Crafty Chica

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You may have seen her on television or read her books and columns. We’ll introduce you to the “Crafty Chica,” Kathy Cano-Murillo, known for bringing her Latina flair to the crafting world.

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
A citizens' group wants the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors to do a better job of monitoring public money spent by the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
Plus, she is known worldwide as the "Crafty Chica". See how her hobby has turned into a Latina crafting phenomenon in s.o.c. sounds of cultura.

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
And from emergency response to border infrastructure, leaders from Arizona and Mexico meet to talk about issues affecting the region. All these stories coming up next, on "Horizonte."

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
Hundreds of people attended the Maricopa county board of supervisors' meeting last Thursday as it finalized a 2008 and 2009 fiscal budget. Some of the protesters were from a new group, the Maricopa citizens for safety and accountability. They want the Maricopa county board of supervisors to monitor sheriff Joe Arpaio's enforcement of immigration laws and hold him accountable for the amount of public tax dollars spent by his office. The supervisors say they must approve the sheriff's budget, but because he is an elected official, they cannot tell him how to spend it. Joining me to talk about this new group is Raquel Terán. Raquel is project director for Maricopa citizens for safety and accountability. Welcome. Raquel. Thank you for joining us.

>>Raquel Teran:
thank you for having us.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
your organization, what is the purpose? Why did you come together? Why was it organized?

>>Raquel Teran:
Maricopa citizens for safety and accountability is a newly formed coalition. We are concerned Maricopa citizens. We are concerned about safety and accountability. Our goal is to hold the board of supervisors accountable for the mismanagement and lack of leadership in the Maricopa county sheriff's office.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
and I understand that your group attended the board of supervisors' meeting last week.

>> Raquel Teran:
correct.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
the article said there were protests and that your group testified at the meeting. Can you tell us about that?

>> Raquel Teran:
absolutely. We had a successful turnout at the board of supervisors. Yes, many--much of the media covered it as a protest. It was not a protest. We attended the meeting as regular citizens and we explained and we talked about our concerns. Our concerns of how our tax dollars are being spent in mounting lawsuits. Our concerns about 70,000 warrants. Our concern about foreclosures and our concern about more cases against sheriff Joe Arpaio

>>Paulina Vazquez Morris:
What did you hope the outcome would be at the supervisors' meeting?

>> Raquel Teran:
well, the goal is to build capacity in our community. We were able to raise enough concern in the community of what is happening with the sheriffs office. Our goal was to ask for transparency to ask that the sheriff's office respond to the board on a monthly basis in regards to their expenditures.

>>Paulina Vazquez Morris:
has your organization attended previous board of supervisors' meetings or was this first one.?

>> Raquel Teran:
this was first time we attended as a coalition.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
how did they respond?

>> Raquel Teran:
this was not the way we originally planned to meet with the board of supervisors. we attempted to meet with them by letter. we attempted to meet with them by phone and email but we were not successful. the only supervisor that we were able to meet with was supervisor wilcox and we will continue to attempt to meet with them and see how we can work together.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris: ideally again, what would you like the sheriff to do or the board of supervisors to do specifically that you feel your organization is calling for? what would be ideal for that accountability, for that transparency that your organization is interested in?

>> Raquel Teran:
we are asking that the sheriff's office come and report not board of supervisors offer a monthly basis. they have nothing to hide. so there's a report basically of what and how they are spending their money, our money.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
earlier we had the opportunity to talk with Maricopa supervisor Mary rose wilcox.

