Monday, February 7, 2011

Arizona's dirty politics

Governor Jan Brewer Signs Law That Allows Forcible Annexation of Land, Leaves Property Owner Without Any Say - Phoenix News - Valley Fever

Governor Jan Brewer signed into law a measure that allows local governments to annex property without a property owner's consent under certain circumstances.

It is the latest attempt by desperate Glendale politicians to block the Tohono O'odham Nation from building a resort-style casino in the West Valley near the Phoenix Coyotes' hockey arena and the Arizona Cardinals' football stadium.

Nation leaders call the new law unconstitutional because it is special legislation -- a law tailored to allow Glendale to annex the Indian community's parcel of land near 91st and Northern avenues.

If Glendale is able to annex the Tohono O'odham Nation's land, city officials hope it will prevent the feds from taking that land into trust. When land is taken into trust for an Indian community, it becomes part of its reservation -- and casinos can only be built on reservations. However, if a piece of land already is part of a municipality, it can't be taken into trust. Thus, no reservation, no casino.

This recently signed law, supported entirely by Republican lawmakers, turned the usual annexation process on its head. And also was a shocking deviation from the party's usual support of individual property rights.

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