The budget process is moving
rapidly, which means the Legislature may vote on the state budget at any time
in the coming weeks. Your involvement in this process is vital to ensuring that
your priorities for a better Arizona are being included. House Democrats want
to guarantee that your voice is heard.
Here is how you can engage in the legislative process in person, from
home, or through the web!
Sign Up on the Request to Speak (RTS) System
RTS is the system through which the public
is able to sign in to speak on bills and record their support or opposition on bills.
You are also able to track and comment on bills through the legislative
process. To submit your form to create an account click here.
Find and contact your legislators:
If you know your legislators, click here If you do not know your
MEDIA ADVISORY: Faith Leaders and
Community Groups Call for Change to House Prayer Rules
WHO: Humanist Society of Greater
Phoenix, Secular Coalition for Arizona, State Rep Athena Salman, along with
leaders from Arizona’s interfaith and secular communities
WHAT: Standing for our First
Freedom: Interfaith Solidarity Event
Interfaith and secular leaders will
read together the humanist prayer delivered by Rep. Salman in the state
House. A press conference will follow.
WHY: On April 18th, 2017, State
Representative Athena Salman offered a humanist invocation written by a member
of her community, the Humanist Society of Greater Phoenix. Republican House
leadership then ruled that, despite Salman’s assertion that her higher power is
“the goodness in humanity,” Salman broke house rules by not praying to a higher
power. We believe that it is dangerous to allow the government to dictate
how we pray, and we are calling on House leadership to change the rules.
WHERE: Bill of Rights Monument,
Wesley Bolin Memorial Plaza 1700 W Washington St, Phoenix, Arizona 85007
WHEN: Thursday, April 20th, 9AM to
The Humanist Society of Greater
Phoenix is a warm and welcoming community of humanists, atheists,
agnostics, freethinkers, and nontheists of all types. HSGP aims to enrich the
lives of any who join us through explorations in science, philosophy, history,
and the arts.
Arizona Democrats have been travelling around the state hosting budget town halls because we want to make sure Arizonans have a chance to #BeHeard. We've collected more than 100 comments from people across the state. Education was clearly on the top of the list of priorities for most, as was tax and private prison reform.
Here are some of the comments from folks who came to the town halls and wanted to #BeHeard: Your Budget Priorities: Lee Stanfield 1. Equalizing the money funding all public schools, including tax credit money and property tax money. All Schools must be funded equitably! Reform the formula. 2. Referendum on getting rid of vouchers. 3. Raising teachers' pay. 4. More transparency in government…not less (as Ducey wants) Your Budget Priorities: Melinda Merkel Iyer 1. New sources of revenue. Stop giving away the store to corporations and hacking our budget to the bone. We've seen in Kansas and right here at home how disastrous that is. Reevaluate and remove corporate tax cuts and make them pay their share. Eliminate the automatic 2 percent yearly (Student Tuition Increase): why give my tax dollars to wealthy families to give to private schools when my neighborhood teacher has to purchase her own supplies. WE NEED MORE FUNDING. 2. Answer the market on teacher salaries. Teachers don't need trainings or incentives to get them to stop leaving the state and the profession. They need to be paid what the market demands. 3. End the private, for-profit prison scheme. With more funding we can do what our state so desperately needs: fund education, health care, infrastructure and growth for the future. Your Budget Priorities: Kristin Clark Return funding to schools. Ensure public health is a priority. Tax corporations and end unnecessary tax breaks for companies who need no incentive to build/locate here. Increase revenues, increase quality of life, increase view of Arizona. Your Budget Priorities: Alicia Klassen K-12 education, university funding, rolling back or delaying tax cuts to generate more revenue, (protect) city services, no sweeping of HURF funds, no money for private prisons. NOT a fan of Ducey's achievement district. That money should be in public schools – roll back school tax credits. No ESAs (vouchers).
