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>> This information is provided in community partnership with Harkins Theatres. For showtimes, theater locations and tickets, go to HarkinsTheatres.com.
Funeral services for a Chandler police officer killed in a wreck while driving to work have been scheduled for this weekend.
Suns put on show in rout of Lakers.
Isaiah Thomas scored 23 points in his Phoenix debut, Marcus Morris matched his career high with five 3-pointers and the Suns dominated the Lakers 119-99.
A new pizza restaurant has opened in Tempe, just a short walk away from ASU's Sun Devil Stadium.
Two Republicans and a pair of Democrats are seeking seats on the Arizona Corporation Commission in Tuesday’s election.
The Daily News-Sun asked them to comment on the top issues facing the ACC.
Name: Sandra Kennedy
• There is no longer a consumer advocate on the commission.
• I want to restore an emphasis on creating solar energy jobs.
Name: Doug Little
Occupation: Former computer software industry expert
• The aging water infrastructure in many communities.
• The negative impact on the economy associated with potentially significant increases in the cost of energy associated with the implementation of proposed EPA mandates.
I am committed to be the champion of the ratepayer and work to ensure that all Arizonans have access to clean reliable energy and water at the lowest possible price. We will achieve this with a balanced energy portfolio that leverages all of the different types of energy generation in the most cost-effective fashion.
Name: Jim Holway
Occupation: Land use and water resources planner
• We must ensure Arizona will have reliable and affordable water and power in an era of increasing costs, ongoing droughts and greater reliance on intermittent renewable supplies, changing technology and more stringent environmental controls.
Specific actions include: utility resource plans that address Arizona’s future uncertainty and changing needs; support for solar energy innovation, production and jobs in Arizona while also utilizing our coal, nuclear and natural gas resources; and assisting investments in conservation and efficiency.
• The current debate about solar energy in general and the new solar (net metering) tax on residential customers in particular. The ACC should commission an objective, long-term and comprehensive economic study looking at the costs and benefits of not only solar and other renewable supplies, but for other energy supplies as well.
Name: Tom Forese
Occupation: Current state legislator, owner of the Hive.
• We have nine different departments setting the price for utilities and we need to have balance to keep rates low as possible.
• I’m looking to keep things safe and fair but keep costs as minimal as possible. I have a voting record against unneccesary regulations and tax increases. My commitment is to find the balance. My background is technology and I think we’ll see amazing things for solar. We don’t want to harm the solar industry or the businesses. There’s balance in both areas.
The public is invited to a special event on Friday, Nov. 7, at 1 p.m. in the auditorium located at 1495 E. Ranch Vistoso Blvd. The program will feature Golder Ranch Fire Department EMS Battalion Chief Josh Hurguy and Oro Valley Water Utility Conservationist Karn Boyce.
Climate change and global warming are two things that seem to be on the tip of everyone’s tongue. But John Purchase, a retired physicist and engineer, said not many people know what they’re talking about.
Mesa’s Sun Valley High School is mourning the loss of a beloved friend after teacher Marcus Reid was killed in a motorcycle accident earlier this month. Students and faculty at the school worked together to plan funeral services for the man who had no legal family but counted his peers and students as such.
Former student Kiana Brunson speaks during the funeral service for Sun Valley High School teacher Marcus Reid at Heart of Mesa Church in Mesa on Friday, Oct. 24, 2014.
After an emotional speech, student Vincent Buttafuoco walks back to his seat during the funeral service for Sun Valley High School teacher Marcus Reid at Heart of Mesa Church in Mesa on Friday, Oct. 24, 2014.
A Stormtrooper hemlet signed with messages for Sun Valley High School teacher Marcus Reid during his funeral service at Heart of Mesa Church in Mesa on Friday, Oct. 24, 2014.
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — The number of people who died trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico border has dropped to the lowest level in 15 years as more immigrants turned themselves in to authorities in Texas and fewer took their chances with the dangerous trek across the Arizona desert.
The U.S. government recorded 307 deaths in the 2014 fiscal year that ended in September — the lowest number since 1999. In 2013, the number of deaths was 445.
The Border Patrol's Rio Grande Valley sector finished the 2014 budget year with 115 deaths, compared with 107 in the Tucson sector, according to figures obtained by The Associated Press. It marks the first time since 2001 that Arizona has not been the deadliest place to cross the border.
Arizona has long been the most dangerous border region because of triple-digit temperatures, rough desert terrain and the sheer volume of immigrants coming in to the state from Mexico. But more immigrants are now entering through Texas and not Arizona, driven by a surge of people from Central America.
The Tucson and Rio Grande Valley both saw their numbers of deaths decline from 2013, although Arizona's drop was more precipitous.
