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  • Once ill himself, med student hopes to heal others

    Tim Cheves has used his own medical issue to motivate him. Cheves, who battled chronic fatigue and immunodeficiency syndrome as well as other issues, is now hoping to help others as a doctor. It started in his youth. Cheves suffered severe panic attacks and anxiety that often times prevented him from having a normal childhood. As he got older those subsided, but he battled depression, but for most of the time he kept it hidden, trying to be the life of the party when the truth was 180 degrees different. Cheves graduated from Mountain View in 2007, then moved on to the University of Arizona. It was at the UofA where he started feeling bad and it quickly escalated. He got worse and worse over the course of six years. Soon he had tumors on his thyroid, his liver was failing and after 12 kidney stones he quit counting. “After every three words I would have to stop and take a breath,” Cheves admitted. “Horrible joint and muscle pain, but could not take pain medication due to my liver. I would sleep 14 hours a day and I would wake up feeling like I ran five marathons.”

  • Oro Valley to capture additional 500 acre-feet of CAP water

    The Town of Oro Valley will add 500 acre-feet of Central Arizona Project (CAP) water to its potable water system after the completion of a blending facility at Calle Buena Vista, near Hardy Road. Water Utility Director Philip Saletta said at $332,000, the facility was relatively inexpensive to complete since it didn’t involve the installation of a significant amount of pipeline to connect into the Tucson water system, which provides the town with its CAP water. The installation also included valves to control pressure and flow, a flow meter, a solar panel for power, and a security wall.The process of water blending is becoming more common these days, and as explained by Saletta, “is accomplished through a simple, in-line device called a static mixer. It is a three-foot length of pipe that has baffles, so the water from our well and the Tucson Water system is evenly mixed as they enter the pipeline in the water distribution system. This is done to maintain consistent water quality for our customers.”Blending CAP water with groundwater will also reduce the town’s groundwater pumping, meeting the town’s goal to pump only 5,500 acre feet of groundwater each year. That is significantly less than in years past, such as in 2005 when the town was pumping more than 10,000 acre feet. Last year, the town pumped 6,000 acre-feet of groundwater. The blending facility will help the town not only now, but looking ahead, Saletta said. 

  • AIA looking into Mountain View allegations

    Whenever a high school sports program gets an influx of transfers it raises red flags. That appears to be the case with the Mountain View football program. The school is being investigated for a potential recruiting violation and the Arizona Interscholastic Association Executive Board will be briefed during their meeting on Monday.“The board will get a brief summary of progress to date in Executive Session,” said Chuck Schmidt, the AIA associate executive director. The briefing will be in the executive session due to privacy issues because student or students’ names “will be discussed.”The investigation has been ongoing for about a month and both Marana Unified School District and Tucson Unified School District have been contacted by AIA.“I have been very impressed with the cooperation between all involved,” Schmidt noted. AIA rules state that “No school administrator, athletic coach or employee of a high school district shall engage in recruitment either by direct contact with a student or indirectly through parents, legal guardians, common school employees, directors of summer athletic programs or other persons who are in a position to influence the student’s choice of a school.”Recruitment is defined by the AIA as “the act of influencing a student to enroll in a school or to transfer from one school to another in order that the student may participate in interscholastic athletics.”

  • Pima County to do away with precinct scanners

    Pima County will no longer make use of precinct scanners at polling locations after the Pima County Board of Supervisors rejected a measure to spend $1.8 million to replace them. The board’s decision came despite a recommendation by Pima County Election Integrity Commission (PCEIC) to keep the scanners in place since they allow for an electronic count at polling locations, serving as a way to double check ballots when they are tallied in the central count system. Bill Beard, District 1 PCEIC representative called the board’s decision frustrating, particularly since he says Pima County has a poor track record with handling elections in the past.“If the board is truly concerned about the matter, perhaps actually listening to the advisers they appointed to advise them on thing elections-related might be a good place to start,” he said, also noting that District 1’s Ally Miller was the only supervisor to vote in favor of the PCEIC’s recommendation to keep scanners in place.In a recent op-ed, Beard said the elimination of scanners eliminates a much-needed check in the election process, and could create unbalanced power.“Each and every step of the process is to be watched by those outside the system, keeping those inside the machinery from having sway over outcomes… by subdividing the counting into smaller parts it becomes easier to detect errors and potential fraud,” Beard wrote. “When you can compare the final numbers on Election Day with the central machine counts and the sum from all the smaller precinct sections, it makes it a lot harder to cheat.”

