It is now two years after it became glaringly obvious that Arizona was at the epicenter of a cascading real estate market fall of epic proportions...
the state is in essentially in suspended animation, at an impasse, with no real resolution regarding what real estate is actually realistically worth and the refusal of lenders/real estate to concede they're over-leveraged, and "there is no there, there" to extract back the overextended amounts they loaned out.
The State Legislature in September will start the state budget from scratch. The current budget is a makeshift, temporary fix with an expanding deficit that hasn't been addressed.
A few signs of the times...
Mortgages Ltd filed for bankruptcy in June 2008 after the suicide of President Scott Coles. Mortgages Ltd fueled the commercial real estate bubble as one of Arizona's largest private lenders, using cash from private investors. The returns were paid by proceeds coming in from new investors and not actual gains. They funded the largest commercial real estate projects, many now unfinished, causing long term damage to commercial real estate in the state.
Arizona government has never done well at social service programs and the recognition is slowly dawning that probably our government is not a good place to humanely solve those problems. The best possible solutions in this economic environment are likely to be found in local community resources and self-reliant financial support. __________________________________________________________________
Biggest Anxiety of All: The Other Side of the Tracks___________________________________________________________________
It is no longer unusual to see BMW and Mercedes in the parking lot of uptown pawn shops.
As much as Arizona epitomizes the Boom and Bust cycles of the American West it actually may have the best opportunity to reinvent itself, although it will take innovation and hard work. There are unique factors about the governmental process in the 97 year old 48th state. We are not encumbered by too many complex processes developed over centuries as some states are.