State Capitol News
Tue August 18, 2009
Legislators give final approval repealing state property tax
By Howard Fischer
Phoenix, AZ – The vote by the House ratifies the action taken last week by the Senate in declaring that the tax, which hasn't been levied in three years, should go away permanently. Only Republicans supported the measure on the grounds that allowing the tax to return as it is set to this year would take $250 million out of the economy. But Democrat David Schapira saw the issue in a different light.
(What in the world are we doing? Why are we voting on this bill
right now? Why in the midst of a budget crisis where we have a
deficit of over $3 billion are we voting on a bill that's going
to increase that number. It just doesn't even make sense to me
that this is what we're doing right now.)
While Democrats lack the votes to block the move to do away with
the tax, the move still needs to clear another hurdle. Gov. Jan
Brewer had agreed to the repeal -- but only if lawmakers agreed
to ask voters for a temporary hike in the state sales tax to help
balance the budget. But that measure is hung up in the Senate.
And gubernatorial press aide Paul Senseman said that, at this
point, his boss sees no reason to back down. For Arizona Public
Radio this is Howard Fischer.