  • Marana Farm Co-op provides education, opportunities and good food

    The Marana Farm Co-op has a number of goals. The main objective is sustainable agriculture and healthy eating, but everything from saving money to education is also behind what the Co-op tries to do. Dan Arnold began the Co-op when he purchased about 26 acres of land on Postvale Road near I-10. His little farm grows a number of crops, is home to a wide variety of animals and also has the Co-op’s store. The store, which is open seven days a week, is housed in an old greenhouse and gives folks a chance to buy fresh produce, even if there is not a farmers market going on that day. On Saturdays the farm hosts a small farmers market, while some of the other 30 members of the Co-op take the goods to other farmers markets around Southern Arizona. “I used to go to farmers markets and see 10 other farmers from Marana,” explained Arnold. “That’s 10 tables and 10 rental fees. Now one person takes goods from a variety of farmers and we save money. Plus, it means more of us can stay on our farms. It is tough to be away from the farm for a whole day.”There are about 30 members of the co-op, and while no one is forced to grow any specific crops, everyone knows what the other farmers are growing and it cuts down on duplication and offers customers a wider choice.“The main objective is sustainable agriculture and healthy eating,” said Arnold. “We want to educate people about locally grown produce.”

  • Legal questions surround Pima County plans to not hire smokers

    Pima County could soon implement a policy that would require current county employees and those seeking employment to submit to a nicotine test. Backed by County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry, the proposal – intended as a cost-saving measure that would create a nicotine-free workplace – is still in the initial phase of development and must first be reviewed by the County Merit Commission, the Health Benefits Wellness Advisory Committee, and the Board of Supervisors before approval.If put into action, the measure would mean higher health premiums for those who refuse to test or who test positive for nicotine.According to Huckelberry, the proposal would include a 30-percent surcharge for nicotine users in the first year, effective July 1, 2015. That would increase to 40 percent in 2015-16, and 50 percent for 2016-17.It is estimated that 32 percent of county employees currently use nicotine.For those applying to work in the county, a refusal to test or a positive test would mean the applicant would not be hired, and would have to wait a year to reapply.

  • Marana Police Beat - Week of Aug. 20

    Marana Police DepartmentOn Friday, Aug. 8, at 2:36 p.m., Marana police responded to a call about a theft at the Sportspark at 6901 N. Casa Grande Highway. The caller said that her purse, along with $40 in cash and three different credit cards, were stolen from her car. Her friend’s $400 tablet was stolen as well. The passenger window was smashed. Replacing the window would cost about $500.On Monday, Aug. 4, at 5:46 p.m., Marana police responded to a call about a past theft at the LA Fitness on Business Park Drive. The caller said he received a call from his bank asking if he had bought two Greyhound tickets for a total of $469. The caller said he didn’t and realized he left his wallet in the car while at the gym. He returned to his car and found the wallet missing from his gym bag. Nothing else was taken from the gym bag. His driver’s license debit/credit cards, school ID and insurance cards were in the wallet. On Sunday, Aug. 3, at 9:40 a.m., Marana police responded to a call about a house being egged at the 1200 block of North Tare Lane. The officer found 12 different places that eggs hit the house. The officer advised that the caller talk to his two boys to see if they did it. The caller said this is the second time that his house has been egged.On Saturday, Aug. 2, at 8:44 p.m., Marana police responded to a call about a broken window at the 3500 block of West Orange Grove Road. The officer saw a large hole in the sliding glass door and glass shattered around the area. The woman who lived at the apartment said her, her son and daughter-in-law were watching TV when they heard the glass shatter. No one was hurt. The officer found a rock by the sliding glass door. On Friday, Aug. 1, at 8:39 p.m., Marana police responded to the Walmart at 8280 N. Cortaro Road in response to a shoplifter. The caller said he saw two men that were acting suspiciously. He saw them put spray paint cans into their shopping cart. The two passed the registers without purchasing the spray paint. The caller said he stopped them and one of the men took off while the other stayed. The man who took off eventually came back to the store after hearing that the officer had his license plate number. Both were cited with shoplifting and then released. The men were about to shoplift 24 spray paint cans that totaled at $90.48.

