On the Issues
Tax revenues follow economic growth, not higher tax rates. