Latest from Troy Hill
3D printing and foam: Arizona organizations make homes more sustainable
PHOENIX – Amid climate change and an affordable housing crisis in Arizona, organizations have developed housing solutions, including using 3D printing and plastic foam, to make buildings better for the environment and for tight budgets.
Tempe streetcar opens as Valley Metro expands light rail west and south
TEMPE – Valley Metro is expanding the reach of public transportation across the Phoenix area, including a recently opened streetcar in Tempe and light rail expansions northwest to Metrocenter mall and south to Baseline Road.
Here’s what police, car dealers recommend to deter catalytic converter theft
PHOENIX – Catalytic converter thefts are rising across the U.S. The pollution-control parts, which can cost more than $1,000 to replace, don’t come with a serial number, but one Phoenix dealership has a way to increase the likelihood of recovering a stolen converter, and police recommend drivers be intentional about where they park.
From heat deaths to worsening allergies, climate change harms health
PHOENIX – Concerns about the impact of the climate crisis on health are driving doctors, nurses, medical students and others to advocate for change. The American Medical Association recently declared climate change a public health crisis and said it would push for more policies meant to limit global warming.
It’s a TikTok party: Social media helped two businesses survive the pandemic
PHOENIX – TikTok, which has more than 1 billion users, has helped two Valley businesses take off. Viral videos for Jump Into Bliss, which rents bounce houses, and Decor by Jess, which makes party decorations, gave the businesses much-needed exposure during the COVID-19 pandemic and led to new customers.
‘Five-alarm crisis’: Teachers face mental health crisis due to low pay, pandemic stress, scant support
Navigating low salaries, pandemic worries and burnout: Many teachers will tell you this is the job description of modern educators. The result is an expanding mental health crisis among U.S. teachers – a problem so dire that many are leaving the profession.
$1 billion investment to acquire, conserve water is signed by Ducey
PHOENIX – Gov. Doug Ducey on Wednesday signed a bipartisan bill allocating more than $1 billion for water projects and reestablishing the authority of the Water Infrastructure Finance Authority of Arizona.
New Phoenix shelter is more than a one-night stop for people experiencing homelessness
PHOENIX – A new Phoenix shelter, run by St. Vincent de Paul and funded by the city and Maricopa County, offers people experiencing homelessness more than just an overnight bed. It’s designed to give people a stable transitional situation, three meals a day and case managers to help them find permanent housing.
‘We are ready to receive you’: Blue states prepare for influx of patients seeking abortion care
PHOENIX – Health care clinics in California, New Mexico, Colorado, Washington and other states are preparing to become “safe havens” for pregnant people living in states where abortion is restricted or banned, like Arizona.
‘Immense suffering’: After Roe, groups focus on how to help pregnant people
Activists and organizations on both sides of the abortion debate are figuring out how best to help pregnant people after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the landmark 1973 ruling that had legalized abortion.
‘We will see desperation’: Planned Parenthood Arizona stops abortions after Roe v. Wade overturned
PHOENIX – Planned Parenthood Arizona announced Friday it had shut down abortion services in the state, citing “Arizona's tangled web of conflicting laws” after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. Abortion opponents, meanwhile, said “life has won a great victory.”
As budget deadline nears, Arizona educators rally at Capitol to protest public school spending
PHOENIX – Members of the Arizona Education Association rallied Tuesday at the state Capitol to again call on lawmakers to funnel a bigger chunk of the state’s $5 billion budget surplus into public school spending.
‘Springs are sentinels’: NAU team studies how spring water affects ecosystems
FLAGSTAFF – Spring water is a huge part of the Arizona ecosystem, feeding all the state’s perennial streams. NAU professor Abe Springer, who has been studying springs and groundwater for over two decades, talks about how they affect all the inhabitants of Arizona.
