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News for Southeastern Arizona, provided by the University of Arizona School of Journalism

Arizona to regulate cryptocurrency offerings, crowdfunding and blockchains

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PHOENIX — Whether through crowdfunding or the launch of a new cryptocurrency, fundraisers seeking investors will have new rules and regulations to work under in Arizona. Rep. Jeff Weninger (R-Chandler) has introduced a slate of bills that collectively update the way in which state government looks at new e-commerce technologies like crowdfunding, Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs), cryptocurrency mining and blockchains. If any of that sounds new and unfamiliar, that’s because it is — these represent some of the newest advances in how virtual data is processed and money is exchanged. sCrowdfunding is online fundraising campaign set up for a specific purpose. This could be anything from designing videogame to raising money for car repairs, and there are sites dedicated to different kinds of crowdfunding. The two largest are GoFundMe and Kickstarter, with $5 billion and $1 billion respectively raised,...

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Legislative Roundup: Minimum Wage, Campus Free Speech, Egg De-reg

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PHOENIX — This week the House of Representatives quickly filled the vacant seat left by former Representative Don Shooter from Yuma. His replacement is Tim Dunn, who was sworn in Tuesday afternoon. Dunn is a farmer from Yuma and will represent District 13 as a Republican. Shooter was expelled on Feb. 1 following the release of a report that detailed allegations of sexual harassment made against Shooter and a fellow legislator, Rep. Michelle Ugenti-Rita (R-Scottsdale). The independent investigators found that many of the allegations were not credible or were impossible to verify. Other than that, the Legislature took a look at a number of important bills that will have an immediate effect on college campuses, as well as egg producers. Confused? Read on. Minimum to Hit a Maximum Sen. Sylvia Allen (R-Snowflake) has introduced a resolution to cap the...

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Tucson: A Hip-Hop Embedded Community

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What many thought would be a passing fad, scholars in Tucson saw it as something worth study. Today, Tucson is a beacon for the distinct sound and study of hip-hop. Unlike other genres, hip-hop, a black sheep of the music family, has a fixed origin. Aug. 11, 1973, an apartment in the Bronx. A niche New York scene grew to a world-wide movement in a matter of years, creating vibrant communities all over the map, Arizona included. A melding of the grassroots hip-hop scene with the academic world makes the Tucson scene stand out in a saturated market. “Hip-hop is a culture,” says Alain-Philippe Durand, dean of the College Humanities at the University of Arizona. He and faculty pioneered the nation’s first hip-hop minor at the school. “There are many different topics that are connected,” he says. “Through studying...

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Booming industry takes flight along San Pedro River

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The desert’s warm sun barely rises over the mountains of Cochise County, and the brisk air rejuvenates eager birders on this mid-January day. Nine birders prepare themselves for the day’s adventure — binoculars, scopes and identifying bird books. Belinda Brodie, one of the nine, carries a tattered notebook ready to write down each species she hopes to spot. She and her husband furthered their interest in birding when they moved to Arizona. That interest is what brings Brodie and the eight other birders to the San Pedro River this chilly morning. This 150-mile-long stretch of water is one of the few rivers that flows north from Mexico to southern Arizona. It serves as a major conservation corridor, and is home to hundreds of birds, native and migratory, throughout the year. January tends to bring raptors and sparrows in peak numbers....

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Dems, GOP craft 2nd District voter turnout strategies

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With Democratic enthusiasm surging, record-breaking turnout might come to Arizona’s Second Congressional District midterm election, said Ron Barber, a former holder of the seat.  “If that kind of energy continues, I think we’re going to have a different kind of midyear voter turnout,” Barber said. The seat is held by Rep. Martha McSally, who is running for U.S. Senate. Arizona’s Second Congressional District includes the eastside of Pima County and Cochise County, and is considered a battleground race.  Seven Democrats are campaigning for the seat: Ann Kirkpatrick, former member of the U.S. House; Billy Kovacs, local entrepreneur and co-founder of “Prep & Pastry”; Mary Matiella, former assistant secretary of the Army Financial Management and Comptroller; Bruce Wheeler, former member of the Arizona House of Representatives; Barbara Sherry, a rancher from McNeal; Matt Heinz, a physician at Tucson Medical Center...

