Hot Links: Smoking Bans, Marijuana Tax, and SRP Vandalism

In the next month, student groups at all four ASU campuses will vote on a proposed smoking ban. The ban would prohibit smoking anywhere on the campuses, and university administration says it probably will accept the votes. If the ban passes, ASU would join about 381 colleges in the United States that prohibit smoking anywhere on their grounds...Tempe water-park Big Surf will open May 21 for its 41st season. The park was rumored to be closing when Golfland Entertainment Inc. gave up its lease last year, but park owner, Inland Oceans of El Paso, Texas, plans to run Big Surf itself and not seek new management...The state Senate is expected to vote on a marijuana tax measure today. The proposal, from Tucson Democratic Senator Jorge Garcia, would allow the state to tax marijuana sold under a possible medical marijuana act, which voters may decide this fall. An analysis by non-bipartisan legislative budget staff found that taxing medical marijuana could generate nearly $1 million for the state in the 2012 fiscal year...

Phoenix police are offering a $6,000 reward for information that leads to the arrest of vandals who damaged various Salt River Project pumping stations across the Valley. Police say the vandals entered secured, fenced properties to damage the pumps, and on February 22, an SRP employee was physically assaulted at a Mesa facility...Though all three public universities in Arizona recently approved tuition hikes, there will be no tuition increase at Maricopa County Community Colleges. The governing board voted Tuesday night to keep the current $71 per credit hour, while changing some fees. Enrollment at Maricopa County's 10 community colleges has jumped 11 percent in the past year...A proposed new correctional facility for Glendale is a no-go. More than 250 concerned residents voiced their grievances at a meeting in January, and the Glendale City Council was not in favor of the facility. But the law firm representing Human Potential Consultants, the company that wanted to build the prison, recently let Glendale officials know the company is no longer interested in the proposed area.

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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