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January 10, 2013

Host: José Cárdenas

Get to Know: Julio Cesar Morales

  |   Video
  • The Arizona Art Museum has a new curator, Get to Know Julio Cesar Morales. Before coming to the museum, Morals served as adjunct curator at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.
Category: Community   |   Keywords: get to know, julio morales, ,

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Jose Cardenas: The ASU art museum has a new curator. Julio Cesar Morales started back in the fall. Before coming to the museum, Morales served as adjunct curator at Yerba Buena center for the arts in San Francisco. We will get to know Julio Cesar Morales in a moment, but first, here is a clip from "Interrupted passage," a film exploring the diverse history of California. Morales directed it and the film is currently in a traveling exhibition. [suspenseful music]

Jose Cardenas: Joining me now is Julio Cesar Morales, ASU art museum's new curator. Welcome to "Horizonte" and welcome to Arizona. Item us about the segment we just saw.

Julio Cesar Morales: This film is called "Interrupted passage." And essentially, it boils down to the last eight hours of California was Mexico. So I worked on this project as an artist. I am also an artist as well as a curator and the project looks at the last eight hours in 1846, right before the eruption and the war between the United States and Mexico, specially General Vallejo. Basically what I am interested in in the project is how General Vallejo negotiated the feature of California after an eight-hour meal he helped cook.

Jose Cardenas: And this shows, we mentioned it's part of a traveling exhibition but it's also on display at the house itself.

Julio Cesar Morales: Yes. Well, it was shot in the Vallejos' house in Sonoma.

Jose Cardenas: It is it's a tourist attraction.

Julio Cesar Morales: It's the first time they let anyone shoots inside the complete house.

Jose Cardenas: What was the point that you were trying to emphasize? It's about seven minutes long?

Julio Cesar Morales: It's seven minutes long. No dialogue. It's just movement and sound. And I think one of the interesting things for me is because a lot of my work deals with the border issues or issues related to the border, I wanted to go back 150 years before, and just kind of explore when California really was Mexico. And also what I am interested in is Vallejo's back ground and utilizing hospitality and utilizing food as a way of negotiating.

Jose Cardenas: And you yourself are part of the border in your background. Both Tijuana and San Diego.

Julio Cesar Morales: I was born in Tijuana and then I moved a block away to San Diego to San Ysidro.

Jose Cardenas: How has that influenced your work?

Julio Cesar Morales: I think it influenced my work very dramatically in regards to, you know, just as a person, coming from one culture to another and being bicultural in that sense, and also the idea of language and how movement affects how you deal in both situations, whether you are in Mexico or the United States.

Jose Cardenas: Let's talk a little bit about your work as a curator.

Julio Cesar Morales: Sure.

Jose Cardenas: With you mentioned that you are most recently at Yerba Buena. Talk about that institution and the things you have done there.

Julio Cesar Morales: The Yerba Buena center for the arts is in San Francisco. And I spent about four years there where I did a series of projects called pause projects. Essentially, I work would with artists from Latin America, from Asia and from the United States, develop a series of laboratory-based projects.

Jose Cardenas: And then you are now at ASU.

Julio Cesar Morales: I am now I am at ASU.

Jose Cardenas: What brought you here?

Julio Cesar Morales: I think I was really interested in the rich history of Arizona, and also its current climate as well. But also the work that was done here before by my previous predecessor, john Spiak. I was very interested in looking at how art now can really engage with social issues. And essentially what I have been working on at ASU for the last couple of months is developing a new series of projects that can really kind of create a bridge between art and social life.

Jose Cardenas: Now, when you say you were attracted by the climate I assume you are not referring to the weather.

Julio Cesar Morales: This is the west weather right now, we are in January. But, no, a cultural climate. You know, I am always interested in seeing how art can push the boundaries, how art can maybe negotiate and how art can create a bridge between certain situations outside of the museum and outside of the art itself.

Jose Cardenas: And more specifically, I take it, the reference is to the immigration debates that have been going on.

