How to adopt a desert tortoise from Arizona Game and Fish

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The deadline draws near: Anyone looking to adopt a desert tortoise this year from the Arizona Game and Fish Department needs to get their application in soon before it is time for the reptiles to hibernate for the winter.

Tegan Wolf, the desert tortoise adoption program coordinator for the department, said over email that she thinks Oct. 19 will be the application deadline this year, but “you want to get your application in as soon as possible.”

Wolf said close to 800 tortoises have been adopted since the program formally began in 2016.

Fred and Debbie Santesteban live in Chandler and decided to adopt a desert tortoise from Arizona Game and Fish in 2001. Today, Gus still lives in his burrow in their backyard. 

After two decades Gus has figured out some tricks: “He’ll open the door and come in for the day,” Fred said, explaining that Gus can

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Voting by video allowed in some circumstances, Arizona judge rules

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People wash their hands by the entrance to Sapphire of Tucson Nursing and Rehab on May 1, 2020. (Photo: David Wallace/The Republic)

Election officials in Arizona can use videoconferencing to help some voters confined to hospitals, nursing homes or living with severe disabilities cast their ballots, a judge ruled Monday, rejecting calls to declare the new pandemic-era practice illegal.

Attorney General Mark Brnovich asked the court to strike down plans adopted by the Maricopa County Recorder’s Office and Arizona Secretary of State’s Office for limited “virtual” voting assistance, arguing that state law does not allow anyone to cast a ballot by video.

Gov. Doug Ducey also opposed the policies, contending that state law requires officials provide such services in person.

But in a ruling that reflected how unusual this election year is, Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Randall H. Warner found that videoconferencing may be necessary for some voters

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Arizona fire grows to more than 12,400 acres, 3 homes burned

PHOENIX (AP) — Firefighters were working Monday to get a grip on a wildfire north of Phoenix that has destroyed several structures, including four homes.

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The blaze, which was first reported Friday afternoon in the Tonto National Forest, has grown to more than 19 square miles (49 square kilometers) with zero containment.

Forest officials said the wildfire is burning in grass and brush. But four homes, 10 outbuildings and several cars have been destroyed, according to fire spokeswoman Susan Blake. One of the homes that burned down was near a spring called Honeymoon Seep.

Some residents who evacuated were leaving summer homes. Crews continue to set backfires to help protect structures and other assets near Cave Creek. Firefighters are focused on suppressing flames on the fire’s northern side. They have already done some burn-out operations on the south side.

Those in the area can expect to see more

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As Arizona nursing homes reopen to visitors, state guidelines cause confusion

Many nursing homes and assisted living facilities in Arizona reopened to visitors earlier this month after being closed to most outsiders for months because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Visiting elder loved ones in care facilities during the coronavirus pandemic

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But rolling out the welcome mat has been anything but smooth.

Senior advocates and operators of long-term facilities say guidelines issued by Arizona Department of Health Services are causing confusion, with some managers incorrectly interpreting the guidelines to limit visits to only 15 minutes.



a bedroom with a bed and desk in a room: Abuse or neglect in nursing homes can have serious consequences for seniors.


© Wavebreakmedia, Getty Images/iStockphoto
Abuse or neglect in nursing homes can have serious consequences for seniors.

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Other requirements — such as proof of a negative COVID-19 test within 48 hours and quarantining before each visit — make scheduling indoor visits difficult or impossible for working families.

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