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PHOENIX-The Arizona Republic reports that Arizona legislators are tossing around the idea of selling government buildings through a sale-leaseback arrangement. The proposed transaction could provide the state with a “fast infusion” of as much as $735 million, the Republic notes.

The article points out that once deals are approved, money could start flowing into state coffers in as little as 90 days. The Republic article says the 32 state properties that could be headed to the sales block include the state’s House and Senate buildings, the Phoenix and Tucson headquarters of the Arizona Department of Public Safety, the State Hospital and fairgrounds. Some prison facilities could also be offered up for sale. When combined, the assets have a combined replacement value in excess of $1 billion, the article reports.

The controversial plan does have bipartisan backing, though Arizona governor Jan Brewer earlier this month vetoed sale-leaseback provisions, as well as the majority of a fiscal 2010 state budget plan that had been sent to her by the Legislature, the Republic article says.

The state currently faces an estimated shortfall of $3.4 billion, with reserves drained and no desire for spending cuts. Read more about the story here.

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