Julio Cesar Morales: Sure.

Jose Cardenas: In Arizona and we have got some pictures that we want to show from one of the exhibitions that you were involved in that captured part of the immigration issue. We have got one of the pictures on the screen. Tell us what we are looking at.

Julio Cesar Morales: So this project is called -- sorry, "Undocumented intervention." And this project originated at the art museum, and essentially traveled for a few years and actually was here in Phoenix at the art museum here. So this is, as I mentioned, growing up in Tijuana, I was really interested in this imagery because it came from the immigration service's website. All these images are what I use as the content for the water color.

Jose Cardenas: And when you say from the website. We are talking about pictures of various ways that people have attempted to cross the border.

Julio Cesar Morales: Exactly.

Jose Cardenas: And that one was an illustration of somebody inside --

Julio Cesar Morales: Inside the car.

Jose Cardenas:A chair.

Julio Cesar Morales: And essentially, that work also is about labor and it's also about the, how the United States often deals with labor and essentially since I am from Tijuana, people go a lot of these very extreme situations and dangerous situations, they place themselves to come here and work.

Jose Cardenas: We had another one on the screen, somebody inside a dashboard.

Julio Cesar Morales: Yes, inside a dashboard. Essentially in Tijuana there's places where you can pay someone to change your car seat so you can fit someone in it.

Jose Cardenas: And this will all -- this is one of those car seats?

Julio Cesar Morales: Yes. This is, these are all failed border crossing attempts. So every one in this series has been caught crossing over. And you can see how, you know, take a lot of the things that are not completely necessary in a seat or a dashboard and you place someone in there and then you close it up. And you hope or you pray that they are not going to find you.

Jose Cardenas: We have one more, which I was just fascinated in terms of the, it's a young child we are look at inside of a pinata.

Julio Cesar Morales: That's right. That's SpongeBob. So this is also based on the same series where sometimes they are trying to unite families here in the United States, and these kind of desperate measures call for very creative endeavors as well. So one of the ways people have started to attempt to come here to the United States is placing children inside custom-made pinatas.

Jose Cardenas: Fascinating. Tell us about what you are doing now at ASU. And some things that might be upcoming.

Julio Cesar Morales: Sure. So what we have coming up at ASU that, my first co-curated project is working with the Humex collection, a collection out of Mexico City. It's one of the most important art collections in the world. Jose Cardenas: It's really only the third time they show their collection in the United States.

Jose Cardenas: Jumex refers to the Mexican juice company?

Julio Cesar Morales: Yes. The heir to the juice company decided to create an important collection. And he's been doing it for about 15 years, and we chose work that really resonates about some of these issues that we have talked about in this conversation. Essentially, artworks that deal with labor, that deal with boundaries and deal with movement.

Jose Cardenas: Can you give us a sense for what some of the images are?

Julio Cesar Morales: Sure. Some of the workings they're from diorama to photographs of people going, crossing borders, going through airports. Really amazing artists, both from Latin America and the United States.

Jose Cardenas: From Europe?

Julio Cesar Morales: From Europe as well. And the exhibition will open on March 22nd.

Jose Cardenas: And these are mostly contemporary artists?

Julio Cesar Morales: They are all contemporary artists.

Jose Cardenas: From a variety of regions. What is it you hope to accomplish with this? We are almost out of time.

Julio Cesar Morales: Sure. With this exhibition or in general with my position?

Jose Cardenas: Both.

Julio Cesar Morales: I think with this exhibition, we hope that people are aware of this amazing collection in Mexico that houses one of the most important collections in the world. And besides that, also part of what I wanted to do is create more of a dialogue between the art community here, ASU, in regards to the university with students, but also with Latin America. So part of the focus is also working with artists in Latin America within the next programming phase of ASU art museum.

Jose Cardenas: Julio Cesar Morales, new ASU art cure 80er, thank you for joins us on "Horizonte." That is our show for tonight. From all of us here at "Horizonte," I am José Cardenas. Have a good night.