Border enforcement officials say the lower numbers are in part due to increased rescue efforts as well as a Spanish-language media campaign discouraging Latin Americans from walking across the border.
Tucson Sector Division Chief Raleigh Leonard says the addition of 10 new rescue beacons that were strategically placed in areas where immigrants traverse most often has been a factor in the decrease in deaths.
"I think we can all agree that crossing the border is an illegal act, but nothing that should be assigned the penalty of death," Leonard said in an interview.
Immigrant rights advocates are skeptical that it is solely the Border Patrol's efforts contributing to the decrease in deaths.
"At best, what the Border Patrol is accomplishing is a geographical shift in where these deaths are happening — rather than adequately responding to the scale of the crisis," said Geoffrey Boyce, a border enforcement and immigration researcher at the University of Arizona and a volunteer with the Tucson-based nonprofit No More Deaths.
The Rio Grande Valley sector was flooded with a surge in unaccompanied minors and families with children who turned themselves in at border crossings in Texas. Most were from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, where gang violence and a poor economy have driven out huge numbers of people. That surge has dwindled recently, however, as U.S. and Central American authorities have launched a public relations campaign warning parents against sending their children to the U.S.
Meanwhile, the Tucson Sector, once the busiest in the nation, has seen a steep decline in border crossers. Fewer Mexicans are crossing into the U.S. as the economy here has faltered and drug violence at home has improved.
The Border Patrol also responds to hundreds of cases each year of immigrants who need to be rescued while crossing the desert, long an issue in the Arizona desert. The Border Patrol conducted 509 rescues in the 2014 fiscal year in the Tucson sector, compared to 802 in 2013.
Some of the rescues are made with the help of beacons that were activated 142 times this year. The beacons are 30-feet tall, solar-powered and have sun reflectors and blue lights on top that are visible for 10 miles. The beacons also have signs in three languages directing users to push a red button that sends out a signal for help. Agents respond usually within 10 minutes to an hour.
The agency has a team dedicated solely to rescues, called Border Patrol Search, Trauma, and Rescue.
Agents in this elite group spend their days searching for immigrants and responding when one seeks help. They assist not only those who cross the border in search for jobs, but also drug mules and smugglers who become injured or dehydrated in the summer heat.
It was only 10 a.m. and already 95 degrees on a day in late June when the unit's agents provided medical assistance to a 28-year-old man suspected of smuggling drugs near Sells, Arizona.
The thin man had an ID from El Salvador and said he lived in Tucson. He oscillated between Spanish and English, but his message was the same: He was in extreme pain.
The agents gave him a gallon of a sports beverage. He was to drink it slowly, they told him, or else it would make him sick. Next, they connected a saline bag intravenously and checked his vitals.
The agents monitored him and re-examined his vitals, concluding that he wasn't dehydrated but suffering from muscle fatigue. Minutes later, agents who used a drug-sniffing K-9 to search the area found several bundles of marijuana and another suspected smuggler.
The men were arrested on suspicion of being in the country illegally, but were not charged with smuggling because the loads of marijuana were not found on them.
"To us, it could be a mule, an illegal immigrant. They're all the same. They're human beings," Leonard said.
After over a decade of work on incredibly detailed paintings, Don Coen’s “Migrant Series” is making its world debut at the Phoenix Art Museum.
Three area teams remained ranked, with Ironwood Ridge holding the highest as the No. 3 team in Division 2. Pusch Ridge is eighth in Division 5, although they have their playoff berth wrapped up. Both the Nighthawks and CDO can clinched Sectional titles, and the automatic bids that accompany them this week with wins.
Sun Valley High School students in Mesa are working to arrange funeral services for Marcus Reid, a teacher with no immediate family who recently died after a motorcycle accident.
On the afternoon of Oct. 23, BASIS charter school in Mesa will host a viewing party for a partial eclipse of the sun, which will take place between 2:40 p.m. and 4:45 p.m.
Methodology: Each rank is assigned a point value based on the rank. The
Faster than a speeding bullet comes the comet Siding Spring, which will have the attention of UA scientists as it passes Mars on Oct. 19.
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — Former University of Arizona basketball star Steve Kerr and his wife have pledged $1 million toward the ongoing renovation of McKale Center and future academic facility enhancements.
McKale's renovation will impact all 20 of the Tucson school's sports programs and specifically men's and women's basketball, volleyball and gymnastics, which use McKale as their competition site.
Renovations are expected to be complete by the start of the basketball regular season for the Wildcats.
The first aspect of the renovation project was completed at the beginning of 2014 with the installation of a high-definition scoreboard.
Kerr now is the Golden State Warriors' coach and was the Phoenix Suns' general manager from 2007-10. His wife, Margot, also is a UofA alum.
Maria Tallchief was considered America’s first major prima ballerina and was the first Native American to hold such a distinction.