  • Neighborhood Whole Foods store reopens on northwest side

    After a year and a half, northwest-siders will have their neighborhood Whole Foods back.The upscale grocer, which closed its location at 7133 N. Oracle Road in January 2013 for a complete rebuild, will reopen on Aug. 27. The new store is twice as large as its predecessor, covering about 31,000 square feet in the Casa Adobes Plaza and employing about 180 people, more than half of them full time.About a week and a half before the grand opening, the aisles were already stocked with dry goods and frozen foods as construction workers put finishing touches in the departments. Along with the standard grocery offerings, Whole Foods will have a juice bar, an olive bar, a non-GMO wine selection, a taqueria, a pizzeria, a charcuterie case and an attached corner pub, among other specialties. As Whole Foods likes to do in its stores, this location will also stock local and regional products, such as fresh herbs from a Willcox farm.Store team lead Scott Holmes said the goal is to make the store a neighborhood hub with its own character. With the fencing down, passersby are wandering into the not-quite-finished lobby already, he said.Richard Shenkarow, co-owner of the 1940s-era Casas Adobes Plaza, said the old space was antiquated and not designed for Whole Foods, having previously been a Wild Oats and a Reay’s Ranch Market. The ground-up rebuild, which keeps the architectural integrity of the distinctive, Spanish Colonial-style complex, is “fantastic” and completes the repositioning Shenkarow set out to do when he bought the plaza 18 years ago, he said.

  • Budget issues arise during Oro Valley election

    In the midst of an election season in Oro Valley where the mayor and three councilmembers are up for reelection, the topic of the town’s budget has been brought up along with a council seat challenger saying funds have not been properly managed.Don Bristow, who is challenging one of the open council seats currently occupied by Councilwoman Mary Snider, Councilman Joe Hornat and Vice Mayor Lou Waters, questions why the council was spending reserves while it has been said that the economy has another year until it is out of the recession. “What I am looking at is what have they been doing with the fund over the last three years,” Bristow said. “It peaked, then, of course, they hit us with the utility tax and that tax helped raise the fund. Then spending it down to the lowest dollar amount since they have been in office and the lowest percentage in probably several years.”The town is mandated by policy to have 25 percent of the recurring expenditures in contingency, which is 10 percent higher than the state mandate of 15 percent. The council currently budgeted 31 percent for the 2014/15 budget. In years past, the percentage was around 40 percent.Stacey Lemos, the town’s financial director, said the town has used its contingency fund properly, citing the town ended the 2011/12 year with a surplus of about $395,000 and ended the 2012/13 year with a surplus of about $2.6 million. Those funds were used for one-time expenditures such as burying Tucson Electric Power lines, the Aquatic Center and Naranja Park.“We worked very close with council to make sure those funds were there and that using those funds did not jeopardize the amount that we needed to hold to meet our contingency reserve policy threshold,” Lemos said.