Immigration Rule Change

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  • Obama administration officials announced a U.S. immigration rule change that will allow American citizens to avoid long separations from their immediate family members who are undocumented immigrants as they apply to become legal residents. Under the new rule, a U.S. citizen can petition for a waiver while the non-citizens remain in the U.S waiting for a decision. Attorney Delia Salvatierra, Chair of the Immigraton Section or the State Bar of Arizona talks about the rule.
Category: Immigration   |   Keywords: immigration, rule, change.,

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Jose Cardenas: The Obama administration announced a new immigration rule to make it easier for undocumented immigrants who are immediate family members of American citizens to apply for permanent residency. Joining me to talk about this new rule is attorney Delia Salvatierra, chair of the immigration section for the state bar of Arizona. Welcome back to "Horizonte."

Delia Salvatierra: Thank you for having me.

Jose Cardenas: We have talked about a number of different things with you in connection with recent developments. This is the newest.

Delia Salvatierra: The newest and of great impact to those noncitizens who are married to U.S. citizens. And will be able to apply for permanent resident status. The benefit of the rule is based on the fact that when a noncitizen is applying for immigration benefits, that they enter the country without a Visa. In other words, illegally. They cannot obtain a green card in the United States. They must travel back to their home country in order to obtain that green card. But that usually requires lengthy separation from their U.S. citizen families.

Jose Cardenas: How long are we talking about in.

Delia Salvatierra: Anywhere from four months to a year or year and a half. So the process can take quite a while. Now, with the state side waiver process, it's only a change in process, not necessarily a change in law, but will allow the noncitizen to apply for the waiver inside the United States, obtaining an approval of that waiver for a lawful presence for having lived here without status before departing and returning home to obtain that immigrant Visa. It takes out the anxiety of returning home without knowing whether the waiver will be approved or not.

Jose Cardenas: So They still have to leave the country?

Delia Salvatierra: Absolutely.

Jose Cardenas: But they are gone for a much shorter period of time?

Delia Salvatierra: Yes. We will probably reduce that period of time two and three weeks. They will still have to attend a consular interview and determine if they have other areas of ineligibility. A fingerprint background check and a medical examination. So folks won't step up to the front of the line. They are already immediate relatives married to United States citizens. They will be able to return home with an approved waiver and come back in a matter of weeks.

Jose Cardenas: Does the overall length of the process to get the permanent residency, is the shorter or the same?

Delia Salvatierra: I am not sure at this point. I think that it may take a little bit longer because you will venture to say the Department of Homeland security will be swamped with these waivers and it may take longer than what the processing times was abroad. At the post. Now, all the waivers are going to be centralize in one location, and I think that's going to back log adjudication.

Jose Cardenas: What's the mows vagues for this change?

Delia Salvatierra: The Obama administration saw that it wanted to benefit U.S. citizens. And not penalize them by sending their immediate relatives outside the United States for a long period of of time. There are many children, families who are separated for months at end without a determination. And I think the Obama administration really heard the pleas of U.S. citizens who wanted to reduce that time. Again, this is a procedural change to alleviate family separation. It doesn't undermine or provide automatic approval of a green card by any means.

Jose Cardenas: And as I understand it it could actually expose somebody to expulsion if they don't check with somebody like you, a skilled immigration lawyer, to find out whether there might be other issues.

Delia Salvatierra: Yeah. Just because you have an approved I-601 doesn't sanitize other areas that you may have, that may disqualify you from the immigrant Visa. If you have a prior criminal history or have, you know, admitted to Visa fraud or made a false claim to U.S. citizenship. That person --

Jose Cardenas: Or tried to come across too many times and got caught.

Delia Salvatierra: Yes. And have been apprehended at the border several times. That's going to disqualify the individual. Before embarking, on this process, individuals need to consult with an experienced immigration attorney, not a notario. It's still serious. If the waiver us a approved but the Department of State finds another reason to disqualify them the waivers is automatically revoked.

