AZ Legislature Week In Review – Week Ending May 19, 2023

az capitol

Wow, what a week. On Monday our legislature condensed one week’s activity into one day. On that day, 126 bills were scheduled for action, most of which are bills we are tracking because they are important and controversial. The result was that 95 bills were acted upon. Most of these passed along party lines, which is typical for controversial bills. Some are headed for the opposite chamber for further action, but most are headed for Hobbs, who is expected to veto most of them, in typical Hobbs’ fashion.

For a list of bills that have been sent to the governor, click HERE

To see what bills have been vetoed, click HERE

If Monday’s activity did not set a record, it must have come close to it.

However, not all was well at the Republican caucus. Among the bills we are tracking, eight were killed when one Republican joined all Democrats and voted NO. That one Republican is David Cook, representative from district 7. These are the bills Cook killed:

SB1140 – (NOW: elections; voting centers; polling places)
SB1141 – early ballot drop off; identification
SB1142 – voter registration events; posting
SB1143 – voting registrations; ballot requests; source
SB1144 – (NOW: central bank digital currency; prohibition)
SB1323 – schools; sexually explicit materials; classification
SB1694 – public monies; ideology training; prohibition
SB1314 – transportation system performance; ADOT

It is quite common for the legislature to adjourn sine die as soon as the budget is done. Not so this session. Instead of adjourning, the leadership chose to recess until June 12. There are two possible reasons for this action.

  • To address the very important issue of extending Prop 400.
  • To be available in case action is needed in connection with the ongoing invasion.
  • The Prop 400 issue is very simple, but very difficult to resolve. It has to do with how we spend the Maricopa County sales tax surcharge for transportation.

    The Maricopa Association of Government and the Democrats want to spend most of the funds created on public transportation, which used by a miniscule portion of commuters.

    The Republican majority in the legislature want to allocate funds in a more equitable fashion, where it benefits the vast majority of commuters.

    Hopefully, some sort of agreement may be hammered out between now and when the legislature returns from break on June 12.

    If the legislature is not in session and needs to be reconvened, it must be done by the governor or by a 2/3 majority of members. Neither one is likely to happen if an emergency comes up as a result of the reprehensible border policy instituted by Biden and supported by Hobbs.

    It will be interesting to see what develops in the weeks ahead.