Dorn Policy Group

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In recent years, many Arizona employers have seen daunting challenges in funding their pension obligations. However, a transformative tool emerged in 2020 during the Fifty-Fourth Legislature, Second Regular Session – Senate Bill 1354 (S.B. 1354), which paved the way for the Arizona Employers’ Pension Prefunding Plan (AEPPP), a pioneering Section 115 trust program sponsored by the Public Safety Personnel Retirement System (PSPRS) Board and administered by Public Agency Retirement Services (PARS) in partnership with Vanguard and U.S. Bank. 

PARS and PSPRS have served as the major driving forces behind this initiative, which has assisted employers in proactively addressing their pension liabilities and stabilizing contribution costs. The AEPPP itself offers participating employers a structured framework to prefund their PSPRS obligations, providing stability and flexibility in pension management. The sponsor for this bill was Arizona Senator David Livingston, now a State Representative. 

PARS: The Catalyst for Positive Change in Pension Prefunding

As the trusted IRC Section 115 trust administrator, PARS played a central and pivotal role in pioneering pension prefunding trusts in Arizona, as they did in other states with over 300 local government clients using this concept. With unmatched specialization in IRC Section 115 trust management, compliance, and recordkeeping, PARS provided a level of assurance that employers’ pension assets were managed with utmost care and adhered to federal and state regulations. 

Unique Features Setting PARS Apart 

Some key features make this locally controlled PARS-PSPRS trust prudent for local governments in Arizona: 

Tailored Solutions 

PARS understands that each employer’s financial situation and pension needs are unique. As a result, the organization offers personalized solutions tailored to meet the specific requirements and goals of each employer participating in the AEPPP. 

Proactive Guidance 

PARS takes a proactive approach to support employers in navigating the intricacies of PSPRS cost and liability management using the trust program. Their team provides timely guidance and strategic insights, empowering employers to make informed decisions for long-term financial security. 

Comprehensive Support for Seamless Administration 

PARS extends comprehensive support to participating employers within the AEPPP. From the initial trust setup to ongoing administration, PARS streamlines the entire process, empowering employers to establish and maintain their pension reserve trust with ease. By entrusting the complexities of trust administration to PARS, employers gain the freedom to focus on their core responsibilities. 

Unparalleled Expertise in Prudent Investment Strategies 

One of the Section 115 trust program’s greatest strengths lies in Vanguard Institutional Advisory Services’ Pension Group and U.S Bank’s expertise in investment management. They offer employers tailored investment strategies designed exclusively for pension reserve funding. These strategies cater to employers’ risk tolerance and long-term financial goals, optimizing the growth potential of their prefunded assets versus keeping them in a Local Government Investment Pool or a county treasury pool. 

Transparency and Accountability 

Transparency and accountability are at the core of the principles in administering the AEPPP. Senate Bill 1354 emphasizes the importance of enhanced transparency, and with PARS’ support, employers benefit from local control in terms of contributions, disbursements and investment selections as well as consulting, auditing and reporting support. 

Empowering Arizona Employers 

PSPRS sponsored Senate Bill 1354 heralds a new era in pension contributions and costs management for Arizona local governments. The combined expertise of PARS, Vanguard, and U.S. Bank serving as the PSPRS designated providers gives employers seamless administration, prudent investment strategies, and enhanced transparency. 

As Arizona continues its commitment to pension sustainability, PARS’s pioneering pension prefunding trust empowers employers to secure the financial future of their workforce. Senate Bill 1354 has enabled a notable shift in pension prefunding practices for Arizona employers. PARS’ unwavering commitment to excellence and PSPRS’ role as the driving force behind the AEPPP make them the key catalysts for better pension management by bringing this new financial tool into the state’s pension landscape. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Advocates for Arizona

When you partner with a government relations firm like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., you’re not just getting our support. You gain an invaluable partner who advocates for your success. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, we’re experts in obtaining the results you need for success. Contact us today to learn more about our services and what we can do for you.

Person hiking a trail in the Arizona desert.

Arizona is home to the magnificent Arizona National Scenic Trail (AZT), an 800-mile corridor that winds its way through the state’s diverse landscapes, including mountains, canyons, deserts, forests, and wilderness areas. This premier long-distance trail attracts adventurers from around the world, offering a remarkable experience for non-motorized recreation. 

