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Arizona Senate Passes Budget Governor Threatens to Veto

April 02
23:58 2014

On Tuesday, the Arizona Senate passed a budget that Governor Brewer threatens to veto as it stands.

Arizona CapitolThe Senate’s budget cut $28 million in proposed spending from the $9.2 billion version passed earlier by the House. The House now refuses to support the changes. Governor Brewer wants several issues resolved before the budget hits her desk.

According to the governor’s spokesman, Andrew Wilder, Brewer wants more money than the Senate budgeted for state universities. She is not satisfied with a Senate proposal to give district-run charter schools only half the amount approved by the House. The governor is not willing to accept that the Legislature will only consider additional funds for child abuse caseworkers and investigators after the creation of the new Department of Child Welfare and Family Services. Brewer wants to make sure the new agency has the money it needs when it starts up.

The budget is the state’s immediate priority. The governor doesn’t want other bills coming to her desk before that is accomplished. Legislation may be viewed unfavorably if it makes it to her desk.”–Andrew Wilder

Governor Brewer, a Republican, shares some concerns with Senate Democrats. Democrats opposed the budget, saying it doesn’t do enough for children, families and crumbling roads.

The Senate budget passed today, April Fool’s Day, is sadly not a joke and does not move Arizona forward. It fails to address the needs of Arizona families, our kids’ schools, our state’s crumbling roads and it leaves our most vulnerable children with nothing but an empty promise.

“We began this session knowing that child welfare was the top priority, but the best this Republican budget can do is state an intent to revisit the issue later. That won’t help the children currently living in unsafe environments.

“This budget also ignores funding for the preventative services that keep families together and children out of harm’s way. This penny-wise and pound-foolish philosophy sets us up to spend far more when these kids end up in the CPS system.

“A critical part of moving Arizona forward is ensuring our children are prepared to succeed in the 21st century economy. With cuts to district charter schools and lack of investment in higher education priorities, however, our public schools and universities are once again being left behind by this Legislature.”–Senate Democratic Leader Anna Tovar, District 19

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