Arizona Republic from Phoenix, Arizona on April 7, 1978 · Page 86
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Arizona Republic from Phoenix, Arizona · Page 86

Phoenix, Arizona
Issue Date:
Friday, April 7, 1978
Page 86
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REPUBUC wra ?i Senate vote favors equality portion of ERA THE Arizona Republic By J ANA BOMMERSBACH The Arizona Senate informally approved tne equality statement of the controversial Equal Rights Amendment on Thursday, but told Congress in a memorial to redraft the issue so it excludes federal jurisdiction. ' The Senate, meeting in Committee of the Whole, approved on a 16 to 13 vote an amendment proposed by Sen. Polly Getzwiller, D-Casa Grande. Her proposal, which got bipartisan support, says the Arizona Legislature "supports equality of rights under the law for women and their inclusion In the Constitution of the United States." But it says the Legislature does not support the second section of the ERA that gives the federal government the power to enforce equality. Getzwiller said that secion was "usurping the sovereignty of the states." : Several opponents have often said they would vote for the ERA because they support the principle of equality under the law if it were not for the sovereignty question. Getzwiller's suggestion apparently caught everyone off guard. It put the Senate in the position of "finally having to vote on this floor without the trees to hide behind," said Majority Leader Alfredo Gutierrez, D-Phoenix. "Having to finally vote simply on the question raised by these words: equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged on account of sex. "We'll know if it's equality we fight or the artifice of the second section." After Getzwiller's amendment was approved, the Senate informally approved the final version on a 14 to 12 vote. It will take 16 votes to, approve the issue formally. Sen. Trudy Camping, R-Phoenix, the Senate's most vocal opponent of ERA, said she could not support Getzwiller's amendment because the wording of the equality statement "is really bothersome." She said she would only support an equal rights amendment if it "made the difference between men and women possible." "I hope no one here would not want us to be equal," Getzwiller said in urging support for her plan. Democrats who opposed the issue on the final vote were Sens. Bill Hardt of Globe, William Swink of San Manuel, Arthur Hubbard of Ganado, John Hut-t o n of Sierra Vista, and Lewis McDonald of Flagstaff. All but Hubbard also opposed Getzwiller's amendment. Republican senators opposing the issue on the final vote were Camping, Anne Lindeman of Phoenix, James Mack of Tempe, Ray Rottas of Phoenix, Hal Runyan of Litchfield Park (although he supported Getzwiller's amendment), Boyd Tenney of Prescott, Stan Turley of Mesa, and Rod McMullin of Scottsdale. ox SECTION B Page 1 Friday, April 7, 1978 On,e man's opinion Fickle tax commissioner gives politics a bad name By BERNIE WYNN Republic Political Editor State Tax Commissioner Bob Kennedy, ' board if he or she changes party affili- it ! $26,000 still uncollected in 76 sales tax By DAN McGOWAN The city of Phoenix is still trying to collect more than $26,000 from residents who shopped out of town to avoid a 1976 sales tax increase. The collection effort evolves from the time that the Phoenix retail sales tax was raised briefly to 6 percent, while the tax in surrounding cities remained at 5 percent. City officials feared losing lax revenue from residents who visited the suburbs to buy cars and other high-priced items. So Phoenix treasury employees checked state registration records and contacted residents who . had bought autos, boats, trailers and airplanes outside the city. They were billed for the extra 1 percent in sales tax they would have paid had they bought the merchandise in Phoenix. The assessment, called a "use tax," was leveled at more than 5,000 persons who made such purchases between the time the extra tax was imposed in November 1976 to the time of its repeal 3'2 months later. According to City Treasurer Paul Wenner, most of the residents paid up promptly, allowing the city to collect $181,000. Now, he says, city officials are down to a hard core of 582 accounts that have not been paid. They owe an estimated $26,190. Wenner said that of the unpaid accounts, 360 are being dunned by a collection agency called American Creditors Bureau. Another 80 are being handled by the city attorney's office and the other 142 are being paid off in installments or are being allowed to delay payment. He said the city demanded a use tax only on registered items. "If a man went to Scottsdale to buy a $400 suit, there was no way we could collect on that," he said. The hard-core resisters who continue refusing to pay the tax are likely to become defendants in civil suits filed by the prosecutor, said Philip Haggerty. assistant city attorney. If the reluctant taxpayers lose, they'll have to pay court costs in addition to the use tax, he said. The sales tax hike was a vain attempt by the City Council to increase municipal revenues after a lean budget year. To compensate, the council removed the city's 1 percent tax on food. In a subsequent election forced by initiative petitions, voters killed the new tax package by a substantial Republic photo by Mifct Smith Teamicork Erma Bombeck, left, whose syndicated column appears in The Arizona Republic, gives pointers to Diane Hutchinson, a student from Arizona State University, before the taping of Mrs. Bombeck's segments for the Good Morning, America show. Ms. Hutchinson and other members of the Women in Communications group were paired with women involved in jobs students find interesting. whose job on Division 2 of the state Board of Tax Appeals ends this year, is a prime example of why politics has a bad public image. Kennedy switched from Democrat to Republican in 1976 to block the appoint-ment of fellow tax commissioner Republican Waldo DeWitt to the appeals board. The Legislature had abolished the Tax Commission but stipulated that the incumbent commissioners should be full-time members of the appeals board until their terms expired. DeWitt's term expired and then-Gov. Raul Castro was expected to name him as the sole Republican on the three-member board. This would leave Democrats Kennedy and Castro's new appointee, Edward Richardson of Tucson. The law creating Division 1 and Division 2 of the Board of Tax Appeals stipulates that not more than two members may be from one political party. So when Kennedy switched his voter registration to Republican, Castro was forced to name another Democrat to the board. He named Phoenix attorney Morris Kaplan, who took office in January 1S77. So things rocked along legally as far as board membership was concerned until March 8 of this year, when Kennedy switched his voter registration back to Democrat. He said last month his reason for the latest switch was to run for a seat on the Arizona Corporation Commission. But Kennedy apparently has outfoxed himself this time. According to an attorney general's opinion issued Dec. 10, 1976. Kennedy is no longer qualified to sit on the board of appeals. Kennedy' reportedly was out of town in Gila Bend on Wednesday and in Nogales on Thursday and could not be reached for comment. Attorney General Jack LaSota, who was chief assistant to Gov. Bruce Babbitt when Babbitt was attorney general, issued a legal opinion at the request of Al Rogers, then administrative assistant to Castro. LaSota noted that the Legislature had abolished the state Tax Commission and created a Board of Tax Appeals consisting of six members appointed by the governor. The board is divided into two divisions of three members each. The law, declared, "Not more than two members of each division shall be members of the same political party." LaSota's opinion said, "This language creates an inherent prohibition against both the appointment of three members of the same party and the continued service on the board by a member who has changed his or her party affiliation in a manner that results in all three members being of the same party. "Thus, if two members of the boa.rd are of the same party, the third member cannot continue 'to serve on the some county areas He said water conservation programs could include crop pattern changes for agriculture and mandatory controls over residential water use. He said farmers may have to search for crops that use less water and abandon high water users. He said recharging ground water supplies could be accomplished in two major ways: recharging the ground with treated sewage and turning captured floodwater back into problem areas for ground water recharge. Frank and other planners are concerned about continued urban development in dealing with water. He said growth into critical areas should be studied thoroughly. is Frank said the areas most likely to ' experience water - shortage problems are northern and northwest Phoenix, much of Scottsdale, Paradise Valley and many west-side communities, such as Peoria, Sun City and Goodyear. He noted, however, some possible solutions to the problem. They include using SRP water in problem-prone areas, mandatory water conservation programs and ground water recharge proposals. Although the SRP is not obligated to provide water in areas outside its boundaries, a reversal of that policy could lead to water shortage solutions in the "more sensitive areas," Frank said. PEANUTS EVEWN0W ANP THEN I THINK ABOUT MY UNCLE IN 13 dry for ation to that of the majority mem bers," according to the opinion. Under the circumstances, it is up to Babbitt to ask Kennedy to either reregister as a Republican or vacate the office. If Kennedy refuses to do either, the governor then must ask the attorney general to obtain a writ from the Superior Court declaring the office is being held illegally and ordering the offender to vacate it immediately. Kennedy has been around politics for a long time, serving as state treasurer from 1964-66. He was elected that year to a term on the Tax Commission, but in 1968 ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination to the U.S. Senate. He was re-elected to the Tax Commission in 1972, and that term expires at the end of this year. Mrs. Juana Mase of Tucson has announced she will seek the Democratic nomination to the seat on the Corporation Commission. Tom Patten, former executive director of the state Democratic Parly, is expected to announce soon, too. It seems to me that the Democrats ought to be tired of Kennedy cynically using the party name to advance only his selfish interests. The party can do better than that. And the public deserves better. Forecast By JERRY SEPER Many areas of Maricopa County outside the Salt River Project's boundaries may be in for water shortages in years to come if reliable alternative water supplies are not located, a county planner said Thursday. Mark Frank, who has been working with state and federal officials on a water quality management program, made that observation in a progress report to the Maricopa County Planning and Zoning Commission. Speaking of the future problems, Frank said: "How severe these will be is not known and will depend on a number of considerations, but it is a concern." Frank said the culprit apparently is (continual) pumping of existing ground water supplies, resulting in significant overdrafts. "You could say we actually are mining water in this valley," he said. Frank told the commissioners that Maricopa County's daily water consumption rate is about twice the expected normal water supply, resulting in nearly a 600 million gallon