Over a span of 30 years, dedicated volunteers, through the Arizona Trail Association (ATA), built and maintained this iconic trail, making it the largest outdoor service project in the state’s history. 

The Arizona Trail Association and Its Importance

This trail owes its existence to the unwavering efforts of the Arizona Trail Association, an organization committed to protecting, maintaining, enhancing, promoting, and sustaining this unique, scenic area. The ATA manages a dedicated group of over 2,500 volunteers annually, many of whom undertake the responsibility of trail maintenance along the entire stretch from Mexico to Utah. These volunteers generously contribute over 20,000 hours of service annually, valued at an impressive $550,000.

Sustainability and Stewardship Programs

The ATA recognizes the importance of instilling a sense of stewardship and environmental appreciation in future generations. Through programs like Seeds of Stewardship, the ATA engages thousands of middle and high school students from communities along the Arizona Trail, educating and involving them in exploring and caring for the trail. 

Additionally, the ATA’s Veterans Program provides opportunities for military veterans to experience the Arizona Trail firsthand and participate in stewardship projects. The organization’s Volunteer Program, widely recognized as one of the most effective volunteer structures in the outdoor recreation community, recruits, trains, and empowers citizen stewards throughout the state.

Economic Impact

Beyond its intrinsic value as a recreational resource, the Arizona Trail also plays a pivotal role in Arizona’s economy. Recent studies have shown that Americans spent over $21 billion on outdoor recreation in Arizona from 2020 to 2021, supporting 201,000 jobs, generating $5.7 billion in wages, and contributing $1.4 billion in state and local tax revenue. 

Furthermore, research conducted by the University of Arizona revealed that in-state residents engage in non-motorized trail activities approximately 83,110,000 times per year, with an estimated 59.2% of Arizona’s adult population participating. The economic value derived from in-state residents’ non-motorized trail use amounts to an impressive $8.3 billion per year. 

S.B. 1714 and Its Importance

In recognition of the critical role played by the Arizona Trail and the Arizona Trail Association, Senator Gowan, representing LD 19, sponsored S.B. 1714. 

What is S.B. 1714?

This legislation seeks to appropriate $250,000 to the Arizona Trail Fund, a necessary step to support priority trail construction and maintenance projects. With recent catastrophic wildfires ravaging over 100 miles of the trail, the ATA’s efforts in wildfire mitigation, landscape restoration, and forest health initiatives have become paramount. By securing state funding, Arizona ensures the long-term preservation of this valuable recreational resource, safeguarding the state’s investment while promoting the health, well-being, and quality of life of its residents.

Why It Matters

S.B. 1714 represents a significant milestone in Arizona’s commitment to preserving and enhancing the Arizona National Scenic Trail. As the popularity of the Arizona Trail grows, it is imperative to recognize the economic, environmental, and recreational value it brings to the state. 

Through collaborative efforts and continued support, Arizona residents, along with organizations like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., will ensure that this awe-inspiring trail remains an enduring symbol of its commitment to natural preservation and outdoor adventure.

Success with S.B. 1714

Dorn Policy Group was successful in acquiring significant funding for the Arizona National Scenic Trail by securing the original requested amount of $250,000, along with an additional $250,000, for a notable total of $500,000.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Advocates for Arizona

When you partner with a government relations firm like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., you’re not just getting our support. You gain an invaluable partner who advocates for your success. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, we’re experts in obtaining the results you need for success. Contact us today to learn more about our services and what we can do for you.

Health care researchers working in life science lab

Arizona’s focus on life science and health innovation is important for both our state’s citizens and life science national ranking alike. Our state’s innovators are constantly working to develop pioneering treatments and cures that can help the quality of life for all Arizonans. These healthcare initiatives relate closely to the quality of life for our state’s citizens including troops, veterans, and the seniors who helped build the country we currently live in.

What is The Arizona Health Innovation Trust Fund (AHIT)?

The Arizona Health Innovation Trust Fund (AHIT) was established in 2022 under Arizona Revised Statute section 41-177. AHIT represents a lasting endowment fund that encompasses money continually allocated by public and private funding. On an annual basis, the Arizona State Treasurer is responsible for allocating four percent of the monetary resources within AHIT to an entity that fulfills a set of specific requirements. This is a permanent endowment that provides annual distributions to a 501c3 non-profit that:

  • Provides entrepreneurial education, mentoring, and support to persons in the health innovation and healthcare delivery sectors.
  • Provides programs that support workforce development. 
  • Provides programs that support the development and commercialization of health innovation.
  • Has entered into an endowment agreement with the treasurer that includes investment procedures, maturity timelines, other requirements established by the Treasurer, and entity reporting requirements. 

