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Utility urges court to kill energy initiative

• By Howard Fischer

Brett Johnson told Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Daniel Kiley that Arizona law specifically requires that initiative petitions list the sponsoring organization. He said that's more than a procedural requirement.

"What if it is an offensive group that is trying to logroll a situation through the state of Arizona?" Johnson asked. And what, he said, if that name would turn off voters?

"So, instead, they come up with a flowery organization name that has been marketed all over the country and the communications people say, 'If you use this name, we'll be able to logroll this initiative through,' " he said.

Johnson told Kiley that's precisely what happened here.

He said the initiative to mandate that half of all electricity produced in Arizona by 2030 be produced from renewable sources initially listed no sponsoring organization when the paperwork was filed in February to begin circulating petitions. Only later was Clean Energy for a Healthy Arizona established as a limited liability company and listed as a sponsor.

But Johnson argued to Kiley that's not good enough.

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