News

Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Hosts Annual Black and White Ball and Business Leadership Conference

The Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce is hosting on the Black & White Ball Leadership Conference on Friday, September 25th, 2020. This year the organization will be honoring five outstanding awardees with an online Leadership Conference, in place of its largest annual fundraiser. During the two-hour live-streamed roundtable, attendees will be able to reflect back at the struggles of 2020 thus far and get insight into how leaders are governing current affairs. To learn more about the event, the awardees, and to register, visit http://bit.ly/BWLeadership2020.

Posted in Client News |

Greater Phoenix Leadership Welcomes Heather Carter

Greater Phoenix Leadership (GPL) is very excited to announce that Heather Carter will be joining their executive team, as GPL’S newly created role of Executive Vice President. As Executive Vice President, Heather Carter will focus on issues important to GPL such as education and healthcare. She will also aid in the execution of GPL’s strategic plan that was adopted in May of 2020. Neil Giuliano, GPL President, and CEO made the announcement this month, emphasizing the organization’s dedication to serving as Phoenix’s principal CEO business leader organization. She will assume her position on October 1st. To learn more about GPL, click here.

Posted in Client News |

The Western Way Paves the Way for the Clean Energy Sector in Arizona

The Western Way and Arizona Technology Council recently convened a roundtable discussion of Arizona business leaders to generate ideas and recommendations for how to best incorporate the clean energy sector into Arizona’s economic recovery plan. The clean energy sector has the potential to play a significant role in Arizona’s post-COVID economic recovery. Arizona is emerging as a national leader in technology and innovation, including developing and adopting clean and renewable energy solutions for its advanced economy. And these breakthrough technologies continue to improve because of Arizona’s innovative, entrepreneurial and business-friendly climate. This furthers goals on both sides of the aisle, including conservative principles of free enterprise, supporting manufacturing, and strengthening the U.S.’s geopolitical power.

Read our blog to find out how Molera Alvarez is working to speed up progress toward creating more clean energy projects in Arizona to create a virtuous circle of shared prosperity for rural and urban Arizonans.

Posted in Client News |

Molera Alvarez Partner Leads Discussion with Tourism Industry Leaders

Recently Jaime A. Molera moderated a panel of stellar national and Arizona tourism industry leaders to discuss the importance of tourism promotion.  As Arizona, and the nation, continues to suffer economic stagnation due to Covid-19, no other industry is impacted as negatively as the tourism/travel industry.  The panelist included Roger Dow, Pres./CEO of U.S. Travel Association, Debbie Johnson, Exec. Director of the Arizona Office of Tourism, Steve Moore, Pres./CEO of Visit Phoenix, and noted economist Jim Rounds, Pres. of Rounds Consulting Group.  Kim Sabow, Pres./CEO of the Arizona Lodging and Tourism Association set the context of the discussion and the panels highlighted the significance of why we must continue to press for tourism promotion and fight against debilitating over-regulation at the state and local level.

Posted in Molera Alvarez News |

Molera Alvarez Honors the Life of Ronnie Lopez

A third-generation Arizonan of Mexican-American descent, Ronnie was born on March 6, 1947, in the copper-mining town of Miami, AZ, and passed away on August 23, 2020, in Phoenix, AZ.  Ronnie’s political savvy led to his success as a business leader and entrepreneur. In 1987, he founded Phoenix International Consultants, a consulting company specializing in contract negotiations, and political and marketing strategies.

Ronnie Lopez was a high-profile community leader and advocate. His community activism and visionary leadership helped inspire the creation of community-based organizations like Valle del Sol and Chicanos Por La Causa (CPLC). He served as a field representative for the Arizona Civil Rights Commission and later served as CPLC’s first president & CEO. He presided as Justice of the Peace in the West Phoenix Precinct in Maricopa County which led to Ronnie administering the oath of office to Arizona Governor Bruce Babbitt. Ronnie served under Governor Babbitt for 10 years and ultimately became his Chief of Staff.  Most recently, Ronnie served on the Board of Directors of a Molera Alvarez client, CopperPoint Insurance Companies.

One of his favorite sayings was, “dime con quién andas, te dire quién eres. (tell me who you walk with, I’ll tell you who you are.)”  Ruben Alvarez and Jaime Molera were proud to know, become dear friends of Ronnie and his beautiful family, and walk with this great Arizonan.

May he Rest In Peace.

Posted in Community News, Molera Alvarez News |

More Clean and Renewable Energy Projects Needed to Jump-Start Arizona’s Economy

In a recent Arizona Republic OpEd, Arizona Senator Kate Brophy McGee emphasized how solar energy projects boost Arizona’s economy, particularly in rural areas. We couldn’t agree more. Our firm is working with business and government leaders from across the state to come up with a blueprint for how to improve incentives and speed up progress toward creating more clean and renewable energy projects to Arizona. As job-generating powerhouses, clean energy projects not only make good business sense, they also improve our health and energy independence.

