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It took a spark to begin the Earth Day movement, when Ohio’s heavily-polluted Cuyahoga River caught fire in 1969. It was actually the 13th time parts of the river had burned since 1868 due to the waste, sewage and pollution factories dumped into the river.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

On Friday, the Arizona Department of Public Safety and Cottonwood police released the dashcam video showing the March 21 brawl in the parking lot of Wal-Mart that left one suspect dead, one police officer and another suspect shot and wounded, seven members of one family arrested on 60 criminal charges and the whole Verde Valley wondering what had happened.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

There appears to be no deadline set by the Arizona Department of Public Safety as to when its ongoing investigation report will be released to the media and Cottonwood area residents about the brawl and fatal shooting at Wal-Mart last month involving Cottonwood police and members of a transient family from Idaho.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

Just as the Verde Valley was dealing with the violence in Cottonwood between an eight-member Idaho family and eight police officers, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to an apparent homicide in Rimrock.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

In February 2014, I wrote an editorial “Yavapai College’s 10-year plan aims to rob Verde Valley” based on the college’s 10-year plan to siphon Sedona and Verde Valley tax revenue and pour more than 95 percent of its funding into services and programs in Prescott and Prescott Valley.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

Late last week, Arizonans witnessed a spat over educational policy explode into a vitriolic, public spectacle between Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

Douglas is a vocal, almost obsessive opponent of Common Core, the nationwide educational standard slowly replacing No Child Left Behind legislation — which created the expiring standardized test known as Arizona’s Instrument to Measure Standards. Douglas made her opposition to Common Core the single talking point of her campaign and vowed to repeal the law with all her power.

After years of absence, gears are in motion to reestablish the Camp Verde Chamber of Commerce.Managing Editor Christopher Fox Graham

Chambers of commerce function by focusing on winning the long game rather than short-term victories. Businesses and members who contribute on Monday may not see an immediate dollar-for-dollar return on Friday, but a few weeks down the road, see bigger returns and an overall boost making narrow, myopic examinations of finances hard to justify.

Facing a $500 million budget deficit this fiscal year, newly elected Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey released his proposed budget last month. While the budget addresses the deficit, Ducey’s plan to win short-term gains will hurt Arizona in the long run.Gov. Doug Ducey

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