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1 March 3 - 16, 2012 Section Name March 3 - 16, 2012 Back on track: Chandler welcomes new homes, business by Miriam Van Scott After a long economic slump followed by whispers the recession might finally be over and a turnaround on the way, Chandler is now showing concrete signs it’s experiencing a significant, sustainable recovery. “New single family permits over the past year have varied between 20 and 60 per month and are certainly trending up from a few years ago, when one month we issued one permit,” says Chandler City Planner Jeff Kurtz. “In February last year we issued 31 single family home permits, and 46 (this) February.” Kurtz says the permits are for existing subdivisions, but says change is on the horizon. “We have also had a couple new subdivisions begin development, which has not been the case over the past few years.” City officials see this trend as a harbinger of expansion that goes far beyond a few new homes spread across the SanTan Sun area. See Development, Page 6 BEAT GOES ON: Michael Plunkett, a musical therapist from ASU, leads the crowd at a recent drum circle at the Chandler Farmer’s Market. The drum circle is a growing community rhythm event on the second Thursday in March, April and May during the weekly market in historic downtown Chandler. Drums are provided or drummers can bring their own. For more information, contact Bart Salzman at STSN photo New DUI laws take effect by Miriam Van Scott Arizona has some of the toughest laws in the nation regarding driving under the influence (DUI), even after recently passed adjustments to the statute reduced some of the penalties. Among the 2012 changes now in effect are revisions to ignition interlock requirements, easing of work release conditions and LEGAL EAGLE: Chandler attorney Robert Dossey specializes in DUI and criminal law. Submitted photo elimination of jury trials for first-time offenders. “Arizona has very strict DUI laws compared to most other states, and much more significant penalties,” says Chandler attorney Robert Dossey. “There are 19 changes to the DUI law, such as when does the Ignition Interlock Device provision apply. Home detention for DUI offenders has been expanded, and a DUI defendant’s right to a jury trial has been limited.” The new legislation also clarifies the definition of what constitutes a DUI under state law. “DUI stands for driving under the influence, but the statutory language refers to driving while impaired,” notes Dossey.  “Impairment can mean a blood alcohol content (BAC) as low as .05%.  Per statute, a driver is definitely impaired when his or her BAC is .08 or over, or if any drugs, prescription or illegal, are found in the driver’s system.” Arizona’s stringent laws have helped reduce DUI fatalities statewide during the past few years, however driving under the influence is still a pervasive problem in the SanTan Sun area and beyond. And for drivers charged with this crime, the repercussions of operating a vehicle while impaired can be devastating. “Thousands of DUIs are prosecuted in Arizona each year,” Dossey reports. “Most DUIs are first time so the statutory minimum is 24 hours in jail and approximately $1,500 in fines, fees and surcharges.  However jail time for a misdemeanor DUI can be as long as six months, and the fine can be Orchestra recruits closet musicians by K. M. Lang Reading, writing, arithmetic and music — March is Music In Our Schools month, honoring the school-sponsored programs that have allowed countless children to learn an instrument with a class full of peers, then perform to an audience of enthusiastic friends and family. Still, while some go on to pursue music careers after graduation, the majority of young musicians, with no posthigh school performances pending, return their beloved instruments to their cases and stow them in their closets. LIFELONG MUSICIAN: Clemente Ranch resident Katherine Shields took up the viola in the fourth grade, began conducting during high school and went on to earn a doctorate in performance. As director of the San Tan Orchestra, Shields now helps other musicians recapture the joy of performing. Submitted photo by Solo Staff See Orchestra, Page 8 See DUI, Page 9 Inside: COVER STORIES: Discuss HHS antenna pole . .. . . . . . . . . .COMMUNITY . . . . . . 4 Cork cuisine, service shine . . . . . . . . .BUSINESS . . . . . . . 21 Coasting toward competitive fun . .YOUTH . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Audrey Ryan obituary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .NEIGHBORS . . . . . 43 SanTan Center Spread: FAMILY FUN Community .......4-13 Business .........14-21 Youth ..............23-36 Opinion ...........37-38 Neighbors .......47-56 Spirituality......57-61 AZ Arts............63-69 Directory.........70-72 Classifieds ......73-74 Where to eat ...75-78

STS News Issue 3-3-2012

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