Jose Cardenas: And you may be kicked off the country.

Delia Salvatierra: Permanently. And so, you know, like I said, doesn't change the law. It only changes the procedure. So you still have to make sure that you are eligible and that you are going to come back.

Jose Cardenas: Delia, is there anything else you want to make sure people know about this new process?

Delia Salvatierra: You only get one shot. If you file the waiver, you are only going to get one opportunity to file the state side waiver. You are not going to get multiple opportunities. It's a one-shot deal. Second, when you submit a waiver the most important aspect of the waiver is to demonstrate the U.S. citizen spouse, children, and family is going to suffer extreme hardship. It's not just an application. It's very much an involved process to demonstrate extreme hardship.

Jose Cardenas: Delia, we thank you once again for joining us to talk about this and all the other appearances you have had to explain some of these complex issues and very appreciative. Thank you very much.

Delia Salvatierra: Thank you for having me.

Maricopa County Supervisor Steve Chucri

  |   Video
  • After a decade with the same five members, there are new faces on the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. District 2 Maricopa County Board of Supervisor Steve Chucri talks about priorities for his district and Maricopa County.
  • Steve Chucri - Maricopa County Supervisor, District 2
Category: Government   |   Keywords: maricopa, county, supervisor,

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Jose Cardenas: I'm José Cardenas. Thank you for joining us. After more than a decade, there is a changing of the guard in Maricopa County. Two new Maricopa County elected leaders took office this week. Long time supervisors Don Stapley and Fulton Brock have finished their terms, and returned to the private sector. Denny Barney will represent the County's district 1 in the Southeast valley, and Steve Chucri will represent east valley in district 2. Joining me is one of those two newcomers, Maricopa County supervisor Steve Chucri. Welcome to "Horizonte" and congratulations on your new position. Give us just a quick thumbnail sketch of your back ground. Then I want to talk a little bit about the campaign and your priorities for your new position.

Steve Chucri: Sure. I’m happy to. Again, thank you for having me tonight. I am actually born and raised right here in the east valley. I went to Catholic grad school growing up and I have got a long family roots in Arizona. My grandfather, Tony Corey who was actually born a year before state hood, and went to Lebanon and then came back as a young teen and started to provide for his family. And so my roots do run deep. Of my grandfather was the first licensed auto dealer in the state of Arizona. And so it's a rarity to see Arizonans that are actually born and raised right here in the valley.

Jose Cardenas: Give us also a thumbnail sketch of your district and the demographics.

Steve Chucri: Sure. It's a big district. It's about 770,000 people that we represent on the County board in each the five districts. Mine goes down and starts in the Gilbert, basically Elliott is the line of demarcation and goes north. Takes in Mesa. It goes all the way on the east side to the Pinal County borders and takes in fountain hills, Phoenix-Arcadia area, the eastern quarter of paradise valley and goes all the way up to Cave Creek and Carefree. It's a very large district but I have got to learn a lot during the campaign about exactly the nuances of each part of those cities and in every respect of that district 2.

Jose Cardenas: And you also learned a lot about politics. I know that you are no stranger to the area because you have worked in Washington and have been involved. But you have never run for election before. What made you think you wanted to do that?

Steve Chucri: You know, it was an opportunity. My day job, if you will, is presidency of the Arizona restaurant association. And when I took over the association about 10 and a half years ago, there was a lot of opportunity to grow. There was opportunity to fix a lot of the things that were broken. And to make it into the great entity it is today. And I saw the same thing with Maricopa County. It's the 4th largest County in the nation. Very few people realize that. And I saw that, I think in many ways, José, we weren't living up to the potential of that County. And the people it serves. And the acrimony, the infighting to me became the antithesis of what good government is about. So that was one of the reasons. The other reason was it seems as though we became, as government, we have become more onerous in, there's been more burdensome regulations placed on the private sector. I saw that getting to a point of beginning to stifle business. That's the last thing we need to be doing right now as this down turn that we witnessed in late 2007, that we are trying to come out of. That's the last thing we want government to do is to weigh down business. We need to prop up business and we need to make sure we can encourage and find incentives to allow businesses to grow and to hire, not create added fees and added regulations that they have to comply with.

