Andy Tobin explains the request for an audit of the Redistricting Commission.
"The Democrats are not going to win. They're not going to win," Speaker Andy Tobin stated emphatically. "We are going to more than retain the House and the Senate, and they [the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission] are trying to mess us up... As far as the IRC is concerned, I'm not done by a long shot."
One of the first salvos in that fight is Tobin's request for an audit of the AIRC.
"You might be amazed to find out how many millions of dollars they are trying to spend of your money to basically screw over Republicans. And we're not going to allow that to happen without people watching this process."
In a letter dated January 6, 2012, Richard Stavneak, the Director of the Joint Legislative Budget Committee, writes, "We have a request from Speaker Tobin to analyze the financial status of the Independent Redistricting Commission (IRC). We understand that the IRC is currently evaluating wheter its $3 million appropriation for FY 2012 will be sufficient for this year. The Legislature will also be considering the appropriation level for the IRC in FY 2013."
The letter continues, specifically asking for:
- "A listing of all revenues generated and collected by the IRC, by funding source (FY 201! and FY 20Ă¬2).
- "An accounting of all expenditures (including accrued expenditures) to date, by year, by expenditure type (FY 2011 and FY 2012).
- "For legal services, please identify the expenditures related to IRC legal guidance versus legal services for individual IRC members. Additionally, please identify the lawsuit or matter that corresponds to each legal services expenditure.
- "For Professional & Outside services, please identiĹ•y the vendorfcontractor associated with each expenditure.
- " For staffing and commilĂ®ee operations, please identify staff salaries and any extraordinary expense(s).
- "An expenditure plan for FY 2012 with and without a FY 2012 supplemental,
- "An expenditure plan for FY 2013."
Stavneak requested that the information be provided by Friday, January 20.
The AZCapitol Times reports that the AIRC has piled up about $1.1 million in legal fees, but has not paid nearly $336,000 of its bills. "...the IRC has been besieged by legal costs due [to] court battles and a state investigation. The commission hired outside counsel to defend Mathis and Democratic Commissioners JosĂ© Herrera and Linda McNulty for an investigation launched by Attorney General Tom Horne over alleged violations of Arizonaâ€™s open meeting law. Additional legal services were needed after Mathis challenged Brewer and the Senateâ€™s removal of her as IRC chair, an ouster that was later reversed by the Arizona Supreme Court."
Regarding the maps, Tobin stated, "I believe them to be absolutely illegal, anyway. So, this fight is long from over, but we have to move ahead. We have to make sure that we're in the best spot we could possibly be."
Hear Tobin's entire comments: