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Weekend wrap-up: Here are the biggest Arizona stories from March 5-7

PHOENIX — Capacity limitations on restricted businesses are being lifted, Arizona’s largest marijuana dispensary is looking to hire dozens across its retail locations in the Valley and vehicle registration can now be renewed at any Walmart location in Arizona.

Here are some of the biggest stories that headlined the Arizona news cycle over the weekend.

Ducey lifts capacity limits on Arizona businesses, including restaurants

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey said Friday that capacity limitations on restricted businesses, including restaurants, are being lifted because of improving COVID-19 metrics and strides in vaccine distribution.

However, mitigation protocols such as physical distancing and mask wearing remain in place, per a new executive order.

“Like the rest of the country, Arizona has made its way out of the winter surge of cases,” Ducey said in a press release. “And we are leading the nation in the vaccination roll out. Our mitigation strategies have been targeted and data driven.

“Today’s announcement is a measured approach; we are not in the clear yet. We need to continue practicing personal responsibility. Wear a mask. Social distance. Stay home when you’re sick and wash your hands frequently.”

Arizona’s largest marijuana dispensary hiring dozens of employees

The operators of Arizona’s largest marijuana dispensary are looking to ramp up the company’s workforce in the coming weeks.

The Mint dispensary announced in a press release that they plan on hiring dozens of employees across its retail locations in Tempe, Mesa, and a third location under construction in north Phoenix.

The dispensary was the first in the nation to build a cannabis kitchen and sell cannabis-infused food and drinks at its locations.

Positions range from retail managers to patient service representatives, accountants, graphic designers, pastry chefs, front-end cooks and trimmers, the release said.

Arizona drivers can now renew registration at Walmart stores

The next trip to your neighborhood Walmart location could land you a new vehicle registration.

That’s because the box store chain has partnered with the Arizona Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Division to dispense motor vehicle registration at their stores.

The collaboration was previously announced by ADOT, with Arizona residents having the option of paying for their updated registration with cash or debit at any of Walmart’s locations in the Grand Canyon State.

Customers can purchase their registration at the Walmart money center, the release said, with their information instantly updated in the MVD system upon payment.

Arizona AG’s Office reaches $1.75M settlement with warranty company

The Arizona Attorney General’s Office has reached a $1.75 million settlement with a home warranty service for misrepresenting its “expedited services” policy.

The settlement, which was announced in an AGO press release, said that Landmark Home Warranty told its customers they would resolve air conditioner repairs in an expedited manner during “extreme temperatures.”

The issue, according to the AGO’s release, is the home warranty company defined “extreme temperatures” in a way that was impossible to reach.

“When home warranty companies make promises to consumers, they better deliver, especially when it comes to air conditioning repairs during the Arizona summer,” Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in the release. “Our office will continue to pursue companies who engage in these types of practices.”

As part of the settlement, up to 26,000 customers in the state that used Landmark will receive a total of $1 million in restitution, the release said.

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema chain files for bankruptcy, looks to sell

Texas-based movie chain Alamo Drafthouse Cinema has followed the Phoenix-area theaters in filing for bankruptcy, citing the coronavirus pandemic for its financial trouble.

The dine-in theater group announced the decision Wednesday and added operations will go on while it tries to attract a buyer.

Paschich Alamo Holdings LLC, owner of the Valley theaters in Chandler, Gilbert and Tempe, had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in May 2020, just as Arizona’s stay-at-home order expired.

The local theaters reopened at the end of August 2020 with coronavirus protocols in place.

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