting against all the Pinal County incumbents who have driven our taxes so high. Looks like a nice house, but it’s a crime that the value today has dropped so much from when he bought it just a few months ago. Everyone should vote out the incumbents for that reason also.

    That’s one of the reasons why I’m running for the State Senate against Rebecca Rios. From the tone in his letter I probably am not getting his vote, if he has one this election cycle, but maybe his letter will help me pick up a few other supporters.

    When Rebecca Rios was first elected to the Senate in 2004 she came into office with the advantage of a Republican-majority created budget and surplus that filled the state’s coffers to overflowing with a billion dollar surplus. When she and the Governor were re-elected in 2006 they managed to reduce the majority of Republicans in the legislature sufficiently that it permitted them to create their own budgets and get just enough cross-over votes to pass the budgets over the objections of the majority of the Republican legislators. They have since spent the money like drunken sailors. Just this last year the entire Democrat caucus and just four Republicans passed the Governors and Rios’s budget. All other Republicans voted against the budget because it spent way too much money against all projected revenue sources. There is no such thing as a “revenue short-fall,” just overspending. In just two short years Rebecca Rios and her cronies have drained a half-billion dollars from the Rainy Day Fund and driven the state into the hole by what many estimate will be one and a half billion dollars before session begins again.

    Just how do you do that and expect to be re-elected, and why would we re-elect someone who so casually spent our hard-earned tax dollars into oblivion?

    Which brings me to the other issue in his letter; I have been a private businessman all my life who is tired of being over-regulated, overtaxed, and over-infringed by my government. I believe that our government is too big and needs to be downsized. I believe in the free speech he exercised in his letter and in the free speech that my clients have exercised in the operations of their businesses. I will defend all the rights of all citizens as your legislator. Or as Barry Goldwater put it: “Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice. And moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue.” I will get the government off the backs of my fellow citizens and business professionals. I will make the government work harder and smarter.

    David’s question about whether business people have choices about their businesses sounds a little naive. Apparently he has never had to cover payroll and make sure employees have a place to report to work every Monday morning. I have not ever engaged in any illegal activity as Rebecca and David have intimated, and, like you, I have to make my mortgage and pay my outrageous tax bill on my over-encumbered home also.

    As to my family values they’re just like yours. I live my life exercising the difference in right from wrong and instill the values in my home we all learned from our parents, our faiths and our heritages.

    The bottom line here is that Rebecca Rios has decided to make government her career and in the process make certain that government grows every year. It’s my intention to return the state government to what our constitution says it’s supposed to be and help return the legislature to its purpose. As Ronald Reagan said, the nine scariest words in the English language are: “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.” The same people that got us in this mess can’t get us out– they don’t know how.

    Please vote for the future of your home and your family. Vote for change. Vote for all the Republicans on the county ticket. Vote for my running mates John Fillmore and Frank Pratt in the LD 23 House race and vote for me, Andre Campos for State Senate.

    Andre Campos
    LD23 Senate Candidate

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    Photo by Jake Johnson

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    With five days left until Tuesday’s general election, Pinal County Recorder Laura Dean-Lytle would like to remind voters who received early ballots to get them in the mail as soon as possible.

    “We want everybody who has an early ballot to vote, sign it and then mail it in so we can receive the ballot before Tuesday’s general election,” Dean-Lytle said.

    If voters are unable to mail their early ballot before November 4, they can turn it in at any polling location on the day of the general election.

    “I would like emphasize that the polls will most likely be very, very busy on Tuesday,” Dean-Lytle said. “The most convenient way is to vote at home and mail your ballot in.”

    For a list of polling locations or for more information on the upcoming general election you can go to the county’s Website or call the Citizens Contact Center at (520) 509-3555 or (888) 431-1311.

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    With really only one park in Maricopa, we desperately need new facilities for everyone in our community to enjoy.

    We already have extraordinary residents who are committed to Maricopa’s youth, businesses, schools and the city’s future.

    Now what we need are new ball fields for our kids and more playgrounds. We need libraries, an aquatics center and a recreation center for people of all ages.

    Those residents we mentioned earlier realize the need for good planning. Other communities have done it and so should we. And this is exactly what we will get by voting Yes on Question 5 in the upcoming election.

    It’s an extraordinary opportunity for all of us. We would argue it is a responsibility, too. After all, what kind of community will Maricopa really be without good parks, libraries and ball fields?

    Importantly, there will not be any tax impact on Maricopa homeowners for two years. That’s because the vote on November 4th is merely an authorization to sell bonds for the new parks and facilities over the next twenty years. The first bonds will not be sold until about two years from now – after additional public input and planning.

