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AG Mayes: Arizona Commerce Authority CEO Forums violate constitution

Attorney General Kris Mayes sent a  letter Tuesday to the Arizona Commerce Authority saying its CEO Forums violate the gift clause in the state constitution.

The notice comes after the auditor general requested an investigation in September over the ACA’s practice of entertaining business leaders. 

Mayes said that while doing so can be part of luring companies to build or expand in Arizona, the amount the agency spent violates a provision that bars giving gifts with public funds.

Last year, the Commerce Authority spent more than $2 million in private business forums just for the 2023 Super Bowl.

And still, Mayes says this year’s planned forums don’t meet requirements that the gifts are of nominal value.

GOP state lawmakers recently introduced a bill to abolish the Authority, but that was drafted before Mayes’ letter.

Mayes has not stated whether legal action will follow. 

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Greg Hahne started as a news intern at KJZZ in 2020 and returned as a field correspondent in 2021. He learned his love for radio by joining Arizona State University's Blaze Radio, where he worked on the production team.