Has Arizona outgrown its Government Structure?

SBINSIDER| January 2023

The guest speaker at the January SaddleBrooke Republican Club meeting was Kevin DeMenna, a Senior Advisor at DeMenna Public Affairs in Phoenix. DeMenna works with the firm’s public affairs, government relations, and political consulting clients. Kevin has an extensive background in Arizona
politics and policy development.

DeMenna bases his proposals on the idea  that “Arizona has outgrown its government.” He is promoting changes to the political process here in Arizona by promoting the following ideas:

(1) Boosting legislative pay

Today, legislators are paid $24,000 a year plus a per diem rate when in session. To attract better candidates and more dedicated full-time legislators, DeMenna argues that it makes sense to pay legislators more. His argument is that it will improve the caliber of the person who runs for office and reduces the temptation of receiving money on the side. If you pay more, you can expect more.

(2) Nixing term limits
In reality, all elected officials are under term limits. As voters, if we don’t approve of our elected representatives, we can vote for someone else. By enforcing term limits, you remove people
from positions where they have gained experience and the trust of the voters.

(3) Revising the Voter Protection Act
The public does not trust the legislature. It now requires a super-majority in both chambers to change a voter enacted law. It is too difficult to manage a state when you are not able to adjust
portions of the law.

(4) Changing the process for passing laws
The majority of action at the legislature is done in the middle, not on the extremes.​

(5) Fixing how we gather public input
The public is disengaged. We need to get the public engaged. A more modern view of citizen participation might be to have geographically well-positioned zoom stations.
(6) Making the Capitol Mall safer  The Capitol Mall is the area where citizens go to express their opinions and make their voices heard. This is increasingly less possible because the area is not as safe as it once was.

The SaddleBrooke Republican Club meets monthly to act as a forum for conservative ideas. The next meeting will be Tuesday, February 14th and features Jenna Bentley who represents the Goldwater Institute. For more information visit the SBRC website at SaddleBrooke Republican Club (saddlebrooke-republican-club.org)

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