    That’s when homeowners will start paying an average of 24 cents per day. As more people and business owners move to Maricopa it will spread the tax obligation, decreasing each person’s share.

    Selling bonds is a fiscally responsible way to finance parks and recreational facilities. It’s what nearly every other community in Arizona does to finance its parks. There are few more important uses of government funds than for public parks and recreational facilities.

    When you think about it, now is an especially good time to bond for taxpayers. Why? Interest rates are low right now, and with real estate prices being a little lower the costs for acquiring land for parks and libraries will be cheaper.

    And, perhaps out of self-interest, consider what having the best parks system in Pinal County will do for home values. People want to move into communities that have great parks and schools. As an ASU Professor of Economics recently said, passage of Question 5 could be a real boost for home prices.

    Voting Yes on Question 5 makes sense for these financial reasons – and for many others.

    Just think about the seniors in our community who may frequently use our first Main Library and enjoy guest lectures, or increased access to the Internet.

    Think about the Little Leaguers, soccer teams and Pop Warner players who will now have more and better places to play. They won’t have to leave our community any more.

    Think of families enjoying our new public aquatics center. Or important community meetings at our Recreation Center. Or more playgrounds where priceless photos are taken and memories are created.

    These are the components of a true community. November 4th is our opportunity to become one.

    Please join us. Cast one of the most rewarding votes you ever will that will mean so much to everyone.

    Anderson served as the Mayor of Maricopa. Farley is the Chairwoman of the Parks & Recreation Advisory Committee.

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    Dear Editor:

    This letter is in response to Mr. Bill Bridwell who writes (see related letter) that union experience represents “only a narrow special interest.” I respectfully disagree. Union members are teachers, nurses, fire fighters and law enforcement officers. These individuals represent a wide range of hard-working citizens. They represent the fabric of America, and we cannot move forward as a county or state without them. They deserve our respect and appreciation.

    As a candidate for State Representative in LD 23, I am proud to have received the endorsement of the AFL-CIO, Arizona Education Association and the Arizona Fire Fighters Union.

    Working families, like myself, want lower taxes and expect their government to be efficient and accountable. I believe, by cutting wasteful spending, government can operate efficiently and effectively while maintaining vital services for children, seniors and veterans.

    During this tough economic climate, we must prepare our children to compete in a global workforce. That is why as State Representative, I voted to support all-day kindergarten and investing in our universities. I also support raising standards by increasing the number of college prep courses in high schools and integrating technology into school curriculum. However, none of this can be done without talented teachers who are paid a competitive wage. As a father of two children in college, I understand the importance of investing in our children and making education affordable. We must seize the moment to be innovators and leaders in education. The future of our state depends on it.

    Some of my legislative accomplishments include working on a bipartisan basis to restore funding for rural transportation in Pinal County. I also successfully expanded the Enterprise Zone Program in Pinal County, which created tax incentives for businesses to create jobs.

    As I meet with voters on the campaign trail, the issue that is on everyone’s mind is the economy. Voters are looking for leadership and they deserve legislators who are ready to lead on day one. In his letter, Mr. Bridwell fails to mention that none of the Republican candidates in LD 23 have ever been elected to any public office.

    As a candidate for State Representative in LD 23, I offer my own range of service: as Council member, working on local issues like building roads, planning and public safety; as a Union Vice President, fighting for health care for working families and better wages for workers; and as a State Representative with a proven record of working on a bipartisan basis.

    It is an exciting time for Pinal County to move forward, and fortunately we have experienced, Democratic candidates with proven records, fighting for working families, who can lead us there.

    Thank You,

    Ernest Bustamante
    Candidate for State Representative LD 23

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    Dear Editor,

    I see Mr. Bill Bridwell still can’t get anything right. Meetings that I have attended over the years in the many communities that I represent don’t have to be called “town hall meetings.” They are sometimes called school meetings with parents, teachers and students. Sometimes they are City Council meetings with council members and constituents. Sometimes they are meetings with mental health centers with staff and community people. Sometimes they are group meetings with groups of citizens experiencing a particular problem. Again they don’t have to called “town hall meetings.”

    If Mr. Bridwell so desperately wants to elect Republicans to LD 23 (see related letter) he should get off his “duff” and quit writing specious letters and start exercising by going door-to-door campaigning for Republican candidates, like we campaign for our offices. It will also help him get in better physical shape, and I am not insinuating that he is 100 pounds overweight. I think it’s more like 200.

    Pete Rios

    Current State Rep. LD 23
    Past Senate President

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      Maricopa Fire Department responded last evening to a fire that continues to burn at a tire storage and recycling plant approximately 20 miles west of Maricopa on Highway 238.