>> Mary Rose Wilcox:
they wrote a letter and asked for a formal meeting. I responded. I did meet with them. I don't think any other of my colleagues did. the sheriff's budget is on the website. if you go to www.maricopa.gov. you can find his budget. what's not on the web site and what we do receive if we request them is a monthly accounting making sure he's keeping balance on budget. my intention is to request them and hand them out to citizens. there's nothing wrong with that. it's public information. if need be ask budget to sit down with citizens and explain what is this. many times budgets are very complicated. I think in the spirit of transparency, I will ask budget to meet with them once a month and go over the report. I don't know if the figures are correct but I would surmise it's 40 million or higher over the last few years. one of things the group asked for and our county management I think is putting together what has been the cost of lawsuits? that means people who have settled outside of court. people who have gone to court and you have to look at both sides of it. how many have settled and what is the cost? how many have we won? our staff is preparing that. we have risk management which is part of overall budget and we have insurance and also we pay a portion and insurance pays. risk management is portion of the budget set aside for the lawsuits not only for the sheriff but the other county department. the sheriff has been called on that. he needs to address that. in a meeting the other day he said there were about 50,000. I believe that was number he gave us. a lot he says is other jurisdictions. I think it's a fair question and one that the governor has set aside monies at dps for governments to get money to go after warrants. I hope the sheriff becomes part of that umbrella organization and cleans up the backlog. I can't speak for my other colleagues. I think our jails, many of the issues that the sheriffs' department deals with are being run. maybe everything's not excellent but they are being run as they have in the past and we have no problem. where we have a problem and, I, as a supervisor have a problem is with the raids and sweeps that they are called that the sheriff has embarked on. I really feel he is bordering on racial profiling with the sweeps. that's why I have spoken up against them. I've been around a long time. I have served 16 years at the county. I have always felt we are pretty open government. we have a website now. a lot of information can be gotten on the website. it may be that citizens don't understand some of the information. just recently our county manager met with members of this group and valley interfaith and explained some of the lawsuits that have been settled, you know, explained some of the policies within the jails and so I think anytime we can offer more transparency, we should. I think anytime you get that many people knocking on our doors and saying there's an issue we have a problem with and we would like discussion, it's our responsibility to have that discussion. when they introduce themselves at our board meeting, you're from district two, district three, my district, district five. they are across the board mar cope pa county. I don't think we should ever be afraid of citizens and their requests. I think we should answer them as open as we can, as truthfully as we can and listen if they have a problem with policies.

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
she's known as the "crafty chica". horizonte's Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez reports how the crafty chica is showing others. how to make art with a touch of Latino style. ¶[ music ]¶

>> Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
meet one of the valley's most skilled craft artist, Kathy Cano-Murillo, but she's better known as the crafty chica. for nearly eight years this Latina has been making all types of arts and crafts with a touch of Latino flare. while at the same time teaching her fans how to also be their own crafty chica.

>> Kathy Cano-Murillo:
I call it squeezing a dollar out of the dime. I heard that phrase in one of my favorite movies. it's just about taking something smaller about yourself and making it bigger and really, really embracing it and celebrating it and, you know, that's the whole thing of the crafty chica whether it's an art project or an idea that you have or something about your personality that you are really proud of.

>> Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
Kathy was the crafty idea columnist for the Arizona republic. her column shared new projects and enhanced old ones. after a short local run, her column became a hit and it soon went national, published in numerous cities around the country.

>>Kathy Cano-Murillo:
I love the thought that all these people were reading about my goofy little craft project ideas. I've always been the kind of person to think what is that next level? so I thought of people who didn't subscribe to the newspaper who I wanted to reach them as well. so one day at work I was on deadline for a story and it just popped in my head, crafty chica.

>> Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
in no time she created a website and linked her readers to the crafty chica homepage. with the help of her husband Patrick, an artist in his own right, Kathy began sharing her ideas. the crafty chica advertisement free website gets 2 million to 3 million hits a month marketed by word-of-mouth and link trades and the ideas are all free. this crafty chica made what some call a hobby into a working adventure.

>>Kathy Cano-Murillo:
we call it enthusiastic desperation where we knew we needed to have all these different avenues to bring in income to keep working. that was back in the day in the early '90s when we first got married. now here it is many, many years later and all of those things have really escalated to bigger national-level type of projects. the main bulk of what I do is the website. it's free. I have never had ads on there. I run it all by myself. all I do is post projects for people to make. I post what it is like to be in my shoes. some days it's good. some days it's bad. I just share it on there. and people comment on it and that's like a really fun part of it that I love is the networking aspect of it.

>> Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
the profits she makes are in her 48 various trademark products sold at craft stores throughout the company they include crafty chica fabric paint, glitter, stencils, books and workshop craft kits.

>>Kathy Cano-Murillo:
all the different things that Patrick and I have used over the years in our artwork that we've sold, even our trade secrets, we packaged them up in a cool workshop in a box and we have our paints and on every box I put a little tip on how to use it because I know when we started as artists, we didn't have a lot of money to spend on supplies. so these products are like what we started with and I put on there all the different ways that you can use them so that people will really, you know, be able to stretch them out.

>> Nadine Arroyo Rodriguez:
that's not all. Kathy will release her first novel in 2009.

