By Ben Giles | Arizona Capitol Times
Arizona’s Citizens Clean Elections Commission is months away from a crisis.
Two of the five appointed commissioners are overstaying their welcome. Their 5-year terms each expired in the past two years. Come January 2020, a third commissioner’s term will also expire.
The Clean Elections Act, approved by voters in 1998, states that commissioners “shall serve no more than one term” and are “not eligible for reappointment.”
And while there’s precedent elsewhere in state law to allow commissioners to continue to serve, they’d prefer if Gov. Doug Ducey takes his lawful turn to choose a new appointee.
By law, appointments to the Citizen Clean Elections Commission, or CCEC, alternate between the governor and the highest ranking elected official of the opposite political party. The last appointment was made by Katie Hobbs, then the Senate minority leader at a time when no Democrats served in statewide office.
That made her the highest-ranking Democrat in 2017, a title she can again claim now that she’s been elected secretary of state.
But according to statute, Hobbs can’t make another appointment until after Ducey. And the governor has gone without picking a new commissioner for more than 16 months, since Commissioner Steve Titla’s term expired on January 31, 2018.