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Students and activists fight for no more stolen sisters

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While many people first heard about the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women movement at this year’s women’s marches, Eve Reyes-Aguirre was exposed to it years ago. Reyes-Aguirre, an Izkaloteka woman living in Phoenix, lost her 16-year-old cousin in September 2001 to a domestic violence murder in a motel room in Amarillo, Texas. Her cousin’s 23-year-old boyfriend at the time, the suspected killer, has been on the run from law enforcement ever since. Now a mother and an activist, Reyes-Aguirre is running for the Arizona Senate with the Green Party — motivated by her cousin’s death and her experiences with the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women movement. Her story of a family member who died from domestic violence is not an anomaly among indigenous women. According to the most recent U.S. Census, indigenous people comprise about 2 percent of the...

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Woman’s dream comes alive at Bisbee café

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Wind down Tombstone Road into quirky Bisbee and you will come across the famous “Iron Man” statue. Look directly across from the Iron Man and there you will see Bisbee’s biggest gem. It’s a market full of variety, community, history and love. What once was a courthouse service station in the heart of Historic Bisbee is now High Desert Market and Café. Owner Peyton Tamburo started High Desert Market and Café  in 2000. She began the small storefront by bringing vegetables from her garden and selling them farmer’s market-style in an empty garage. “I just rolled up the garage door and people from the community let me put my vegetables in there,” said Tamburo. “I had to buy a refrigerator after awhile so I put some cheese, and then some and olives, and it just took off from there.”...

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Locals anticipate Tombstone’s demise

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After years of being an also-ran on True West Magazine’s Top 10 True Western Towns, Tombstone finally made the list. It’s No. 9. For many people who live and visit this town, it could seem as good news set atop the bad: They believe the town is slowly dying. It’s high noon on a Saturday and the streets are nearly bare — it’s a senior citizens’ paradise. Only service dogs and retirees stroll along the broken wooden sidewalks. Novelty cowboy gear, old timey photo shops, and run-down bars line the streets. Coming around the corner from Fremont Street onto Allen Street, visitors are sent back to the Wild West of the 1800s. Empty dirt roads, stagecoaches, and makeshift signs make up the landscape of the town. Locals and costumed street actors mix in their western attire. The cheap movie...

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Playing cowboy in a street actor’s fantasyland

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Men and women travel from around the globe to dress up and play cowboy in Tombstone, where everyday is Halloween. Many of the Tombstone actors have zero desire to move to Hollywood to pursue a silver-screen career and are simply satisfied in the town of make believe. Five years ago, the O.K. Corral busker, Ian Messenger, was an oxygen tank delivery man in Sierra Vista. One day he had enough of the real world. “I realized I can’t do this, delivering oxygen is basically like being the grim reaper, you visit people when they’re dying,” he said. The thought of having a 9-to-5 job no longer appealed to Messenger. He knew his childhood dreams of becoming a professional wrestler were behind him, so seeking an acting job in his hometown of Tombstone became his next plan. “I had real...

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Guns blazing: Another bar shooting raises concerns

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Tourists gather eagerly outside the historic O.K. Corral, drawn by the promise of “Gunfights Daily!” Billboards entering Tombstone advertise the lawless intrigue, drama and violence of Old West culture. And yet, beneath the magnetism of local lore, America’s Second Amendment City grapples with striking a balance between real and re-enacted violence. As of Jan. 29, the small town has played host to its second shooting in almost as many months. According to Tombstone Marshal’s Office press releases, the shootings on both Jan. 29 and Oct. 13, 2017, took place outside the Doc Holliday’s Saloon and occurred as a result of ineffective gun policies in the bar. Both incidents resulted in leg wounds. “The issue in both cases was that patrons were allowed to carry weapons into the bar, drink, and then leave with their weapon the same day,” Tombstone...

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