>>Kathy Cano-Murillo:
I love it. I mean, to me writing is like making art except instead of choosing paint colors, you're choosing words. I just love that. it can take you to a whole different place. my idea is that I just want to keep posting more and more projects because eventually one will hit. you know, I figure the more I post on there, the more chances of someone seeing something and saying okay, that I can make. you know, I'm going to try that. it's such a great feeling for them to write me back and send me a picture of what they made. I'm like yes, they are converted.

>>>Paulina Vazquez Morris:
Kathy Cano-Murillo and her husband have an upcoming exhibition, "la casa murillo: a life-size shadowbox" that will be on display at the heard museum starting in October.

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
governor Janet Napolitano and sonoran governor Eduardo bours castelo met with community leaders, business leaders, and legislators from Arizona and Mexico this month to talk about policies to improve the quality of life of people living in the Arizona Sonora region. joining me to talk about this year's Arizona Mexico commission's summer plenary session is Marco Lopez junior. Lopez is vice chair for the Arizona Mexico commission and the senior advisor to the governor on international affairs. welcome Marco.

>>Marco Lopez Jr.
:thank you.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
you had a plenary session over the weekend and I understand you had a lot of work accomplished at that time. can you tell us a little bit about the highlights.

>> Marco Lopez Jr.:
absolutely. about 400 people came together from Arizona and Sonora to meet with the governors and focus on a couple of issues. out of session there were eight agreements that were signed between both governors on Saturday. they encompassed a variety of things. one couple focused on the border security and safety. the other set focused on emergency management and response and how we deal with issues of mitigating emergency events that occur on both sides of the border or have the possibility of crossing or try versing the border. finally the issue of the economy and how our outdated ports of entry in Arizona are affecting the way people do business from one side of the border to the other. and how over the course of the last five years we've seen that impact affect and hurt the Arizona economy. it was a very big variety of topics but yet I'll tell you the leadership that both governor Napolitano and governor bours have expressed on all of these issues is really a model, a model that other border communities are looking at as examples that I hope will make the Arizona Sonora region a more prosperous one.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
the agreement that was signed regarding training of law enforcement officers, what does that entail?

>>Marco Lopez Jr.:
one of the agreements we were fortunate enough to have the governor sign was the agreement between the Arizona department of public safety and the Sonora department of public safety and atf, alcohol, tobacco and firearms federal agency. and in this agreement we see that the same cartels that run drugs and smuggle immigrants from south to north, from Mexico to Arizona are the same group smuggling weapons illegally into Mexico and specifically Sonora and money. this agreement allows local law enforcement on both sides of the border. on our side it's specifically geared towards Douglas, Nogales, san Luis and Tucson and sheriff's office's of Cochise and Yuma and Santa Cruz and pima county and the tohono odum nation. the goal is to interdict weapons that are going south into Mexico before they get there. in the cases the weapons do get into Sonora and they were involved in crimes, law enforcement on the sonoran side of the border will have the ability to trace and have a database where they can input those serial numbers and immediately Arizona law enforcement will be alert to it. e-trace, is the name of the program, they can trace back who purchased the weapons and where they were purchased. this with the intent of making sure that those folks that do deal in arms know that it doesn't matter where that gun ends up, at the end of the day you are going to be responsible. and law enforcement will have the tools to come after you. we want to be very clear to them that no longer is it fair game to be in Arizona or Sonora and hide from the law. we will get you. that's the aim of this specific agreement that the governors signed that we call e-trace because software in the program that law enforcement will be trained in.

>>Paulina Vazquez Morris:
do we have the appropriate software? the appropriate systems, infrastructure in order to implement the agreement?

