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Public Statements

Issue Position: Rural Arizona and The Environment

Issue Position

By:
Date:
Location: Unknown

Somewhere between the size of Vermont or Maryland, ours is a district blessed with abundant natural resources, from water to solar energy, from minerals to timber; in fact, much of Arizona's wealth may be found in LD-6.

Stretching from the rim of the Grand Canyon, sweeping east to the San Francisco peak, then south to the Red Rocks of Sedona, the district moves southward to the lush Verde River Valley then east again and up the Mogollon Rim to the deep forests of Heber and the White Mountains. This region and Legislative District 6 is the heart and soul of Arizona.

Yet in this legislative district of approximately 10,000 square miles, less than 20% of the land area is available to private ownership. Nearly 83% of the available land is in some form of non-developable, non-tax generating public or government ownership, leaving little for individuals or people of enterprise and hard work to earn a competitive living. In Gila County, private lands amount to less than 3% of the entire county.

This is the foundational issue facing Rural Arizona, where less than 25% of the state's population resides, yet the majority of the state's natural wealth may be found. This is also where cattlemen and farmers must daily find new and creative ways in which they can deal with a growing federal government and hundreds of over-reaching regulations written by people nearly 3,000 miles away. Self-proclaimed "guardians of the land" living hundreds of miles away greedily wait to file lawsuits to enforce compliance with federal regulations. When litigation or threat of litigation undermines honest hardworking Americans, a change is necessary.

I believe that when individuals are free to earn a competitive living from the land, they become the best stewards of that land. The days of environmental exploitation in this county and in this state are over. Good business recognizes the value of good land stewardship much more so than individuals who live hundreds of miles away and do not earn their livelihood from the land.

Arizona is blessed with abundant energy resources, many of which are found in rural Arizona. I believe we should develop all domestic sources of energy from solar and coal to nuclear and wind. Arizona presently lacks a strategic energy development strategy; this also should be changed. I believe we can dig and develop while being good stewards of the environment; the two are not mutually exclusive.

In Phoenix, I am a voice for those individuals and communities who live on and earn from the land. From advocating for a healthy forest through timber thinning and harvesting, to finding ways by which local municipalities can expand their economic development, I am your advocate in state government and I have taken your concerns to the federal government when necessary.


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