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Across the U.S., as many as 29,000 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients may be working in health care jobs that are on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19, according to one recent report. Thousands more work in teaching and food industries, the report claims.

An estimated 29,000 health care workers in the U.S. are undocumented, according to a recent report, but have remained in this country under the DACA program. A program that the Trump administration is trying to abolish. Read more»

The government said it authorized the 'lethal removal' – killing – of four endangered Mexican gray wolves in one week on March only as a last resort, when other measures to control the animals did not work. The action came after several months of wolves preying on cows and calves in the area.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service authorized the killing of four endangered Mexican gray wolves in New Mexico during one week in late March, a move conservation groups call a significant setback to wolf recovery. Read more»

The Phoenix metro area experienced 153 days with high ozone or particulate metter levels in 2018, just one reason environmental groups want stricter standards. But the EPA said Tuesday it would not expand the rule on air pollution regarding particular matter in the air.

The Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday it will not expand Obama-era air quality standards, a move environmentalists call “the wrong thing to be doing” during a global pandemic that threatens lung health. Read more»

Gun shop owners in Arizona attribute a sudden rush to buy guns in March to fears that COVID-19 would shut down gun shops, along with other businesses, or would thin the ranks of local police agencies. The file photo above is from a gun show in Houston.

Arizona processed a record 82,771 background checks on would-be gun buyers in March, as fears of the coronavirus drove people to gun shops in what one shop owner called “panic time.” Read more»

The Agriculture Department added Arizona to the list of states where people can use Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits – SNAP, or food stamps – to buy their groceries online. Read more»

The Environmental Protection Agency lashed out against critics of its decision to ease enforcement of some reporting requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic, saying the policy had been distorted by opponents. But environmental groups were not convinced, saying it creates a “catch me if you can” situation for polluters.

The Environmental Protection Agency this week defended its plans to waive some environmental compliance requirements in the face of the coronavirus, insisting the temporary policy is “not a license to pollute.” Read more»

Unemployment was at historic lows just weeks ago, but that has started to turn around as the coronavirus is felt in the economy. The Labor Department said 3.3 million people filed jobless claims last week, a record high and 3 million more than week before. Arizona has also seen claims skyrocket.

New unemployment claims rose to almost 3.3 million last week, an increase of 3 million over the previous week and the highest on record, according to numbers released Thursday by the Labor Department. Read more»

An executive order by Gov. Doug Ducey identifies groceries, pharmacies, health care and home care services, gas stations and more as “essential services” that cannot be shuttered by local governments in response to the coronavirus. But it also lists parks, trails, laundries and pawn brokers as essential, raising eyebrows among some mayors.

Arizona mayors Tuesday questioned Gov. Doug Ducey’s inclusion of golf courses, pawnshops, laundries and other businesses in the definition of “essential services” that local governments would be barred from closing in response to the coronavirus. Read more»

Congress passed, and the president signed, the second multibillion-dollar coronavirus relief bill in as many weeks on Wednesday. Lawmakers and the administration now say they need a stimulus package of up to $1 trillion to offset economic harm from COVID-19.

The Senate gave overwhelming approval Wednesday to a multibillion-dollar coronavirus relief bill, the second such bill in two weeks, and immediately turned its attention to a third bill that could have a $1 trillion price tag. Read more»

Scott Cameron, principal deputy assistant Interior secretary for policy management and budget, talks with Buckeye Mayor Jackie A. Meck, right, before a Senate hearing on the threat that invasive species pose to water supplies in the West.

Buckeye Mayor Jackie A. Meck said drinking water is scarce enough for cities in the West – they don’t need to be competing with invasive species for it, too. Read more»

Witnesses wait for House hearing on the impact that a Supreme Court ruling on online sales tax has had on small businesses. From right, they are Linda Lester, vice president of K-Log Inc., Kevin Mahoney, president and founder of FindTape and Brad Scott, finance director for Prescott-based Halstead Beads Inc.

Prescott businessman Brad Scott told lawmakers Tuesday that a Supreme Court ruling that was supposed to help small businesses compete against online retailers is instead threatening to drive small firms like his out of business. Read more»

Tohono O’odham Chairman Ned Norris Jr. teared up at one point as he testified how blasting of sites for border wall construction has “totally destroyed” and 'forever damaged' his people.

An emotional Tohono O’odham Nation chairman told lawmakers Wednesday that blasting on sacred sites in national monuments to build a border wall near his reservation has “forever damaged our people.” Read more»

Scouts at a camp in Washington in 2015. The Boy Scouts of America, faced with up to $1 billion in potential damages from sexual abuse lawsuits, filed for bankruptcy, but Arizona officials said Scouting on the state and local level will not be affected.

Arizona officials said Boy Scouting in the state will not be affected by the Boy Scouts of America’s decision to file for bankruptcy Tuesday as the national group grapples with up to $1 billion in damages from decades of sexual abuse lawsuits. Read more»

In this March 2019 file photo, Cindy Harrison rallies in Phoenix in support of the Equal Rights Amendment. Arizona has never approved the ERA, one of just 12 states not to have done so, but Virginia’s recent ratification led the U.S. House to remove a deadline for states’ ratification in hopes of reviving the amendment.

Arizona lawmakers split on party lines Thursday as the House voted to give the Equal Rights Amendment another chance by removing the deadline for states to ratify the proposed constitutional amendment. Read more» 1

Utah Republican Rep. Rob Bishop, left, and Arizona Democratic Rep. Raul Grijalva, the ranking member and chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, disagree on most issues before the panel. The question of subpoenaing administration officials was no exception, with Bishop opposed and Grijalva in favor.

The House Natural Resources Committee granted Chairman Raul Grijalva the authority to subpoena administration officials, after committee Democrats said they were “left with no choice” in the face of bureaucrats’ resistance. Read more»

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