>> Marco Lopez Jr.:
we do. part of what is also being funded is the ability for the communities I mentioned to have the checkpoints facilities to check vehicles as they go south right before the border. you know, last year the department of public safety seized 533 illegal weapons in Arizona. that number it is believed that the majority of those weapons would have made it into Sonora. once they make it into there, it is too late. atf last year seized a little bit over 10,000 weapons. so you can imagine the urgency that is focusing on this issue involves. as the Mexican federal government begins to squeeze these drug cartels in Mexico, what the governors are trying to make sure occurs is that the violence that is occurring in el Paso and other areas does not spread to the Arizona Sonora region. we have been really lucky. we have been really lucky that we have had proactive governors looking at issues to prevent what is occurring in other border communities from occurring here. I think that's the ultimate goal to make Arizona and Sonora the safest border region between u.s. and Mexico. I think we are making great strides towards that. we are making great strides towards that with the agreement signed involving d.e.a. making sure individuals who are dealing drugs not prosecuted by the federal authorities that at least we are sharing the information with Sonora so they can follow up with them there. we are also making strides because there are over 60,000 felony warrants outstanding in Arizona. now what we are doing through a third agreement that was signed this weekend, we are sharing that database and asking Sonora to give us their database so then what happens if somebody commit a crime in Sonora and comes in Arizona and vice versa if they commit a crime in Arizona and they go to Sonora and are stopped by law enforcement, we will know who it is and if they are wanted on the other side of border. this is critical because fugitives and those that commit crimes, those individuals that commit crimes know they have an easy way out and that is to get on the other side of the border. whatever side you are on. well, the message here is again you will no longer be able to do that between Arizona and Sonora because of the proactive nature of both governors. in all of the areas I think the message is where the federal government has failed to act, where the federal government has been slow to act Arizona and Sonora's governors are stepping up to the plate to take care of business.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
other border states are viewing this as a model?

>> Marco Lopez Jr.:
absolutely in the case of atf e-trace agreement the border governors comprised of Arizona, Texas, new Mexico and California and six counterparts on the Mexican side will take up the issue august 13th and 14th in California. governor Schwarzenegger is hosting the meeting. this is one of the objectives that will come out of that so it can be replicated on the entire u.s. Mexico border. it's a model not just in this realm but many other areas.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
how will the outcomes of the agreements be measured and monitored? will you come back and report on the effectiveness?

>> Marco Lopez Jr.:
you know, the governors are really quick to make sure that we have clear time lines and clear objectives to that end, they have in their next meeting December 5th and between now and then, we will have--we have the mandate to be sure that we have a set of accomplishments. they will find out how many fugitives have been caught on either side of the border, how many weapons have been seized through the new agreement and how many people have been prosecuted with a focus on drug runners. yes, we have very clear objectives and the governors will be checking up on those accomplishments as early as December 5th.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
that's the next plenary session?

>>Marco Lopez Jr.:
that'll be the next plenary session that is held in Sonora. we alternate. the summer is in Arizona and the winter and the fall is in Sonora.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
I know you also worked on ports of entry. can you explain that to us and what the agreement is about?

>> Marco Lopez Jr.:
absolutely. our ports of entry are our life blood. we know for every billion dollars in trade it creates about 14,000 jobs in the Arizona economy. it's vitally important. what we also know is that over the course of the last five years our traffic from south to north into Arizona has decreased because of our outdated port system. our ports in Douglas, Nogales and san Luis, the Yuma area, have an average age of 30 years which means that other ports of entry in California and Texas that are newer than ours have the latest technology to get people in and out quickly, safely and securely. we don't have that. what the governors signed as well is the 2015 new border plan for Arizona. what this will do is sets out a blueprint between now and 2015 of all the improvements and a timeline to reach those improvements so we present to the federal government all of our needs and necessities. it's not acceptable that Arizona that Arizona has ports that are over 30 years old with no clear hope of having them revamped. when the port of entry in Nogales was built about 20 years ago, it was bult to hold and process about 400 trucks a day. it is now processing close to 2,000 trucks a day with the same infrastructure. with that we have six to seven hours wait time. it's not acceptable. it's not acceptable for fresh produce coming into the country to be sitting out there for seven to eight hours and spoiling with a loss of about $200 million a year. here again, the governors are identifying a need and they are going towards the source of how we're going to solve it. we hope by 2015 this problem will be solved. by that year all of our ports will be updated. we'll have the newest technology and more importantly we'll be able to compete. right now it's a competitive problem. we cannot compete with California and Texas with the growing number of trade and interest with Mexico, central and south America, goods coming into Arizona, we cannot compete.

>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
well, Marco, thank you so much for joining us. I know we could talk about a lot more of the agreements. I wish you luck and we'll wait to hear about the outcomes.

>> Marco Lopez Jr.:
thank you very much.

>>> Paulina Vazquez Morris:
next week, the latest legal challenge to Arizona's employer sanctions law. this and more topics discussed on horizonte's "journalists' roundtable." that's 7:30 next Thursday on "Horizonte." And, for all of us here at Horizonte, I'm Paulina Vazquez Morris. thank you for joining us. have a great evening.

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