The Maricopa County Attorney's and Sheriff's offices have filed a lawsuit against the county Board of Supervisors in a bid to block the use of $11 million allegedly designated only for law enforcement purposes.
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The source of the latest squabble is simple to sum up: Money. According to the news release just sent out by County Attorney Andrew Thomas' office, county supervisors are tapping a pool of cash set up by state lawmakers that was generated from "fees, fines and penalties and not from taxes." To block them from taking the dough, Thomas and Arpaio (who apparently believe they should be getting the money) have filed suit and asked for a restraining order.
No doubt, both sides could use the money. But make no mistake -- this is just another front in the bare-fisted power struggle between these county officials. With taxpayers sponsoring the lawyers on all sides, it seems likely that the legal costs for all of these intra-county lawsuits will reach $11 million before long, easy.
Scroll down for a link to the 41-page lawsuit: