Arizona voters to decide state sovereignty

May 02, 2012

Arizona voters will get to decide whether to take away Washington, D.C.’s authority over the state’s land, air, water and other natural resources. From Phoenix, KJZZ’s Mark Brodie reports.

MARK BRODIE: If approved by voters, the state would declare sovereignty over its air, land, water, minerals, wildlife and other natural resources -- except for those on Indian reservations, and those ceded by the state to the feds. Heber Republican Chester Crandell, the measure’s sponsor, says its critics seem to be OK with the federal government in control.

CHESTER CRANDELL: Those who have voted red up on the board are willing to sit around and allow the Forest Service and the BLM and other agencies from the federal government to come in and completely take over everything that’s in our state boundaries.

BRODIE: The measure also says the state would no longer accept the provisions of the Enabling Act that made Arizona a state, as it relates to how land is given and used. Flagstaff Democrat Tom Chabin says that’s not a good idea.

TOM CHABIN: Can you envision that this could be viewed by greater Arizona as an effort to unstitch the Arizona star from the American flag?

BRODIE: The State Senate approved the measure earlier this week, after previously rejecting it. The House’s 38-20 vote Wednesday sends the proposal to November’s ballot.