  • Community policing as a foundation for public safety in Oro Valley

    For more than 14 years, it has been my pleasure to serve as the Chief of Police for the town of Oro Valley. I consider myself fortunate to work for an amazing community and to stand beside the honorable men and women of the Oro Valley Police Department (OVPD). Throughout my 36-year career, community policing principles have been the foundation of my role as a police officer, supervisor, manager and leader.OVPD is a true community policing organization, and we understand that community policing is not a program or series of programs – it is a way of life. In Oro Valley, community policing is considered a core value, which underlies all programs and initiatives. Although the most visible aspect of community policing is with the uniformed police officers, it is the norm for all of our members.OVPD’s approach to maintaining a community policing organization centers around five principles that define its philosophy: service, accountability, problem solving, neighborhood focus and decentralization. By ensuring all five principles are applied, the department focuses on working with the community in a “co-active” manner to assure issues are identified and addressed either before they occur (prevention) or immediately following incidents (mitigation). This approach also looks at potential threats and trends in the surrounding areas in order to take steps to shield Oro Valley from falling victim to those issues.OVPD is an organization that exists to provide service. In Oro Valley, when citizens call for a police officer, they get a police officer. Not all calls for service require enforcement action, nor do they involve an arrest. Police officers mitigate problems, provide direction and guidance, help the injured or sick, educate the public, direct traffic, unlock car doors, look for lost pets and so much more. Service comes in all shapes and sizes. OVPD members never lose sight of that, and they recognize that residents pay their salaries.Accountability is the personal responsibility OVPD members have toward their service performance. OVPD employees challenge themselves to provide the highest level of professional service, making the necessary changes when they fall short. OVPD personnel live by the motto of “Continuous Improvement.” Moreover, accountability also pertains to our community. I hold the community accountable and expect them to report crimes and suspicious activity. We are all in this together, and this principle illustrates the partnership that must exist between the police and its community. Paraphrasing, Sir Robert Peele said, “The people are the police and the police are the people.” This concept is illustrative of how we approach safety in our community.  Problem solving is our commitment to working with all members of the regional community to identify issues of concern and proactively address them. Our approach to this goes well beyond our town’s borders. This means we work with our law enforcement partners (local, state and federal), the business community, neighborhoods and schools. Our responsibility is to proactively problem solve and prevent it before it affects the safety and quality of life within our community. 

  • Monsoon season 2014

    Tucson has received about 3.18 inches of rain during the monsoon season so far. Though very little rain fell this past weekend in the area, a fair amount of lightning has been seen throughout the northwest. The monsoon season officially ends Sept. 30.

  • The Planning Center, Golden Goose to receive county awards

    The Pima County Small Business Commission has selected The Planning Center and the Golden Goose Thrift Shop to receive its 2014 Small Business of the Year Awards.The Planning Center, 110 S. Church St., Suite 6320, was the urban small business winner. The Golden Goose, 15970 N. Oracle Road in Catalina, was the rural small business winner. The awards are sponsored by the Pima County Small Business Commission, and each winner will receive a $500 prize. Funding for the $500 rural prize is provided by Pima County Board of Supervisors Chair Sharon Bronson, District 3, and funding for the $500 urban prize is provided by the Pima County Economic Development and Tourism Department.The Planning Center, a private consulting firm founded in California in 1975, opened an office in Tucson in 1984. In 2000, the Tucson office was acquired by employees and has been owned and operated entirely by Tucson residents ever since. It works with both the private and public sectors, especially in the areas of master plans, general plans, general plan updates and entitlements. Employing 14, it has established a trademark for excellence in land planning, community visioning and urban design. Golden Goose was started in 2003 with a handful of volunteers, a garage, an empty trailer, a borrowed pickup and a vision for helping northern Pima County residents. It has grown into a successful nonprofit resale business in a nearly 13,000 square foot building with five paid employees and hundreds of volunteers. It has donated all of its proceeds – more than $6 million – to Impact of Southern Arizona (formerly Catalina Community Services and Helping Hands) and SaddleBrooke Community Outreach.The Small Business of the Year Award was presented to the Microbusiness Advancement Center in 2010; Gasoline Alley, an automobile repair and restoration business in Green Valley, in 2011; the Joint Technical Education District in 2012; and Casa de los Niños Thrift Store and Ajo Transportation in 2013.