This non-profit entity must submit an annual report, as prescribed by the Treasurer, to the Governor, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the Treasurer by each December 31. 

This eligible entity must first and foremost be a charitable organization. Furthermore, it should provide valuable support to individuals engaged in the health innovation and healthcare delivery sectors, including entrepreneurial education, mentoring, and guidance. Additionally, it should offer programs that contribute to workforce development, as well as initiatives that promote the advancement and commercialization of health innovation. 

The Importance of Health Science Innovation

Arizona’s status as a health innovation center means there are constant developments moving forward in the state’s medical space and plenty of breakthroughs awaiting in the discovery pipeline. 

These exciting ideas require the necessary resources to fully thrive in the Arizona innovation landscape. The innovators and entrepreneurs working hard in the medical space can benefit from initiatives like AHIT by using accumulated funds to help progress their medical projects forward in research and development.  The focus of the fund emphasizes the smaller bioscience ventures that exist to propel Arizona’s medical innovation setting into the future. Rather than being a cost to the state, AHIT should be seen as a great investment for the state itself and for its inhabitants. 

The important medical projects being developed in the state vary in purpose but serve many crucial outcomes. Medical advancements are being made in areas such as:

  • Screenings and Diagnostics
  • Drugs, Biologics, and Vaccines
  • Medical Devices and Tools
  • Health IT

Arizona’s focus on life science and health innovation through initiatives like AHIT  demonstrates the state’s commitment to improving the quality of life for its citizens. The investments made in the health innovation sector, along with the expertise of organizations like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., further solidify Arizona’s position as a leading hub for life sciences.

If you or your organization would like more information on how to support The Arizona Health Innovation Trust Fund or attend the annual Ponte Cura, The Bridge To Cures benefit supporting The Arizona Health Innovation Trust Fund through AZAdvances on September 29, 2023 visit

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Advocates for Arizona

When you partner with a government relations firm like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., you’re not just getting our support. You gain an invaluable partner who advocates for your success. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, we’re experts in obtaining the results you need for success. Contact us today to learn more about our services and what we can do for you. 

Arizona Highway Users

As one of Arizona’s leading professional lobbying and public affairs firms, we strive to provide the best possible services in the state. One of the partnerships we’re proud of is with Arizona Highway Users (AHU). AHU works with Arizona businesses to maintain and improve road safety and mobility. We’re honored to partner with a client like AHU to continue to improve Arizona for its residents.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. was founded on the belief that integrity, tenacity, and client results should be the cornerstones of quality government relations. Businesses deserve to have their voices heard, and we’re honored to be the ones to spread their message. Read our article below to learn how we ensure Arizona Highway Users’ voice gets heard. 

Who Are Arizona Highway Users?

Arizona Highway Users advocates for improved, safe highway systems that are free of traffic and that enhance mobility. They fight for the preservation and improvement of road access to all Arizona drivers. As our population continues to see a dramatic increase, more drivers are on the road which can lead to congested travel flow. Dorn has partnered with Arizona Highway Users to ensure adequate and increased highway funding.

What Does Dorn Policy Group Do for Arizona Highway Users?

Dorn Policy Group works with all levels of government to advocate for the needs of Arizona businesses. We provide strategic counsel and issue management for Arizona Highway Users to help advance their goals and objectives. 

Other ways that we assist Arizona Highway Users:

  • We constantly monitor what is happening in government and how these issues could potentially affect their business.
  • We assist in policy making, bill drafting, public testimony, coalition building, and ordinance drafting for Arizona Highway Users to advocate for their desired outcome.
  • Unite Arizona businesses for one common goal: maintain and improve our roads to promote safety and enhanced freedom of mobility. 

These are just a few of the many services we provide to our clients. With integrity and tenacity, we provide client results that help advance important issues within all levels of government. We understand how difficult it can be to have your voice heard by governmental leaders, so we are here to advocate for you and the goals of your organization. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Will Advocate For Your Business 

Advocacy is key when it comes to getting the results your business needs for success. Arizona Highway Users is just one example of many that show how we advocate and fight for our clients to be heard by government officials. With over 60 years of combined experience, Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is a leading lobbying and public affairs firm that will partner with you to help your organization reach its next level of success. Contact us today to learn more about our services, other clients, and what we can do for you. 

