The Veridus Weekly 1-4-19

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Governor Doug Ducey and other statewide elected officials will be sworn-in to office Monday as part of the 2019 Inaugural Ceremony. Festivities for the tickets-required event begin at 10 a.m. on the Capitol Mall, immediately east of the Historic Capitol.
 
The program includes welcoming remarks from Douglas Mayor Robert Uribe, a Democrat who has risen in prominence over the last year in becoming among Governor Ducey’s more vocal backers. Grandchildren of recently-deceased Congressman Ed Pastor will lead the Pledge of Allegiance.
 
Beyond the oaths of office, Monday is the Governor’s highest-profile opportunity since being re-elected to begin laying down markers for the next four years. During his first Inaugural Address in January 2015, Governor Ducey charted an unapologetically conservative course in pledging to grow the economy, trim regulation and “put the Arizona budget in balance.” During that same speech, he famously said of the possibility of raising taxes: “Not on our watch.”
 
Four years later, the Arizona State Capitol has taken on a much more purple hue. Two Democrats will also be sworn-in to statewide office at Monday ‘s ceremony – Secretary of State Katie Hobbs and Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman – and Republicans will now enjoy the slightest edge in the Arizona House (31-29) that they’ve had in decades. Perhaps in light of that, the Governor’s team has already suggested Monday’s ceremony will take on a particularly bipartisan flavor – including the roles of Mayor Uribe and Congressman Pastor’s family.
 
Watch for an Inaugural Address on Monday that follows similar bipartisan themes, noting the need for both political parties to come together in solving our state’s shared challenges regarding water supply, public education and more.

 
Arizona female lawmakers make history as 116th Congress gavels in
KTAR

Martha McSally and Kyrsten Sinema made history as the state’s first federal female senators, while U.S. Reps. Ann Kirkpatrick and Debbie Lesko were among the record-high 102 women who were sworn into the House.

Sinema was the first openly bisexual senator in U.S. history when she was sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence. She will also be the first Democrat to hold the office since 1988.

“Our state deserves leaders who put country above party, and I pledge to keep our state’s tradition of doing just that,” Sinema said in a statement.

Kirkpatrick and Lesko will join Reps. David Schweikert, Andy Biggs, Paul Gosar, Ruben Gallego, Tom O’Halleran, Greg Stanton and Raul Grijalva in the House.

[...] Sinema was elected to outgoing U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake’s seat over Republican McSally in November, beating her by less than 2 percent of the vote.

McSally was picked by Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey last month to succeed outgoing U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl and serve out part of the late Sen. John McCain’s term.

[...] There are more women than ever before, and a new generation of Muslims, Latinos, Native Americans and African-Americans in the House creating what academics call a reflective democracy, more aligned with the population of the United States.

[...] Read more HERE.

8 new Arizona laws that take effect Jan. 1, from traffic-ticket fees to abortion questions
Arizona Republic

A slew of new Arizona laws take effect Jan. 1, from new fees to register your vehicle or pay a traffic ticket to more questions for abortion patients.

Most of the 369 bills that the Arizona Legislature passed in 2018 took effect Aug. 3, but lawmakers delayed the effective date for some new laws until the start of the new year.

Here are eight laws that take effect at midnight and could affect your daily life. State lawmakers return to the Capitol for their next session on Jan. 14.

1. Abortion patient questions added

[...] 2. $4 fee on traffic tickets for DPS

[...] 3. $9 fee on tickets for victims' rights

[...] 4. $32 fee on all vehicle registrations

[...] 5. No renewal for disability windshield placards

[...] 6. Relief from surprise medical bills

[...] 7. Online real-estate classes allowed

[...] 8. Driver's license suspensions

[...] Read more HERE.

The Top Ten Democrats for 2020
The Hill

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) fired the starting pistol for the 2020 presidential race on Monday when she announced she was forming an exploratory committee for a White House bid.

Warren is the first top tier candidate to take such a major step — but plenty of others are expected to follow soon.

Here, The Hill presents its initial rankings of the Democratic field.

1. Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas)

[...] 2. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)

[...] 3. Former Vice President Joe Biden

[...] 4. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.)

[...] 5. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.)

[...] 6. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio)

[...] 7. Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.)

[...] 8. Sen. Amy Klobuchar. (D-Minn.)

[...] 9. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg

[...] 10. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.)

[...] Other potential candidates outside the top 10: Former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, former Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, activist Tom Steyer, Rep. Joe Kennedy III. (D-Mass.), former San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro, South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.)

Read more HERE.
 
‚ÄčVeridus clients in the news

Re-purposed to plant-based protein: Feed maker SweetPro finds food market
AGWeek

WALHALLA, N.D. — North Dakota is known for its livestock industry, but an expanding company in the northeast corner of the state is working on the plant-based protein market.

Bob Thornberg, 71, is chief executive officer of SweetPro Feeds. The company expects to finish 2018 with about $14 million in sales. The company employs about 40 people, including 14 people in Walhalla, and the rest in Minnesota, Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa. They may have to add up to five people because of an expansion that is under way.

U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., who recently visited, said plant-based proteins will have a place in feeding consumers in the world, in addition to the livestock and meat products. "Whenever we can take what we harvest out of the combine and make this, that's just smart," Heitkamp says.

SweetPro has two main products. The first is a 250-pound hard lick tubs, a free-choice supplement that cattle or horses lick to obtain vitamins and minerals with a digestive aid. The company has 125- and 50-pound variations, and several formulas within that.

"That's where we got our first patents and built the company," Thornberg says, noting the company makes 230 tons some days. The company recently licensed Arizona Grain Inc., and its Pinal Energy, a corn ethanol plant at Maricopa, Ariz., near Phoenix. The company will make SweetPro brand lick tubs in Casa Grande, Ariz., for that part of the country.

Second, are meal-type products, delivered in bags, and using distiller's grains as carriers — about 30,000 pounds a week. Most of that is from corn byproducts from ethanol plants.

They add a fermented product called ProBiotein, a brand name for a "prebiotic fiber" that they manufacture. They make it in batches of 10 tons of raw material per batch.

The company is in the process of expanding the plant, within its building, which will quintuple the production in about six months. The drying side is done and the fermenting plant is being completed.

Probiotics and prebiotics have emerged as a new development in both food and feed.

[...] Read more HERE.

Bridgepoint Education Announces Greg Finkelstein as Chief Operating Officer

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 31, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Bridgepoint Education, Inc. (NYSE: BPI) today announced the appointment of Greg Finkelstein to the position of Chief Operating Officer effective December 31, 2018, reporting to CEO Andrew Clark. Mr. Finkelstein will oversee the operational and marketing aspects of the business.

"Greg brings a great depth of experience to the company and will further bolster our transformation to a technology, data and services leader in the higher education marketplace. His operational acumen, combined with over two decades of higher education consulting and technology experience, will elevate our efforts to deliver innovative solutions to our partners," said Bridgepoint CEO Andrew Clark.

Most recently, Finkelstein was an Executive in Residence for the Education Opportunity Fund at Sterling Partners. In this role, he worked with several partner organizations in EOF's library and was elected Chairman of the Board of Academic Program International (API), a leading experiential learning partner to educational institutions. API supports the study abroad journeys of students from over 400 institutions in 25 countries. Prior to that, he was a founder of Deltak, one of the first online program management (OPM) partnership businesses. As its Chief Operating Officer and ultimately its Managing Director, Greg led the business for over a decade on a steep growth trajectory and through acquisition by Wiley in 2012, until his departure from Wiley earlier this year.

His two decades of higher education experience included serving as Vice President of Marketing and Vice President of Human Capital where he led significant expansion efforts in each area. Prior to Deltak, he served as Senior Vice President at the Beacon Institute for Learning, which also partnered with private and public universities supporting technology and health sciences management programs. Finkelstein began his career in the technology industry as a network consulting engineer with USConnect. He is a graduate of Tulane University, where he received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering.

Read HERE.

Cigna Brings Together Queen Latifah, Nick Jonas and Ted Danson to Encourage Everyone to Take Control of Both Their Physical and Emotional Health

New influencer campaign urges people to schedule their annual check-up and talk with their health care provider about their total health - body and mind

BLOOMFIELD, Conn., Jan. 3, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Global health service company Cigna Corporation (NYSE: CI) today unveiled a new initiative championing its whole person approach to health and well-being. The company is bringing together three cultural icons, Queen Latifah, Nick Jonas and Ted Danson, to encourage everyone to schedule their annual check-up and talk openly and honestly with their health care providers about how they are feeling, physically and emotionally.

Experience the interactive Multichannel News Release here: https://www.multivu.com/players/English/8454551-cigna-latifah-jonas-danson-go-know-take-control/.

Filmed in Los Angeles, the campaign takes a public service message approach and features the three influencers taking unique steps to find balance in their hectic personal and professional lives. Using light humor, they each address the impact that widespread and relatable feelings, such as stress and loneliness, can have on overall health and well-being.

[...] Science shows a strong connection between physical and emotional health. Perceived stress is a risk factor for illnesses like type 2 diabetes1 and heart disease2, and sleep loss can lead to increased risk of developing depression3. Cigna released the findings of a study earlier this year on loneliness, which other research has shown to be as deadly as smoking 15 cigarettes per day4.

[...] This initiative builds upon Cigna's preventive care efforts encouraging people everywhere to Go. Know. Take Control®  by going to see their health care provider for an annual check-up, knowing their four health numbers (blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar and body mass index) and taking control of their health. To help bring this to life, Cigna developed a grassroots Health Improvement Tour (HIT) that travels the country visiting local communities to deliver free health screenings. In 2018, HIT visited 139 cities at 237 events and provided more than 14,000 free screenings. In 2019, the tour will continue to make stops around the country helping people better understand their four health numbers.

[...] For more information about the connection between physical and emotional health, visit Cigna.com/takecontrol today.

Read more HERE.
 
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In case you missed it . . .
 
Arizona news:

Phoenix housing growth expected to outpace nation in 2019, despite national homebuilding woes

State inauguration ceremony sets a bipartisan tone

The Coyotes will stay in Glendale another year. Can the city persuade the team to stay longer?

Some Arizona students will get college debt forgiven after AG settlement

Phoenix clerk: Enough valid signatures submitted to force Nowakowski recall vote

Grand Canyon celebrates 100 years as a national park in 2019

Rents in Phoenix among the fastest-rising in the country

Top Arizona stories of 2018: Goldy, Uber and #RedForEd; charter schools, Sinema and McCain

Phoenix man starts effort to legalize all drugs

These cities have the worst drivers in Arizona

Best states for business: Arizona jumps 6 spots in Forbes' latest ranking


National news:

Appeals court sides with Trump on transgender military ban

Economy added 312,000 jobs in December

House Democrat to introduce impeachment measure against Trump

House elects Pelosi to second Speakership

Democrats appeal ruling declaring Obamacare unconstitutional

Kyl bids farewell to Senate day before Arizona swears new senators

Both Sides Find Compromise Hard on the Government Shutdown

Romney's attack prompts call to protect Trump from 2020 primary challenger

The Federal Shutdown's Impact on States and Localities

Warren announces White House bid, getting early jump on 2020 race

Jeff Flake Won’t Rule Out 2020 Run: ‘Somebody Needs To’ Challenge Trump
 
 
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