Hot Links: Monsoons, ADOT's Outsourced PR, and 'Racinos'

The monsoons have finally arrived in the Valley. After a series of thunderstorms Monday night, the city saw more storms early this morning. Although temperatures in the Valley are expected to be around 108 the next several days, the Weather Service says the chance for thunderstorms will continue into next week...Despite having a public relations staff of up to 30 people, the Arizona Department of Transportation has been paying millions in taxpayer dollars to outsource public relations. Fiscal records show the department paid more than $4 million for PR last year, and has already spent $3.5 million this year...A.J. "Jack" Pfister, former head of the Salt River Project, died yesterday at his home in Phoenix. He was 75...Arizona is applying for $7 million in federal funding to help the state prepare to deal with swine flu in the coming flu season. Governor Brewer's office says about $5 million would go toward vaccinations and lab operations, while the other $2 million would fund an education campaign...Horse and dog track owners in the Valley are pushing voters to let them operate casinos, a proposal that was rejected at the polls seven years ago. Lobbying firms for the track owners say the plan could generate at much as $500 million in revenue for the state in its first year...The family of an elderly dental patient in Florida is suing his dentist for allegedly dropping tools down his throat. In the lawsuit, the family of Charles Gaal Jr. alleges that he underwent several procedures to remove the tools but never recovered. He died in 2007.  

Storms bring high winds and rain to Valley

ADOT Spends Millions On PR Firms

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Niki D'Andrea has covered subjects including drug culture, women's basketball, pirate radio stations, Scottsdale staycations, and fine wine. She has worked at both New Times and Phoenix Magazine, and is now a freelancer.
Contact: Niki D'Andrea

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