Stimulus Check

Finding money deposited to your bank account sounds like the start of a good day. Although, many Americans are curious about the impact stimulus checks issued by the Federal Government have on their taxes. Understanding the ripple effect of such unique income deposits is key when preparing for future tax expectations.

With three rounds of economic stimulus payments, advances on the child tax credit, along with increased unemployment benefits behind us, what do taxpayers need to know?

Stimulus Payments vs. Recovery Rebate Credit

To clarify, the recovery rebate credit is based on the information listed in your 2021 tax return, while the stimulus payment deems eligibility on what’s included in your 2019/20 tax return. What is important to note is that you may be eligible for one and not the other. For example, individuals receiving a stimulus payment the previous year are less likely to qualify for the recovery rebate credit. The credit was designed to assist individuals who were meant to receive an economic impact payment but did not. 

Quick Facts on Stimulus Payments and Your Taxes

Before we get into the details of the most common questions people are asking related to their taxes and stimulus payments, here are some quick facts you should know:

  • Third Round Stimulus funds are not taxable. This is good news and those who did not get the full amount of the stimulus checks may find the missing amount added to their refund. Also, getting the full amount should not impact your refund.
  • Claiming stimulus funds as income is a mistake. You could find yourself owing unnecessary taxes in addition to your regular amount.
  • You are not required to pay back amounts you receive that are more than you are eligible for.
  • Stimulus money received last year does not raise taxes owed this year.

While these facts may ease some taxpayer concerns; there are many other questions that arise. The intricacies of your personal situation and how your taxes are affected vary. However, here are some questions that address common tax issues.

Are college students eligible to receive stimulus checks?

Students that are not claimed as a dependent and are planning to file taxes may be eligible to receive stimulus money. Parents may opt to have their working student claim themselves as independent in order to receive the education credits and recovery rebate stimulus money that perhaps they would not be eligible for if included in their parent’s income.

How might I qualify for a higher stimulus amount?

Family additions in the previous tax year will result in a higher stimulus payment overall. Families that adopt, experience a birth, or take elderly parents into their care increase their expected stimulus amount. 

Where can I see exactly what stimulus amounts I have received along with any other credits?

It’s important to stay up-to-date on what you’ve received from the Federal Government in terms of stimulus payments and other credits. To keep you informed on these matters, the IRS will issue notifications via mail as well as provide your information on your IRS account online. You can create an account and login any time you need to retrieve relevant information or clear up any questions you have. You will need accurate and up-to-date information when managing your taxes.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Can Assist You

As one of the leading Arizona government relations firms, Dorn Policy Group, Inc. knows how important it is to handle sensitive financial matters with care. With such a large, diverse community, it can be difficult getting your voice heard. Contact us today and learn how we can help your business find success with strong government relations. 

Voter turnout

Exercising your right to vote is a fundamental part of what makes democracy work. Voter turnout in the United States is lower than in most established democracies. This voter disparity is even larger for elections held in years without a major nationwide election. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is one of Arizona’s top public affairs firms. We are advocacy professionals who strive to obtain the results our clients want. When it comes to your community, it is important to be informed and to have your voice heard. Voter turnout can have a major impact on the legislation addressing issues that you care about. Read our blog post below to learn more about voter turnout during off-year elections. 

What is Voter Turnout?

Voter turnout can help gauge political involvement and influence campaign outcomes. This metric is expressed as a percentage of a certain population who voted in a specific election. Popular ways to measure voter turnout include:

  • Voting age population turnout: a percentage of the population that is old enough to vote
  • Voting eligible population turnout: a percentage of eligible voters
  • Registered voter turnout: a percentage of registered voters

Off-Year Elections

Voter turnout regularly drops in these midterm and municipal elections compared to turnout for national elections and has done so since the 1840s. A year with no major nationwide election is referred to by Politico as an “off-year”.  These off-year elections tend to have a larger impact on day-to-day life than their larger national counterparts. Off-year elections decide which streets get repaved, how many police officers are patrolling your community, and when your trash gets collected.  

What Causes Low Voter Turnout?

Turnout varies by state, year, and election. Municipal off-year elections, as well as primary elections, tend to have lower turnout. Several factors impact voter turnout in both on and off-year elections: 

  • Voter Fatigue: When voters are asked to vote in a number of elections in a short period of time, voter fatigue can occur. It is not uncommon for voters who are asked to cast a ballot every few months to skip out on what they perceive as smaller elections.
  • Ballot Awareness: When voters are unaware of the impact that local races have on their everyday lives they are unlikely to attend local elections. The general impact of issues on municipal ballots is less commonly understood than for national elections.
  • Campaign Spend: The budget of a campaign has a direct correlation with the awareness of upcoming elections. Off-year elections tend to have lower campaign spending than higher-profile national campaigns.
  • Electoral Competitiveness: The perceived competitiveness of an election can encourage a voter to cast a ballot. According to FairVote, 69% of voters in the ten most competitive states cast a ballot in 2020, compared to the national average of 66%.

On-Years vs. Off-Years in Arizona

The disparity between on and off-year voter turnout plays a hand in Arizona elections. In Tucson, Arizona there are 260,000 registered voters. Less than 90,000 voters cast a ballot for the off-year mayoral election in 2019, while nearly half of Tucson registered voters returned a ballot in the prior year’s midterm elections.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Advocates for Voters

As one of the leading Arizona government relations firms, Dorn Policy Group, Inc. knows how important it is to be noticed by key elected officials and community leaders. With such a large, diverse community, it can be difficult getting your voice heard. Contact us today and learn how we can help your business find success with strong government relations. 


Phoenix, Arizona Life Sciences and Tax friendly

Arizona was recently placed in the top 10 most tax-friendly states and Phoenix was ranked as the number one city in the U.S. for life sciences employment growth. Cost of living and job opportunities are major factors for population growth. So, these economic and employment trends are demonstrating why so many people are relocating to Arizona. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is one of Arizona’s top public affairs firms. We are advocacy professionals who strive to obtain the results our clients want. In a growing community, it is important to have your voice heard by key policymakers. Read our blog post below and learn more about Arizona’s recent rankings and the effects these traits might have on population growth. 

Top 10 Tax-Friendly States

Kiplinger recently estimated the overall income, sales, and property tax in each state for a married couple with two children, combined wages of $77,000, and $3,000 of other income. They found that Arizona is the 9th most tax-friendly state of the 50 U.S states and the District of Columbia. Low-income taxes were noted as what separates Arizona from other states. Middle-income families don’t pay the state’s lowest rate of 2.59 percent, but they don’t pay a much higher rate at 3.34 percent. Arizona residents pay relatively low property taxes as well. The average property tax on a $300,000 home in Arizona is estimated to be only $1,851 per year. This is below the U.S. average property tax for a home at that price. As part of its budget discussions, the Arizona Legislature is considering accelerating the income tax reforms it passed last year. If passed, the reforms would increase Arizona’s tax friendly rank when compared to other states.

Phoenix is #1 For Life Sciences Growth

The Greater Phoenix area is emerging as a life science hub. Life sciences job growth in Phoenix grew 8.5 percent between 2019 and 2020. The city ended the year with approximately 22,000 jobs in the life sciences sector, the most of any U.S city. Phoenix has outpaced the job growth in other cities, even amid record expansion rates across the industry. The vacancy rate for existing lab and research space all across the United States is at a record low due to a global race for new drug development according to a new report from CBRE. Life sciences companies collectively took over nearly 23.8 million square feet of new lab space across the top 12 life science hub cities at the end of 2021.

With all-time highs in funding, job growth, demand for lab space, and new construction, trends suggest that the field and job market will continue to grow in the coming year. Phoenix-based leadership thinks that the overall idea of Phoenix as a hub for life sciences job growth is still expanding. “Phoenix continues to draw national attention as a hub for cancer diagnosis and treatment,” said First Vice President of CBRE, David Barrett. 

How These Rankings Might Affect The State

The job market and various costs affect population growth in every state. Workers are changing jobs more frequently and the availability of life science careers will likely be a large draw for new residents in the Phoenix area. The cost of living also plays into relocation decisions for most people and the financial difference between living in a high-tax state or a low-tax state can be thousands of dollars each year. Arizona’s job market and relatively low tax rate will likely play into population growth for years to come.

Dorn Policy Group is a Proud Arizona Government Relations Firm

Dorn Policy Group was founded in 2000 on the belief that integrity, tenacity, and client results should be the cornerstones of public affairs. We work with all levels and departments of government to ensure the demands of our community and clients are met. Contact us today and learn how we can help you enhance your government relations.  