  • GOP poll Has Ducey lead growing, Horne and Brnovich Neck and Neck

    The Arizona Free Enterprise Club today released our latest poll on the GOP primary, focusing on the Governor’s and Attorney General Race. The Club’s in depth poll, conducted by the Tarrance Group, shows Doug Ducey expanding his lead over rivals Christine Jones and Scott Smith. Among likely voters, Ducey is in first at 28 percent, with Smith at 20 percent and Jones at 18 percent. Ducey’s lead is in large part because of his high name ID (91 percent) and his strong favorability. While Smith has improved his standing from our last poll, he is struggling to overcome low name ID among both likely Republican (62 percent) and Independent voters (54 percent).  There has been a lot of speculation that a large Independent turnout might help Scott Smith down the stretch, but that does not appear to be the case. In fact, Ducey is leading with Independent voters over Smith, 22 percent to 20 percent, and Ducey maintains high favoribility among this key demographic. In the Attorney General Race, Horne has a small three-point lead over challenger Mark Brnovich, 42 percent to 39 percent. This race is very close because of Horne’s poor image ratings.  His name ID is quite high at ninety-one percent (91 percent), but only 34 percent of GOP primary voters indicate that they have a favorable impression of him, while 40 percent indicate that they have an unfavorable impression of him.   His negatives are higher than his favorable ratings among both registered Republicans and registered Independents who will vote in the primary.The live telephone poll was conducted Aug. 11 through the 13, included a partisan split of 90 percent Rep/10 percent Ind and has a 4.5-percent margin of error.For additional questions regarding the poll methodology and summary, contact Dave Sackett with the Tarrance Group at (703) 684-6688.

  • Donations needed for annual “Gifts of Love” program

    Interfaith Community Services needs help collecting school supplies for its annual Gifts of Love distribution that begins at the end of the month.The nonprofit social services agency located at 2820 W. Ina Road has gathered together enough materials to serve 50 of the 400 children it is planning to help.For the past nine years, ICS has distributed school supplies via Gifts of Love, which is supported entirely through donations from the community. Last year, a line wrapped around the ICS building on the designated distribution day as ICS volunteers gave away 410 backpacks filled with basic school supplies – notebook paper, spiral notebooks, pens, pencils, glue sticks, crayons, pocket folders and more, depending on a student’s grade level – to families experiencing financial hardship. Many more were turned away when supplies ran out. Julie Berson got supplies for two elementary-aged daughters and a third in high school. “We are low-income, and back-to-school every year is tough,” she said. Because she was able to secure school supplies for free, she could buy school clothes for the children, she said. Several backpack recipients visited the independent ICS Food Bank after putting school supplies into their cars. Census data show that one in five children in the United States live in poverty, which in turn affects their educational opportunities and outcomes. In Tucson, the rate is one in three.

  • Golder Ranch Fire District receives award

    Golder Ranch Fire District has been awarded the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting by the Government Finance Officers’ Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) for our 2013 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR). This is the highest form of recognition for governmental accounting and reporting. Attaining this certificate is a significant accomplishment by a government and its management.Additionally, Golder Ranch Finance Manager Dave Christian has been recognized with an Award of Financial Reporting Achievement for his preparation of the award winning CAFR. This is the fourth year in a row that Golder Ranch Fire District and Finance Manager Dave Christian have received these honors from the GFOA.“We are thrilled that for the fourth year in a row, the hard work and dedication of our finance team have been recognized,” said Fire Chief Randy Karrer. “The District will continue to operate in a transparent and fiscally responsible manner in order to achieve excellence in the years ahead.”The GFOA is a non-profit professional association serving approximately 17, 500 government finance professionals.