As indicated in a March 2019 report by our client, The Western Way, there were 34 utility-scale solar and wind energy facilities constructed in rural Arizona from 2001 to 2017. These facilities resulted in significant economic benefits to rural Arizona, including:

  • $9.4 billion contributed to the Arizona economy;
  • 17,971 Arizona jobs;
  • $1.2 billion in wages to paid to Arizona employees; and
  • $16.7 million in state and local tax revenues benefiting Arizona.

Additionally, after construction is complete, the ongoing operations of renewable energy facilities benefit the state through employment, maintenance purchases, and operating costs – to the tune of $63 million in economic output and 700 jobs annually. And the icing on the cake is that the rapidly falling cost of renewable energy technologies has also enhanced their viability.

We believe bringing these projects to fruition in rural Arizona will reap great benefits. Rural areas across the U.S. have had a harder time recovering from the Great Recession, and COVID-19 is threatening to exacerbate the urban-rural economic disparities. Most of Federal CARES Act relief funding has gone to cities larger than 500,000, leaving small cities and rural areas behind. This rural-urban divide breeds resentment and hostility that make it harder for us to come together in the public arena, too.

What we need right now is a shared vision that can bring rural and urban Arizona together to solve our common economic and environmental challenges. Uniting to increase clean energy projects will not only make our state more economically powerful, our strong policies and proven leadership will attract even more investment to our state, creating a virtuous circle of shared prosperity.

Despite its bright prospects, solar is not the only path forward. We need to aggressively pursue creating hydrogen plants and hydrogen fueling stations to power both the energy and transportation sectors with this fuel that emits only water vapor and warm air. We need to blow our current wind energy generation out of the water. Wind energy comprises only 267.3 megawatts (MW) of installed capacity of the 2,087.3 MW in renewable (solar and wind) capacity in rural areas of Arizona. And we need to increase battery storage options to enhance the reliability of the renewable energy system, which struggles due to fluctuations in energy production.

Arizona has a renewable energy portfolio standard that requires electric utilities to generate 15% of their energy from renewable resources by 2025, along with a variety of renewable energy tax incentives. But policies encouraging renewable energy development need to be enhanced in direct proportion to the level we wish to see our economy, health and safety, and democracy grow and strengthen.

Posted in Community News |

AIGA Member Addresses DNC

Ned Norris Jr., Chairman of the Tohono O’odham Nation and member of the Arizona Indian Gaming Association spoke during the Democratic National Convention Native American Caucus Meeting. Chairman Norris was chosen to speak as he is considered someone who has been at the forefront of fighting for tribal issues. The Chairman discussed the border wall, border security, protection of sacred sites, and the impact on the Tohono O’odham Nation.

Posted in Client News |

The Increasingly Important Role of Latinos in Arizona’s Elections

Latinos throughout the country, and particularly in the freshly-minted battleground state of Arizona, are quickly becoming the most important voting bloc for the upcoming November elections. This was emphasized by several speakers during the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund Political Convention Briefing Series. This conversation highlighted the importance of the Latino vote, as well as how COVID-19 will play a role in the upcoming Presidential election. Chief Executive Officer of NALEO, Arturo Vargas, projected about 14.5 million Latino voters will participate in the upcoming 2020 elections, insisting that the Latino vote will be a deciding factor. California Secretary of State, Alex Padilla also touched on the importance mail-in ballots will have in adapting to challenges with in-person voting due to COVID-19. Participants also encouraged Latinos to vote early and at home to create shorter lines on election day and make voting as safe as possible.

Latinos make up 24% of eligible voters in Arizona, and their share of the electorate has grown significantly over the past several elections. Additionally, nationwide, Hispanic voter turnout (of voting age population) went from 27% to 40% between 2014 and 2018, which represented a 50% increase, and the biggest increase amongst all racial groups, including whites. Hispanic turnout still trailed White turnout 40% to 57% in 2018, but the increase in turnout was notable. In Arizona, Hispanic voter turnout was 48.8% in 2018, much higher than national turnout.

Posted in Community News |

Molera Interviews Capt. Mark Kelly at Chamber Forum

Molera Alvarez partner Jaime A. Molera led a conversation with Capt. Mark Kelly at a Greater Phoenix Chamber virtual forum.  Capt. Kelly talked about his vision for the state and nation as he competes as the Democratic candidate against U.S. Senator Martha McSally.  Molera said, “It is always a privilege to represent the Chamber in these types of discussions. I appreciate the Captain’s candor and willingness to engage with this important business group.”

Posted in Molera Alvarez News |

Phoenix CoolSeal Neighborhood Streets

The City of Phoenix began its cool pavement pilot program using CoolSeal by Guardtop on August 10, 2020. Through various studies conducted by the EPA and universities, it has been proven that cool pavement is instrumental in the cooling of ambient and surface temperatures as well as reducing the effects of Urban Heat Islands, which the city suffers from. CoolSeal has been applied in various U.S. cities and other countries including Australia. The city of Los Angeles first applied the product in 2015 and the City of Phoenix has been carefully following and studying its effectiveness. CoolSeal has been shown to decrease asphalt surface temperatures by up to 40 degrees F and lower ambient temperatures by up to 6 degrees F. City officials are hopeful they will be able to cool Phoenix down during its warmer months. To learn more about CoolSeal please visit Guardtop.com/coolseal.

Posted in Client News |