Arizona State Budget

Like other states, Arizona lawmakers and public officials are elected in part to manage the state’s finances. State budgets are volatile, as they depend on anticipated revenues and planned expenditures, which may alter over the course of a fiscal year. When revenues do not keep pace with expenditures, states may decide to raise taxes, cut services, borrow money, or a combination of the three. For Arizona’s FY2023 budget, Governor Doug Ducey proposes a $14.25 billion budget.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is one of Arizona’s top public affairs firms. We are advocacy professionals who strive to obtain the results our clients want. The state’s budget is very important when it comes to managing our state’s services and revenue. As a business entity in Arizona, one must be on top of how the state’s money is being used.  Read our blog post below to learn more about Governor Ducey’s current budget proposal. 

Governor Ducey’s $14.25 Billion State Budget Proposal

In mid-January, Governor Ducey introduced a new budget proposal for the State of Arizona. The $14.25 billion in spending for the 2023 fiscal year includes nearly $1.4 billion in new spending, where most will go towards K-12 education, water infrastructure, investing more in Arizona’s “Rainy Day Fund,” and expanding Interstate 10. Additionally, $364 million of new spending will offset new tax cuts. The governor also wants to put $50 million into a border security fund, which would pay for some fencing on private land near the U.S.-Mexico border. 

Upon releasing the budget, Governor Ducey shared, “We’re going full throttle to leave Arizona stronger than we found it through targeted investments in education, public safety, border security, infrastructure, and the things that matter to Arizonans.”

What Does Governor Ducey’s State Budget Proposal Mean for Arizonans?

As mentioned, Arizona’s state budget is the lifeblood of our economy. Without a strong budget at our disposal, many important services would not have the resources they need to operate efficiently. 

Due to a growing demand for better education for our students, our lawmakers and governor is using this budget to help promote stronger school systems. State spending on K-12 education will increase to nearly $10.9 billion. This is a significant increase toward the public education system.

Additionally, Arizona’s water shortage has been one of the state’s top concerns for a while. The overall goal of the state’s $160 million spend on water infrastructure is to improve water augmentation across the state, along with nearly $150 million for rural water projects, increasing groundwater capacity, water banking, and other conservation solutions. Moreover, desalination is going to play a very important role in Arizona’s water future and this funding could help towards it. 

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. Advocates for Businesses Large and Small 

When you partner with a government relations firm like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., you’re not just getting our support. You gain an invaluable partner who advocates for your success. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, we’re experts in obtaining the results you need for success. Contact us today to learn more about our services and what we can do for you. 

Colorado River Shortage

In the midst of a 22-year drought, the Department of the Interior declared the first-ever Colorado River Basin water shortage in August 2021. As of early 2022, 100 percent of Arizona is considered to be abnormally dry and 25.8 percent is considered to be in severe drought conditions. The Colorado River irrigates farms, powers electric grids, and provides drinking water to 40 million people and this drought, combined high demand, is expected to force the first-ever mandatory water cuts. Arizona water professionals and research committees are looking for new ways to ensure the long-term availability of water for the state’s residents. Could desalination be a solution?

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is one of Arizona’s top public affairs firms. We are advocacy professionals who strive to obtain the results our clients want. When it comes to large issues like the Colorado River water shortage, it is important to be informed and to have your voice heard. Read our blog post below to learn about desalination and how it is being considered a potential water shortage solution. 

What is Desalination?

Desalination is the process of removing salts and minerals from a substance. This process can be used to remove salt from ocean water, marking it an adequate replacement for freshwater supplies. Desalination requires a lot of energy to break the chemical bonds in saltwater so the necessary technology can be costly. However, desalination is being considered one of many potential solutions for depleting water resources in Arizona.

Desalination Proposals In Arizona

Many options have been considered to stabilize the water supply to states such as Arizona, California, and Nevada, who are experiencing depleted water resources from Lake Mead. One recent proposal from Pima County includes building a $4.1 billion dollar desalination plant. This project would include a plant to remove salt from seawater in the Sea of Cortez in Sonora, as well as 196 miles of underground pipeline to transport the water to the Tucson area. 

In his final State of the State address, Governor Doug Ducey proposed spending $1 billion from the state’s general fund over three years toward sustaining Arizona’s future water supply. The idea is that the additional funding would allow for desalination to be a viable option. Desalination was the only new water initiative Ducey specifically mentioned in his speech; however, his statement notes that any water budget would be used for a variety of new technology that makes reuse and efficiency upgrades possible. 