  • Fortis acquires UNS Energy

    Fortis Inc. (TSX:FTS) completed its acquisition of UNS Energy Corporation (NYSE: UNS) today, adding UNS Energy subsidiaries Tucson Electric Power (TEP) and UniSource Energy Services (UES) to its growing international family of electric and gas utility companies. TEP and UES will remain headquartered in Tucson under local control with current management and staffing levels and no planned changes to existing operations. Under the terms of a written order issued by the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) on Aug. 12, both companies will have enhanced financial strength and other benefits as part of Fortis, while their Arizona customers will receive $30 million in bill credits over the next five years. “Joining the Fortis family will generate benefits for our company, our customers and the communities we serve,” said David Hutchens, President and CEO of UNS Energy, TEP and UES. “While this transaction opens a new chapter in our company’s history, our story remains the same. We will continue working every day to provide the safe, reliable and affordable service our customers have come to expect.”With the $4.5 billion acquisition, which includes the assumption of $2 billion in debt, UNS Energy becomes the second largest subsidiary of Fortis and expands that company’s customer base to more than 3 million. Fortis is Canada’s largest investor-owned electric and gas distribution holding company, with regulated utility holdings in Canada, the United States and the Caribbean.  “TEP and UES are well-run companies whose employees are committed to serving their customers and communities,” said Fortis President Barry Perry, who will succeed H. Stanley Marshall as the company’s CEO effective Dec.31.  “We welcome both companies to the Fortis team and look forward to supporting their continued success in serving their customers’ energy needs.” 

  • Old Tucson to host Nightfall seasonal hiring fair

    Old Tucson will hold a hiring fair on Saturday, Aug. 23, from 2 to 5 p.m. Old Tucson anticipates approximately 100 openings for its upcoming season including its popular Nightfall promotion.The hiring fair provides candidates an opportunity to meet with representatives from various Old Tucson Company departments and to submit completed applications to the Human Resources Dept. Open positions include bartenders, security personnel, street atmosphere, attractions attendants, and cashiers for departments including guest relations, merchandise and food service. Behind the scenes positions include cooks, dishwashers, cash office cashiers and more.The hiring fair will be held at Old Tucson on Saturday, August 23 from 2:00 to 5:00 pm. Candidates should park in the Old Tucson guest parking lot and enter through the Front Gate. From there, they will be directed to the Grand Palace Hotel & Saloon for a brief orientation followed by interviews held at several locations within the park.Applicants are encouraged to complete applications in advance; however, applications also may be completed at the Hiring Fair. Applications and additional information are available online at Due to Nightfall operating hours and local Youth Employment hours restrictions, Nightfall applicants must be 16 years or older. Old Tucson is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Drug-Free Workplace.Old Tucson is Southern Arizona’s premier film location and Hollywood’s most famous Western movie location recognized in more than 300 feature films and TV Westerns. For more information about Old Tucson, visit, or call 883-0100. Old Tucson is located in Tucson Mountain Park at 201 S. Kinney Road in Tucson.

  • Couple displaced after house fire

    Northwest Fie District crews responded to the 11,400 block on North Vista Ranch Place near Thornydale and Tangerine Roads just after 4:00pm for a house fire.  The residents were preparing for a dinner party when they saw fire coming from their microwave oven.  The couple and a neighbor who was over for the dinner were able to evacuate safely and call 9-1-1.The first engine company arrived within 4 minutes and stretched a hose-line into the front door towards the kitchen area.  The crew was met by heavy smoke and fire along the cabinet area above the microwave.  Additional crews arrived and were able to control the fire within 9 minutes of their arrival.  A crew was sent to the roof to ensure that the fire had not spread through the oven vent systems and into the attic space.Arriving fire crews were also met by an activated residential sprinkler head in the kitchen area.  This system operated as it is designed to by triggering a flow of water in the area and is credited with keeping the fire in check and not allowing it to spread any farther than the area of origin. Northwest Fire investigators were able to determine that the fire was accidental caused by a mechanical failure with the microwave.  Damages as a result of the smoke and fire are estimated to be approximately $10,000. The couple, a 68 year-old male and a 60 year-old female, who own the home were displaced as a result of the damages from the fire. Northwest Fie District urges everyone to consider installing residential sprinkler systems into their new construction.  Older homes can be retrofitted with sprinkler systems as well.  Always have a charged fire extinguisher at the ready.