As Pipeline Fire burns 20,000 acres north of Flagstaff, officials share safety tips
PHOENIX – The Pipeline Fire has burned over 20,000 acres just north of Flagstaff and prompted some evacuations. Before the fire broke out, the National Fire Prevention Education Team was in Arizona to talk about what Arizonans can do to prevent wildland fires, including being intentional about where you park and how you secure trailer chains.
‘Border security is national security’: Pence in Arizona to discuss immigration
PHOENIX – Former Vice President Mike Pence visited the U.S.-Mexico border in Arizona on Monday, then addressed a crowd at the Arizona Commerce Authority in Phoenix on his vision for U.S. border security and immigration. Pence is expected to run for president in 2024 – potentially against his old boss.
Monkeypox probably has arrived in Arizona. Here’s what to know about the virus.
PHOENIX – Health officials announced Tuesday they were working to confirm a probable case of monkeypox in Maricopa County. It would be Arizona’s first case of the virus, which is transmitted primarily via skin-to-skin contact.
No-excuse mail-in voting is constitutional, judge rules in GOP lawsuit
PHOENIX – Judge Lee Jantzen of Mohave County Superior Court ruled Monday that mail-in voting does not violate the Arizona Constitution’s ballot secrecy requirements. He cited state statutes that keep mailed ballots private and secure.
Exoskeleton suit designed to reduce strain on manual laborers
PHOENIX – The WearTech Center, GoX Labs and Arizona State University collaborated to develop an exoskeleton suit called the PhenEx. The suit is designed to reduce the strain on workers as they lift heavy objects.
NAU’s smart bike technology can detect damaged pathways
FLAGSTAFF – A Northern Arizona University engineering team has created a prototype sensor and network that can detect damage along bike paths and alert city officials to needed repairs.
Sustainable in Sedona: As tourism rises, city’s free shuttles ease parking problems
SEDONA – Tourists looking for outdoor activities with social distancing flocked to Sedona during the pandemic, adding to traffic congestion and prompting the city to expedite plans to make its tourism more sustainable, including a shuttle for hikers and deterrents to off-road vehicles in certain places.
Arizona arts commission gave grants to 30 artists. Here’s how they’re using them.
PHOENIX – Dozens of Arizona artists are expanding their creative horizons, thanks to 30 $5,000 research and development grants from the Arizona Commission on the Arts. The grants were for artists at any stage of their careers to help them experiment with techniques, create new works and more.
New study shows nearly half of bald eagles affected by chronic lead poisoning
PHOENIX – A new study shows that almost half of bald eagles in the U.S. suffer from chronic lead poisoning. The main culprit is lead bullets and shot used in hunting, which break apart in animal carcasses. The carcasses are scavenged by the birds, who then ingest the lead.
Credit crunch: Complaints about credit reports jumped in 2021, feds say
WASHINGTON - Arizonans went from filing 6,600 complaints with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in 2020 to filing nearly 8,000 the next year, the most on record. And almost half of those were complaints about what consumers found on their credit reports, CFPB says.
Lights, camera – action! Arizona film industry is growing after a decade of stagnation
MESA – After being left for dead in 2010, the Arizona film industry has grown the past few years, thanks to a network of indie filmmakers, the Phoenix Film Festival and the revived Arizona Film Office.
Bill to ban drive-up voting, curbside drop boxes could harm voters with disabilities, advocates say
PHOENIX – Advocates for people with disabilities are concerned about a bill in the state Senate that would prohibit drive-up voting and curbside drop-off boxes for ballots, saying more options – not fewer – are vital for helping people exercise their right to vote.
Renaissance festival returns, and with it, workers who depend on ‘the circuit’
GOLD CANYON – The Arizona Renaissance Festival stopped in 2020 and didn’t return in 2021 because of the pandemic, but it made its comeback this year. Crowds and workers were eager to return.
Arizona Humane Society mobile clinic provides free pet care for underserved communities
PHOENIX – The Arizona Humane Society’s Healthy Tails mobile clinic offers free veterinary services, from surgery to vaccinations, deworming treatments, flea and tick prevention and microchipping.