Arizona Wins Luke Case

A Maricopa County Superior Court judge took the state’s side in the dispute over land use around Luke Air Force Base, reports the Arizona Republic. Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard, who filed the lawsuit to protect Luke from potential residential encroachment generated by building permits issued by Maricopa County, said in a Feb. 10 statement, “This is a victory for the state, but more importantly for the West Valley communities that depend on Luke and for the dedicated airmen training there.” One of the West Valley group, Glendale Mayor Elaine Scruggs, told the newspaper: “I’m just happy it’s behind us, and I feel it came out the way we always thought it would come out, that the state law applied to everybody, including Maricopa County.” Arizona considers Luke a “finalist” in the running to operate as a training facility for the new F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter. Goddard said he will “continue to fight” to “make Luke the home of the next great fighter jet and extend the base’s mission for another 40 to 50 years.” (The ruling)