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This month, Republicans who control the Arizona fractious Legislature came together with Democrats in a moment of unusual bipartisan accord. They passed a bill that would let Arizona’s home cooks register with the state to legally sell perishable foods like salsas and tamales.

But Katie Hobbs, the state’s new Democratic governor, vetoed the measure last week, citing concerns about the potential for food-borne illnesses, as well as rats and insects in home kitchens. Her veto set off a ferocious culinary and cultural backlash from the Capitol to kitchens across Arizona, offering a political lesson for the new governor: Do not mess with the tamale makers. READ MORE AT THE NEW YORK TIMES

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Latinos contributed at least $65.1 billion to the Phoenix-area economy, according to a new report measuring the gross domestic product of the region's fastest growing demographic group. That is higher than the entire economies of the states of Maine and North Dakota, the report found.

Latinos comprise 1.5 million, or 31% of the total Phoenix metro population. That makes the Phoenix metro area the 8th largest in the U.S. by Latino population. READ MORE AT AZCENTRAL

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Latinas Are Economic Engine of Arizona

Latinos represent more than 30 percent of Arizona’s population and bring more than $31 billion to the state’s economy, according to a recent study by Arizona’s Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, reports Maritza Lizeth Félix for Prensa Hispana. The report, “Datos: Focus on Arizona’s Hispanic Market 2010,” finds that Latina women have become an economic engine in the state. The study does not include the economic impact of undocumented immigrants.

In Numbers
$31.3 billion – the buying power of Latinos in Arizona
$47.9 billion – the amount Latinos are expected to spend in 2013
$951 billion – Latino buying power in the U.S., not including Puerto Ricans, whose buying power is estimated at $50 billion
63% of Arizona’s Latino population lives in Maricopa County
42% of the residents of Phoenix are Latino
1 in 4 children born in the U.S. in 2008 was of Hispanic descent READ MORE

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