If you didn't have a chance to attend a town hall near you, a video of the Flagstaff Town Hall is available by clicking here. Democrats will continue to fight for your priorities at the Capitol. Our vision for Arizona is inclusive, prosperous and fiscally responsible. We remain committed to investing in policies that will improve our quality of life now, while promoting a stronger, more sustainable future. We will keep working for a better Arizona. The Legislature will soon vote on a budget for the state, and we need your voice at the Capitol. Click here to find more ways to #BeHeard.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 13, 2017 Contact: C. Murphy Hebert 602-926-5848 firstname.lastname@example.org STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Rep. Jesus Rubalcava, D-Gila Bend (District 4), recently published an inappropriate Facebook post regarding a member of the Senate. Today, he offered this apology: "The comment I made on Facebook regarding Sen. Debbie Lesko was unacceptable. I deeply regret my poor judgement. I apologize to Sen. Lesko and to all my colleagues in both the state House and Senate. I also apologize to my constituents and assure them I have learned from this mistake." House Minority Whip Charlene Fernandez, D-Yuma (District 4), responded to both Rubalcava's post and apology: "Comments about violence cannot be tolerated. We all take this matter very seriously. Rep. Rubalcava recognized his offensive mistake and is taking responsibility. Apologizing was the right thing to do."
Republicans passed a sweeping school voucher expansion, Arizonans have kept coming to the Capitol to share their stories. The common
theme – vouchers are going to create more problems for our kids' public schools
at a time when resources are already too scare.
Please take a moment and watch these videos and share these stories: #ClassroomCrisis #Beheard
During this legislative
session there has been a barrage of attacks on the citizen initiative process.
Republicans' unyielding efforts to limit the voice of the people are alarming. A
piece in the Arizona Republic has
dubbed this onslaught "Operation
Silence our Citizens."
The bills now in the Legislature
are an affront to will of the people; they look like an attempt to wrestle
power from Arizonans – maybe as retribution for using the initiative process to
increase the minimum wage?
The initiative process is
about accountability. It is supposed to ensure Arizonans can take action if the
Legislature is not being responsive, or if it passes onerous laws. This process
is a guaranteed constitutional right. A recent Public Policy Polling survey
reported that an overwhelming majority of Arizona voters support the citizen
initiative process, regardless of party affiliation.
Republicans voted to expand the Arizona school voucher scheme, which shifts public dollars away from public schools and toward private schools. Following reports of little oversight of the voucher program and more than $100,000 of misspent public money, a new analysis confirms that vouchers aren't really helping the students they were purportedly designed to help.
Republicans claim that vouchers provide resources for students from financially disadvantaged families to attend better schools. The truth is more than 75 percent of money that is being drained from public school districts with "A" or "B" ratings, according to a new report. And many of the people using the vouchers live in rich neighborhoods.
House Democratic Leader Rebecca Rios, D-Phoenix (District 27), outlines next steps after Republicans passed "shameful" voucher expansion bill.
Gov Ducey sent a one-line veto statement to Rep. Clark for HB2321, a bill that the AZ House and Senate passed unanimously. It would have protected property owners who are in HOAs. Rep. Clark is now calling for the Legislature to override the governor's veto.
continues to plague the Republican school voucher scheme, which shifts public
dollars away from public schools and toward private schools. Following
reports of little oversight of the voucher program and more than $100,000
of misspent public money, a new analysis confirms that vouchers aren't really
helping the students they were purportedly designed to help.
claim that vouchers provide resources for students from financially
disadvantaged families to attend better schools. The truth is more than 75
percent of money is being drained from public school districts with
"A" or "B" ratings, according
to a new report. And many of the people using the vouchers live in
Arizona columnist recently
wrote: "Reality tells us that the program is helping suburban kids get
out of high performing schools – giving them public money to help pay the
tuition bill for private school. Poor kids aren't using the scholarships."
has been recognized nationally as a model of what
not to do with private school vouchers. Most Arizona students attend
public schools, so expanding the voucher scheme has the potential to leave
their schools even more strapped for cash.
House Democrats, supporting public education is nonnegotiable. We are standing
with and for the majority
of Arizonans who say our kids' schools deserve more. We agree that our
kids, our teachers and our classrooms deserve to be prioritized before tax
giveaways. We will keep fighting against legislation that would allow
vouchers to balloon further, while we push for more resources for public