Colorado lawmakers propose using blockchain technology to protect state data

A bipartisan bill before Colorado lawmakers encourages state agencies to research uses for blockchain technology to potentially reduce costs by eliminating redundancies and preventing fraud. The bill’s advocates and the state’s blockchain community said it has a greater message: Colorado can be a powerhouse for the burgeoning technology, and the public sector is integral in making that happen. Sponsored in the senate by Sens. Kent Lambert, R-Colorado Springs, and Angela Williams, D-Denver, Sen

Business Story Ideas in the 2018 Federal Budget Proposal

The Office of Management and Budget released President Donald Trump’s full budget proposal for fiscal year 2018 Tuesday morning. It fleshed out ideas and priorities mentioned in the so-called “skinny budget” put forth in March and added tinder to the flames of business journalism for weeks to come. The contents of the budget won’t come as much of a surprise for even the greenest business reporter: As expected, the president called for significant cuts to non-defense discretionary spending, enti

Community activist hopes to ride dark horse to Senate win as Democrat | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – All the things that analysts say present a political challenge for Deedra Abboud – her lack of political experience and party ties, her Muslim faith and liberal activism – are the things she embraces in her race for Senate. Abboud, a 45-year-old Phoenix lawyer and community activist, became the first Democrat to throw her hat in the ring for the 2018 race for Republican Sen. Jeff Flake’s seat, announcing her candidacy April 10 – shortly after the longtime independent registered wit

Arizona senators go 'nuclear' with GOP, pave way for Gorsuch vote | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – Arizona’s senators joined other Republicans – and three Democrats – in a 54-45 vote Friday confirming Neil Gorsuch’s nomination to the Supreme Court, one day after the GOP invoked the “nuclear option” to end a Democratic filibuster and allow a vote. The confirmation vote went as expected late Friday morning and came with none of the drama from less than 24 hours before, when the Senate voted to break the filibuster and clear the way for a straight up-or-down vote that required only

Congress rescinds rule limiting internet collection of customer data | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – The House voted Tuesday to repeal an Obama-era regulation that would have required internet service providers to get explicit consent before selling customer data, a policy that critics said would have stifled business. The 215-205 House vote followed a 50-48 vote Thursday in the Senate under the Congressional Review Act, which gives Congress expedited authority to repeal recent regulations and prevents the agency in question from enacting substantially similar rules. The resoluti

Arizona reflects split as GOP delays health care vote amid infighting | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – On the seventh anniversary of the Affordable Care Act’s signing, House Republican hopes to vote on an Obamacare replacement were dashed Thursday when leaders failed to quell an uprising by conservatives in their own party. House Speaker Paul Ryan canceled an expected vote on the American Health Care Act in the face of critics, led by members of the fiercely conservative Freedom Caucus, who said the GOP measure did not go far enough to deconstruct the ACA. Democrats, meanwhile, rema

Trump budget would hire team of lawyers to secure land on border | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump’s proposed fiscal 2018 budget calls for the hiring of 20 attorneys to help the federal government “obtain the land and holdings necessary to secure the Southwest border.” The budget, which calls for a $1.1 billion reduction in the Justice Department’s overall budget, does not make clear what land will be targeted or what it will be needed for, but it would likely be used to build Trump’s border wall or secure access to it. Anthony Francois, a land rights att

CBO: 24 million could lose insurance under Obamacare replacement | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – Arizona Democrats lambasted the GOP-proposed healthcare plan Monday after a Congressional Budget Office report said the plan would reduce the federal deficit by $337 billion over 10 years, while leaving as many as 24 million more Americans uninsured. “Congress should be focused on finding real solutions that protect access to coverage, not playing partisan politics with the health and wellbeing of millions of Americans,” said Rep. Tom O’Halleran, D-Sedona. “With hundreds of thousan

Flake likely to face challenges from all sides, vows to be ready | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Arizona, begins the 2018 election cycle with $580,000 in the bank, a history of disagreeing with President Donald Trump – and a target on his back. With almost two years until midterm elections, experts say Flake can expect serious opposition in his re-election bid from Republican and Democratic challengers alike. Despite the president’s lukewarm performance in approval polls, he is still relatively popular with Arizona Republicans, which could make for a diffic

Trans-Pacific trade debate makes for unusual allies, antagonists | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – Ray Zuckerman felt some relief when President Donald Trump signed an executive order to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership – and some reservations. Relief because he felt the multination trade pact was rushed through with little oversight, but reservations because Zuckerman, a Phoenix business owner who does a brisk international trade, worries that losing the deal could harm free trade. “The principle of free trade is good,” said Zuckerman, CEO of Phoen

Trump plan to pay for wall with import tax hits wall of opposition | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – The White House is considering a 20 percent tax on imports as a way to pay for President Donald Trump’s proposed wall along the Mexican border, according to published reports Thursday. Details on the plan were not available from the White House, which reportedly shifted positions several times over the course of the afternoon, but the broad outlines of an import tax were enough to earn the ire of businesses, lawmakers and some policy groups. “(An import tariff) would be a disaster

Report: Obamacare repeal could hit state public health funding | Cronkite News

WASHINGTON – Repealing the Affordable Care Act could cost Arizona more than $46 million in federal public health funds over five years, according to a report released Tuesday by a national health policy organization. The report by the Trust for America’s Health said those funds came from the Prevention and Public Health Fund created as part of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention got $892.3 million last year for the fund, which mostly went to st