Company with out-of-state prison contracts fights to defeat Prop. 205

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(Source: KPHO/KTVK) (Source: KPHO/KTVK)
MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

A Scottsdale-base company that contracts with out-of-state prisons is now trying to defeat the legalization of marijuana in Arizona. 

Services Group of America, a food distribution company, donated $80,000 last month to Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy, the campaign trying take down Proposition 205. 

J.P. Holyoak, the chairman of the pro-pot campaign, accused the firm of doing this to protect its bottom line. 

"The idea that we have prison companies contributing to anti-marijuana campaigns in an effort to keep marijuana possession a felony in this state is obscene," he said Thursday . 

A spokesman for Services Group of America issued a statement that stressed it has no contracts with Arizona prisons and mainly distributes food to restaurants throughout the state. 

Brad Parker, vice president of corporate communications, said a small part of their business deals with prisons in the Northwest and upper-Midwest states. 

"Slade Stewart, owner of Services Group of America, says the proposition is a bad idea for the safety of our children and our associates, a bad idea for our neighborhoods, and a bad idea for Arizona," Parker said in a statement. 

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Dennis WlechVeteran political reporter Dennis Welch is a well-respected political expert in Arizona.

Dennis Welch
Political Editor

Before making the move to television, Welch wrote and edited for the Arizona Guardian, a highly influential online news site dedicated to Arizona politics and government where he served as owner and editor. During his Guardian days, Welch was a frequent guest on “Politics Unplugged” and has been a regular fixture on the state political landscape since 2005 appearing on numerous radio and television talk shows. “I am thrilled to start working with such a talented and dedicated staff of journalists,” said Welch. “This is a great opportunity to broaden the reach of my political coverage and tell stories that affect Arizona voters and their families.” With more than 13 years of experience under his belt, Welch’s arrival only strengthens 3TV’s commitment to providing first-rate political and government coverage across all platforms. When not covering politics, Welch is an avid runner and fronts a punk rock band that plays frequently throughout the Southwest and California. Welch is a well-respected political expert in Arizona and his addition means 3TV will provide a stronger, more robust political presence in Arizona. He joins 3TV from the Arizona Guardian, a highly influential online news site dedicated to Arizona politics and government where he served as owner and editor. During his Guardian days, Welch was a frequent guest on “Politics Unplugged” and has been a regular fixture on the state political landscape since 2005 appearing on numerous radio and television talk shows. “I am thrilled to start working with such a talented and dedicated staff of journalists,” said Welch. “This is a great opportunity to broaden the reach of my political coverage and tell stories that affect Arizona voters and their families.” With more than 13 years of experience under his belt, Welch’s arrival only strengthens 3TV’s commitment to providing first-rate political and government coverage across all platforms. When not covering politics, Welch is an avid runner and fronts a punk rock band that plays frequently throughout the Southwest and California.

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