CITY OF PHOENIX TO DEBATE PROPOSED HIKES IN TAXES AND FEES - The Phoenix Mayor and City Council is expected to discuss Phoenix City Manager Ed Zuercher's proposal to increase taxes and fees by about $12 million next fiscal year to help close the City's projected $37.7 million budget deficit next week. The largest source of revenue would be an additional tax of up to $1.50 per month, based on water meter size, added to city residents' bills for water, sewer and trash service. Other proposed revenue increases include raising fees to use municipal recreation and senior centers, which leaders say could close if the City doesn't balance its budget. Read more from azcentral.

PUBLIC SAFETY AGENCIES NOW CAN COMMUNICATE BETTER WITH EACH OTHER -  More than 30 public-safety agencies — including the Tucson Police and Fire Departments, the Pima County Sheriff’s Department and seven county hospitals — have the ability to communicate with one another during emergencies now that the County's Emergency Communications and Operations Center is complete. The Pima County Wireless Integrated Network (PCWIN) and the Emergency Communications and Operations Center — both funded by County bonds — were first envisioned in 2001, when the 9/11 attacks prompted a discussion among officials about the need for all first responders to be able to easily communicate with one another. The new Center houses dispatch centers for the Sheriff’s Department and six fire districts. Upgrades also were made to the City of Tucson's Thomas O. Price Service Center, which can serve as a backup for County dispatch. Read more from the Arizona Daily Star and Pima County.

UA OPENS CENTER FOR VETERANS STUDYING MEDICINE - In what is believed to be the first center of its kind, the University of Arizona recently held a grand opening ceremony for the Veterans Education and Transition Services (VETS) Center at the Arizona Health Science Center in Tucson. With the help of trained student veterans, VETS helps transition veterans into the university setting while also providing resources for those pursuing careers in the health industry. The UA says its veteran population has grown to nearly 1,200, an 83 percent increase in 13 years. Among those in attendance at the dedication were Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and her husband Mark Kelly, a veteran and retired astronaut. Read more from KTAR and UA News.

JOB OPPORTUNITY: WATER SYSTEM OPERATOR - Tucson Water is seeking three experienced operators to be part of the Water Operations Treatment Instrumentation & Control Section. This section is responsible for the central control operations of the potable and reclaimed water system. Application deadline is May 2, 2014. Read the job description.

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