With the state facing a significant budget deficit for next fiscal year, the AIA Government Affairs committee members are growing concerned as to when or if we will ever see a fully restored HURF and other infrastructure investments. We believe investing in infrastructure is in part crucial to an economic recovery. Tied into this is also the desire for greater funding for the school facilities board, which we can only surmise will not be coming forth in 2015.

Innovative project financing is increasing the use of alternative project delivery methods such as public-private partnerships (P3), which allow for design/build/finance/maintenance and may require legislation to clarify the process.

We continue to track PACE legislation as we meet with strategic partners. Right now, we’re studying what was done in Connecticut to get PACE passed legislatively and to learn how the state built consensus with the local bankers association.

Last session, we saw a bill surfaced that ultimately died, which would require school districts to sell unused school buildings and properties to charter schools. We believe that this will surface again next session, and we’re watching very closely for it. Along similar lines, we would be concerned if we saw legislation reintroduced this session that would curtail bonding capacity of school districts.

Parallel to legislative matters we also plan to watch what the new corporation commission intends to do as it pertains to energy efficiency standards and how the commission’s two newest members will wade in. The committee is eagerly awaiting possible legislation this session that would ease some regulations and allow the expansion of and craft breweries.

John Glenn
Associate of the American
Institute of Architects in
Arizona and government
affairs co-chair