per -day overdraft. "At this rate, we eventually are going to run out of water in areas outside the boundaries of the Salt River Project," he said. Apache County Sheriff Art Lee said deputies had no suspects in the case until March 1977 when Woolen sent a letter to New Mexico authorities allegedly confessing that he had strangled a man. Woolen was in the Colorado State Hospital at the time. Lee, who interviewed Woolen al the mental hospital a year ago, said Woolen told him he was hitchhiking through Arizona and New Mexico when Watson picked him up. Lee said Woolen told him Watson was strangled after an argument between the two over an Indian girl who. also was riding in the car. Woolen appeared before Greer at the Navajo County Courthouse here. He was confined to the Navajo County Jail since his extradition from Colorado because of overcrowding in the Apache County Jail in St. Johns. Frank also told the commissioners a study has drown that ground water pumping has altered the normal rater flow across the Valley. He said ground water historically has flowed from east to west, leaving the county on its western borders. He said, the water now runs from east to about the middle of the county, where it turns northward. This, he added, has resulted in some water-quality problems, mainly in Buckeye. "We have found hij,m concentrations of nitrates in the Buckeye area. There also have been findings of high levels of fluoride. These findings are of concern," he said. The commissioners accepted the report without debate. demands. We don't think our demands are unreasonable." The teachers' request is an attempt to bring salaries in line with the purchasing power of 19G8 dollars. The starting pay in the 1967-68 school year was $6,000, which had a purchasing power of $5,850, teachers said. "Since that time the standard of living of teachers in this district has gradually declined because improvements in the salary schedule have not PUHSD teachers ask 12.3 pet. raise; district official questions 'good faith9 LUAS A 816 TT STORE, ANP HE hi 1 HAP HIGH y ZZI V HOPES J Calif ornian in strangling is given up to 30 years Senators OK state-tax relief; bill is expected to die in House By CECELIA GOODNOW Teachers in the Phoenix Union High School District asked Thursday for a 12.3 percent increase in salaries and benefits, which would raise the average teacher's salary by about $2,000. "I guess we wonder whether this was a good-faith offer or whether it's an attempt to play games with the process," said school district spokesman Jim McAllister. "Economically, there's no way we could accept the proposal." McAllister told representatives of the Classroom Teachers Association that he was surprised at the amount of the request, which is roughly double the district's initial offer of a 6.25 percent increase. '. After the teachers made their proposal, however, the district negotiating team countered with a 7 percent offer. Bill Wharton, chief negotiator for the teachers, said the proposal was made in good faith. He commented later that reaching a settlement probably "will not be as difficult as the figures might indicate." He disagreed with McAllister's statement that the district cannot afford such a large raise. "Everyone can interpret the budget differently," Wharton said. "There is money available that would meet our kept pace with the inflationary trend," says a teachers' association statement. "Teachers have fallen behind year after year after year," Wharton said. The teachers' request would cost $2.3 million, vyhile the school board's latest offer would cost $1.6 million. McAllister said the district's salary offer is dependent on acceptance of a staffing proposal that would reduce the number of teachers hired, resulting in a savings of $163,000. t Continued on Page B-6 to reflect the boost in inflation as determined by the consumer price index. The bill, supported by 27 senators led by John Hutton, D-Sierra Vista, would end what some have called a "secret income tax." Lawmakers say as salaries rise so doss the amount oj income tax, but because of inflation a higher salary doesn't necessarily 'result in an increase of spendable income. To pay his higher taxes, a wo:ker must dip even deeper into his spendable income, making him worse off than before the raise, lawmakers point out. Similar measures at the federal tax level are being studied in Congress HE PIPNT LAST LONG, TH0U6H., HOLBROOK - A California man who claimed "people from outer space" controlled his mind was sentenced Wednesday to 10 to 30 years in state prison after pleading guilty to the strangulation death of a man nearly five years ago. Willard John Woolen, 39, was sen-. tenced by Apache County Superior . Court Judge D. L. Greer, who three weeks ago ruled that Woolen was competent to stand trial despite the suspect's admitted history of mental troubles. Before serving his time in Arizona, Woolen must complete a sentence in Colorado for aggravated assault. . Woolen was charged in the July 1973 death of Roger Lynn Watson, 29, of Arlington, Tenn., whose body was found along Interstate 40 near Lupton in Apache County. He pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. Payers of state income tax would receive smaller yearly bills under a measure tentatively approved on Thursday by the Senate Committee of the Whole. Senate Bill 1198, its backers claim, would erase the effects of inflation on the state's income-tax system. Final approval of the bill is assured in the Senate, where the proposal has bipartisan support. However, it is not expected to pass the House, where so-called tax reform bills are being set aside for consideration in a special legislative session next year. Under the measure, income tax deductions would be increased yearly bap EES -

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