Jose Cardenas: Your opponent in the primary was Lester Pierce, Russell Pierce's brother.

Steve Chucri: That's correct.

Jose Cardenas: Was that a factor one way or the other in your decision to run?

Steve Chucri: None whatsoever, actually. Because I challenged Mr. Stapley, no disrespect to Don. It was something that I felt for the reasons I just stated that I need to run. Owe Mr. Pierce wasn't a factor. I entered the race in September of 2011 and Mr. Pierce didn't get in until March of 2012. So it wasn't a fact inner my decision-making. I didn't, in fact, even open up an exploratory committee. I was going to get into this race. I was getting in and jump in feet first and that's exactly what we did as a campaign team and we were fortunately very successful in doing so.

Jose Cardenas: In the course of your campaign, you emphasized your conservative credentials. Even though, of course, Mr. Pierce was emphasizing his even more conservative.

Steve Chucri: Sure.

Jose Cardenas: Since your victory, you have talked about how that will guide and influence your decision-making, your priority setting as a supervisor. In what way?

Steve Chucri: Right. I think in a few different ways. From my business background, I think businesses, for the most part, can be conservative, and I certainly want to, those regulations and other things that I mentioned, I want to use a conservative approach to that. The property tax rate, that is a big deal to every resident in the County. And I want to make sure that we use a conservative approach, a deliberative approach, in making sure that we don't just have a knee-jerk reaction should we not be able to balance our budget, to go and raise the property tax rate just to answer all the questions. Or answer all the problems that we see. So that is how I see the conservative approach, I think addressing, not just your typical conservative issues, but also how it blends in and how it morphs into business issues.

Jose Cardenas: And again, you had talked about during your campaign and even earlier in your interview about ending the acrimony and I assume you are talking about acrimony between the supervisors and other branches of County government. One of the participants is still there, sheriff Arpaio. What do you see coming about in terms of that relationship?

Steve Chucri: I hope I am successful, José, in bringing about that same spirit of cooperation to the County board as bill Montgomery has brought to the County attorney's office. In fact, Bill, I asked Bill to swear me in just a few days ago because of our long-time friendship. But also I think it makes a comment, makes a statement that it is a new day. And Bill has done a marvelous job at leveling the field, at helping break down those barriers that once existed with County attorney's office, with the board of supervisors, with the sheriff's office. And I see myself doing the very same thing in working with the sheriff. In our job, I think is to make sure that the sheriff operates within his budget, that he has the proper tools in his toolbox to carry out his duties, and that's something I fully expect and will do.

Jose Cardenas: Now, we are almost out of time but I did promise we would talk about your priorities. Why don't you outline. We touched on some of them already but what else is it?

Steve Chucri: Fiscal discipline. I won't go into that but that's got to be a priority to make sure we keep our fiscal house in order. And that we don't arbitrarily continue to raise property tax rate on residents of Maricopa County. And secondly, a big issue that I campaigned on and that I am already started doing is working with our municipalities. Working with our mayors and our councils. The issues can become bigger problems. I want to work with these municipalities to make these issues, to resolve them and to not allow them to become serious problems. So that's something I am doing. I am speaking in fountain hills next week to their mayor and council. And work with every city within my district to open up those lines of communication to problems so it's not something that happened very often and it's something that I think can really bring about some positive results and making a positive difference. And then also applies to the state legislature. A lot of folks were ignored during all this time and era of infighting and finger pointing. So as much as we can do with the municipalities, I hope to take to the state legislature and work with them as well.

Jose Cardenas: Supervisor Steve Chucri, thank you for joining us.

Steve Chucri: Thank you for having me. Thank you very much.

Jose Cardenas: Congratulations on your election success.

Steve Chucri: Appreciate it.