  • Straney self funds campaign, Hiremath accepts contributions

    While there it is clear the Oro Valley mayoral candidates have different management styles, another big difference in this election cycle is campaign finances.While challenger Pat Straney is sticking with a grass-roots campaign that has him using $1,800 of his own money to campaign, current Mayor Satish Hiremath has out-gained his opponent through contributions from citizens and developers.According to public records, HSL Properties, which is building a new complex in town limits, has given Hiremath's reelection efforts nearly $7,000 in recent years.HSL Properties is built the 288-unit Encantada Ranch at Steam Pump Village. The apartment complex was recently opened to the public.Hiremath has also received nearly $3,000 from local developer Diamond Ventures.

  • Wells Fargo Arizona collects over 19 tons of food in annual drive

    Wells Fargo Arizona’s team members collected 39,328 pounds of food during the company’s statewide food drive that took place June 10-24. The amount of food collected was equivalent to providing 66,124 meals and benefitted Association of Arizona Food Banks members throughout the state at a time when the need is so great.Food collection bins were placed in all Wells Fargo Community Banking stores, Mortgage and Finance stores and the company’s processing and operations facilities located throughout the state.Arizona food banks collectively distributed 139.4 million pounds of food in 2013 – equivalent to 72,625 meals per 1,600 sites, or 199 meals each day. People who wish to donate cash can send checks to their local food banks or to the Association of Arizona Food Banks whose mission is to deliver food and quality services to food banks and to foster relationships in support of their commitment to eliminate hunger.“As America’s – and Arizona’s -- Community Bank, we are proud of our 15,000 Arizona team members who continue to be so dedicated to supporting our communities throughout the state,” said Pam Conboy, lead regional president for Wells Fargo in Arizona. “Team members collected food, volunteered and truly gave their all for this food drive and it has become an event that all look forward participating in each year.” Needs of families and individuals around the state continue to be strong, according to the Association of Arizona Food Banks:· Nearly 1 in 5 Arizonans (17.8 percent), including more than 1 in 4 children (28.2 percent), suffer from food insecurity – meaning they do not have regular access to enough food for a healthy, active life.

  • Fast Response busts burglary in progress

     On August 18, 2014, at approximately 1:25 p.m., deputies with the Sheriff’s Rincon District responded to a 9-1-1 call about a burglary in progress. Deputies arrived at the incident location in the 3600 block of North Soldier Trail in less than 4 minutes.Upon arrival, they noticed a white Pontiac G6 sedan in the driveway. The vehicle was backed up against the garage. In the driver’s seat was a female, later identified as 39-year-old Shannon Spooner. In the passenger seat was her 1 ½ year-old infant child. As deputies had blocked her escape route with their patrol cars, the woman surrendered into their custody.A 15-year-old male and his 43-year-old father came running out of the main entrance to the residence. Both of them were taken into custody as well. The adult was later identified as Sonny Conrad.Detectives with the Sheriff’s Burglary Unit responded to the scene to conduct their investigation. They determined that the two males apparently forced entry into the home by breaking a window on the backside of the house. Detectives also had access to surveillance footage from another recent burglary at a different location that appeared to show the suspect’s vehicle. A possible connection is being investigated.The infant was turned over into the custody of a relative. Child Protective Services was notified of the incident. Conrad had two unrelated misdemeanor warrants. He was also charged with 2nd Degree Burglary and Child Abuse. Spooner was charged with Conspiracy to Commit 2nd Degree Burglary and Child Abuse. The 15-year-old juvenile was charged with 2nd Degree Burglary.

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