      The fire is concentrated and contained to a pit equivalent to the size of a football field with various piles of rubber tire recycling bi-product referred to as “Fluff.” The fire actually involves an area of material approximately 100 ft. X 150 ft.

      There is no immediate danger to structures on the site or spreading to adjacent piles outside the immediate point of origin or to desert lands.

      According to Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ), “There is no chance of air quality pollution to the City of Maricopa from the present fire condition.” ADEQ is monitoring air quality at various locations.

      The National Weather Service reported winds from the northeast today reaching 26-30 mph with low humidity (6%) and temperatures to reach 89 degrees.

      A strategic operations meeting this morning consisting of various local county, state and federal agencies resulted in a plan to cover the fire with dirt beginning as soon as resources are available on site. The site continues to be secured by State Capital Police Agents.

      It is reported an estimated 10 million tires may be on site at this location.

      The cause of the fire continues to be investigated by the Office of the State Fire Marshal. The Governor’s office is continuing to monitor the situation closely. Officials from the City of Maricopa Fire Department have been asked to take part in the ongoing strategic planning and operations as requested.

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      The Pinal County Deputies Association has been in existence in its current form for over 10 years. One of the charter members who helped develop the by-laws, goals and objectives was Mike Reardon. Prior to his vote on the Board of Directors for endorsement he had indicated that he would be supporting Sheriff Vasquez. It was only when he was called for his vote that it was learned that he would be supporting Babeu instead. He has moved away from our established goals and attempted to use the Association to forward his own political agenda.

      Mr. Babeu has been a peace officer with the Chandler Police Department for about five years. Of that time he has only spent about two years on the road as a patrol officer. To most of us that would barely qualify him as a rookie. Now he wants to take on a department of our size and tell us how we should do our jobs? He has expressed the desire to run for only one term and in the process use our agency as a stepping stone to fulfill his political aspirations.

      The primary objective of the Association has always been to obtain Meet and Confer. The Association has always understood that regardless of what changes for the better or worse a sheriff may make, in four years the next sheriff can change it all. The goal of the Association has been to give the employees legal standing to meet with the Sheriff and the Pinal County Board of Supervisors on a more equal footing to address the issues of pay, benefits and working conditions. Meet and Confer does make it possible for the employees to be treated fairly in disciplinary and promotions regardless of the politician currently in office.

      Sheriff Vasquez understands this and has been instrumental in assisting the Deputies Association in bringing about Meet and Confer. He has met with the Deputies Association and the Pinal County Board of Supervisors and spoke in behalf of Meet and Confer. He has entered into a long term commitment to his employees to assist them in matters that directly concern them in their employment. He was successful in getting 40 new positions within the Sheriff’s Office (even Vanderpool was only able to secure two or three and those were obtained by assessing and reassigning existing funding). He put disciplinary boards together that included the Association and the Fraternal Order of Police as employee advocates. He has allowed employees to bring employee advocates with them into Internal Affairs interrogations. He made a written two-year agreement with the Association to meet with them on a regular basis to discuss and solve problems brought to him.

      From the Association’s standpoint, we have been lucky to have a Sheriff like Chris Vasquez. We needed a major change in 2000 from 24 years of a regime that had placed our reputation at its lowest point. Sheriff Vanderpool started a process of professionalization that brought us out of that era and caused us to be proud of the agency we worked for. Sheriff Chris Vasquez has continued the process and expanded it with personnel, equipment (computers in the cars) more ID Techs and better training. We have come a long way, and, yes, we still have a long way to go. No one can accomplish a job like this within a single, four-year term. We need Chris Vasquez to guide us through the next set of obstacles and stick with us for the long term. He has been committed to us, and we will continue to be committed to him.

      Yes, we have endorsed Chris Vasquez for Sheriff. He has kept his promises to us and we will keep our promise to him.

      Aubrey M. Keck
      Board of Directors, Pinal County Deputies Association

      On Oct. 8 Sheriff Vasquez received the endorsement of the Casa Grande Police Association. Below is a comment from him on this endorsement:

      I am very proud to announce that today I received the endorsement of the Casa Grande Police Officers’ Association. This endorsement means a lot to me as it is where I started my career and is the foundation of my experience as a police officer, supervisor and as an executive leader. It is where I gained the expertise in implementing Community Based Policing programs. I have a strong record of success at the Casa Grande Police Department which carried over to even more success with the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office. I thank the CGPOA for their confidence and support.

      The CGPOA knows what it means to receive new leadership. They just hired a new Deputy Chief. In doing so the officers demanded real law enforcement experience at the command level with a proven track record of success. This is the same I believe the citizens of Pinal County will demand on November 4th.

      Sheriff Chris Vasquez

      Submitted photo