Comparing Desalination To Current Alternatives

Compared to other projects Arizona has implemented to lessen the effects of water shortage, desalination presents some challenges in how much water it can produce and what it would cost. The Central Arizona Project is currently Arizona’s largest resource for renewable water supplies. This project is a 336-mile long system of tunnels, pumping plants, and pipelines that deliver Colorado River water to Maricopa, Pinal, and Pima counties, 80% of the state’s population. One current desalination plant north of San Diego can produce up to 56,000 acre-feet of water a year and costs $2,200 per acre-foot. The Central Arizona Project delivers approximately 1.5 million acre-feet a year to Central Arizona and costs $211 per acre-foot. This comparison reveals some of the potential difficulties of implementing desalination in Arizona.

Dorn Policy Group is a Proud Arizona Government Relations Firm

As one of the leading Arizona government relations firms, we know how important it is to be noticed by key elected officials and community leaders, especially with everchanging issues and uncertainty that affect the future of your business. Dorn Policy Group, Inc. ensures your voice is heard. Contact us today and learn how we can help your business find success through strong government relations.

Electric Vehicle charging

With more and more interest in green initiatives, the electric vehicle market is on the rise. Just ten years ago there were only a few thousand electric cars on the road. Between 2018 and 2020 there were more than 315,000 vehicles sold each year. Due to the recent increase in popularity, several next-generation businesses are landing in Arizona because of the opportunities it offers both domestic and international businesses.   

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. is one of Arizona’s leading government relations firms. We ensure your voice is heard by key policymakers from across the state. Read our article below to learn more about the growth of electric vehicles and the Arizona Innovation Corridor. 

Why Electric Is Gaining Interest

The electric vehicle market is expected to reach a value of $725.14 billion by 2026. Interest in these vehicles is on the rise after continuous industry growth worldwide because of the positive impact on the environment, as well as the lower long-term costs for fuel and maintenance. The popularity of electric vehicles also has a direct relationship with their accessibility. While electric vehicles were once only luxury cars, they can now be found across a wide range of prices and brands.

Government initiatives are also escalating the popularity of electric vehicles. A $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill passed Congress covering a wide range of transportation projects, including improvements to the U.S. electrical grid. President Joe Biden said this money would be used to build the first-ever national network of charging stations with over 500,000 stations across the country. More chargers should help increase the use of electric vehicles. A separate bill that includes higher tax credits, up to $12,500 for buying an electric car, still sits in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Arizona Innovation Corridor 

Pinal County, between Phoenix and Tucson, is becoming the home of several green energy development projects. The strategic area that these facilities are located in is being referred to as the Arizona Innovation Corridor. Lucid Motors recently opened the initial phase of the state’s first electric vehicle factory. They will be producing Lucid Air, a luxury electric sedan. Lucid Motors invested $700 million in this project and will create nearly 5,000 jobs to have this car rolling off the assembly line by the end of the year. 

Nikola is another electric vehicle company taking up residence in the Arizona Innovation Corridor. They are opening a 1 million square-foot plant to manufacture various zero-emission industrial trucks. Once the plant is fully running it should produce about 35,000 units each year. 

Why Businesses Grow in Arizona

Nikola spent 18-months searching for a place to call home, and Lucid looked at more than 60 locations across 13 states before deciding on Arizona. So why are these growing businesses locating in Arizona’s Innovation and Technology Corridor? 


    • Ease of access to transportation:  Arizona’s Innovation and Technology Corridor is near Interstate 10, Interstate 8, and Union Pacific Railroad, connecting them to numerous major markets. It is also a short drive from several international airports.
    • Skilled labor force:  Arizona’s population is constantly growing which provides the skilled labor needed to run these types of facilities. 
  • Unbeatable weather: Hundreds of people move to Arizona each day for the incredible climate. The state’s year-round sunshine is also conducive to working with renewable energy.

Dorn Policy Group, Inc. are Advocates for Better Electric Vehicle Infrastructure

When you partner with a government relations firm like Dorn Policy Group, Inc., you’re not just getting our support. You gain an invaluable partner that advocates for your success. With nearly 60 years of combined experience, we’re experts in obtaining the results you need for success. Contact us today to learn more about our services and what we can do for you. 

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