Arizona taxpayers are questioning why an Oregon-based organization, Stand for Children LLC, is being accused of pouring money into an Arizona ballot measure that would raise taxes on already struggling small business owners. According to a new report, Stand for Children was a beneficiary of the CARES Act PPP program.
The PPP program was intended to assist small businesses trying to survive the shut down caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While Stand for Children “has been the beneficiary of between $1 million and $2 million in PPP loans from the government,” according to the Western Journal, “an advocacy group that exists under the same umbrella as the Stand for Children Leadership Center — has contributed at least $3,353,463.08 to Invest in Ed, according to a second-quarter campaign finance report.”
Prop 208, the largest tax hike in AZ history, is being bankrolled by Oregon-based Stand For Children. They pumped $4 Million into the effort, accounting for 90% of their total funding. It was a staggering sum, and it turns out that they used taxpayer money to make it happen.
— Free Enterprise Club (@azfec) September 29, 2020
The Free Enterprise Club, a group of small business interests, is calling for an apology from the organization and an investigation.
“We call upon our congressional delegation to act against this abuse and investigate their PPP application. Stand for Children knew that they intended to fund Prop 208 during their application process and should be required to pay back EVERY DIME they received, plus interest and penalties,” the Club advised members in an email. “And if there was any justice, Stand for Children should be forced to apologize to Arizona voters, taxpayers, and small business owners for using their tax dollars to put this radical measure on the ballot.”
Just last week, U.S. Chamber Executive Vice President and Chief Policy Officer Neil Bradley joined the vocal opposition to Proposition 208.
“Just as businesses across Arizona begin to focus on recovery and rebuilding from the pandemic, Proposition 208 would impose a staggering 77.7% tax increase on small and family-owned businesses. If passed, Arizona would have one of the highest small business tax rates in the nation, destroying jobs and discouraging new start-ups,” according to Bradley. “Arizona is an important contributor to America’s overall economic growth. Passage of Proposition 208 would be bad for small businesses, Arizona, and the American economy. The U.S. Chamber is pleased to lend its voice to the opposition of this misguided and potentially economically devastating proposition.”
Okay, Sean. Thanks.
After much heartfelt thought and consideration, my family and I decided to move to Arizona.
We know we made the right choice. We LOVE AZ.#NoOnProp208#DontCaliforniaYourArizona https://t.co/BpagBavY5O
— Rob Schneider (@RobSchneider) September 24, 2020
Vote No! On 208 . It will destroy small business. https://t.co/TJ1AbFMk2w
— Ally Miller (@Ally4Supervisor) September 30, 2020
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article was updated on October 9, 2020.