Thursday, February 12, 2009

Odds and Ends - By Mark R. Kerr

At the nation’s capital, Washington D.C., the first positive Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) legislation to be introduced in the 111th Congress will be the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA).

U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler, D-New York, will file the bill on Thursday, February 12. Nadler has been the original, prime sponsor of UAFA, when he introduced the measure during the 110th Congress, in May 2007.

UAFA, if passed and signed into law, would require binational same-sex couples to prove that they intend lifelong commitment to one another as permanent partners, that they are financially interdependent, that they are currently unmarried to anyone else, that they are unrelated to each other, and that they are unable to "contract with that person a marriage cognizable under the Immigration and Nationality Act," according to the original bill. The bill would also change terminology to define those couples as "permanent partners" instead of "spouses." ...

With the funding for programs and services to help those living with or affected by HIV/AIDS to be severely reduced or eliminated altogether by Arizona’s Legislature with the pending budget crisis, the Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation (SAAF) and its Executive Director, Wendell Hicks, is urging everyone to take action by adding their name to a Proclamation to President Barack Obama requesting his leadership in creating a National AIDS Strategy.

This Presidential Proclamation asks for President Obama’s leadership in creating a National AIDS Strategy, increasing and reallocating national funding for HIV/AIDS, and requesting his support to help put an end to new HIV infections. To read the full proclamation, go online to To “sign” this, send an E-mail to with your name to be added to the proclamation, and include "National AIDS Strategy" in the subject line. ...

According to the sources at the Arizona State Capital, the budget boogie - the second at of dancing away the future of the state to please the handlers of the Republican-controlled Arizona House and Senate, the very rich, will continue, most likely for the next three months at a minimum

An interesting point Friday, April 24, will mark the 100th day of the First Session of this 49th Legislature, the Republican mandated day to finish all work and at $62,163.29 a day to operate both chambers at 1700 West Washington in Phoenix, once again Arizonans, tax dollars are going to waste, again, and this isn’t including per diem and mileage!

Online, Arizona's Legislature can be found at or for those without Internet access, to reach their Legislators call (800) 352-8404. Let them know, especially the “leadership” in both chambers to invest in the state’s future and get the work done, quickly. ...

Even with all that is going on in Tucson, there are elections to be held in the city, specifically for the City Council seats in Ward 3, Ward 5 and Ward 6 and as previously reported, the first open Lesbian elected to political office in Southern Arizona, Karin Uhlich, has announced her intentions to seek another term.

Uhlich has been there for the LGBT and HIV/AIDS communities during her tenure on the Counci, helping to defeat Arizona Proposition 107 in 2006, spearheading the fight to battle Arizona Proposition 102 in 2008, so that Pima County voted down the measure, ensuring that municipal funding for programs and services to the LGBT and HIV/AIDS communities continue. Featuring her family, her wonderful partner Shannon and darling daughter Brennan in the Families You Know campaign initiated by Wingspan.

Before her election to represent Ward 3 on the Tucson City Council in 2005, Karin served as a volunteer on advisory committees to the Mayor and Council, including the Budget Advisory Committee, which she chaired in 1996, the Bond Oversight Committee from 1997 to 2003, and the Blue Ribbon Charter Advisory Committee in 2000. On the City Council, Karin has concentrated on improving the local economy with a particular focus on Tucson neighborhoods, families and small businesses; on improving public safety by attacking crime from all angles; and on setting a higher bar for transparency and accountability in City government.

For more information about Ward 3 Councilmember Karin Uhlich and her campaign, go online to

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