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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Schools waiting for FACT action

    The Arizona Board of Regents, along with Arizona’s three major public universities, have put together a collaborative group of economists, business school faculty members, and administrators to guide the state toward fiscal alternatives other than painful budget cuts.

    The group has been dubbed Fiscal Alternative Choices Team, or FACT.

    John A. Swain, one of the two FACT members from the UA, practiced law in Phoenix from 1987 to 1998, specializing in state and local taxation.

    “”I have some knowledge and experience that may be helpful to the state, and I’m also an Arizonan and I would like to help in any way that I can,”” said Swain, who became a law professor in 1999. “”I think the universities are a resource to the state.””

    Swain said FACT is still in the formative stages, and besides a meeting Friday, not much has occurred.

    “”We hope to have some proposals pretty soon, and we are thinking of how we can be helpful in the short term and also how we can be helpful in the longer term,”” Swain said. “”Beyond that, we do not have any concrete proposals to report at this time.””

    FACT is comprised of Robert Mittelstaedt, dean of the W.P. Carey School of Business of Arizona State University, Dennis Hoffman, university economist and associate dean of the William Seidman Research Institute of ASU, Robert Denhardt, director of the School of Public Affairs of ASU, Richard Stanley, senior vice president and university planner of ASU, John A. Swain, professor of tax law, UA James E. Rogers College of Law, Alberta Charney, senior research economist, Economic and Business Research Center, UA Eller College of Management, Marc Chopin, dean of the W.A. Franke College of Business of Northern Arizona University, and Ron Gunderson, professor of economics at NAU.

    “”These are difficult times, and the Arizona legislature did not create these difficult times. Like everyone they want to solve the budget problem, but everyone has different views on how to solve it,”” Swain said. “”I do not have an opinion on how they are handling it, but they certainly didn’t bring on the economic crisis and they are trying to react and adjust to it like everyone else in this country.””

    The team will most likely meet on a weekly basis, however it is still tentative whether the meetings will be open to the public, said regents President Fred Boice.

    “”We know the legislature is already looking to the next budget, so we would like to produce some ideas that are timely and helpful,”” Swain said.

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