Get out to know your legislators

Last month Arizonans elected a new group of state legislators to the Capitol. In a few weeks,  freshmen and senior members will be sworn in, making right now the perfect time for constituents to get to know their elected officials.

You have a golden opportunity over the next few weeks, to go and find out…who your legislators are. Look them up, get in contact with their office. Try to set up a cup of coffee,” Representative T.J. Shope (R-8) said at the Greater Phoenix Chamber Capitol Conversation event.

According to Shope, getting to know your legislators and reaching out to them will help inform decision making at the Capitol.

“I want to hear how my decisions impact you, your businesses and such,” he said. “Let’s talk about what our philosophies are, what our ideas are, what we share in common. I think you’re going to find, the next time you pick up the phone and talk to [an elected] official…you’re going to find you’re going to have a much easier time talking about things.”

Rep. Reginald Bolding (D-27) agreed, saying it is important for Arizonans to have their voice heard in the lawmaking process because sometimes laws are flawed.

“Many times, things that are in statute or in policy they were for a specific time, and that’s what needed to happen then but as we continue to evolve, and things continue to change we need to take a look at things that are currently on the books,” he said. “For some people, that makes them very uncomfortable. For others, we embrace change and I think the business community has really been one of the communities that has embraced change.”

According to Bolding, the Arizona business community has always been there to be “a voice of reason or a voice that’s going to talk about ways that we can attract people to Arizona.”

Both elected officials agreed that knowing your legislative district and getting a group of friends, neighbors, or colleagues together to meet with their legislators prior to the session starting will help both the lawmakers and constituents have a stronger relationship.

To find your legislative district, click here.

Emily Richardson

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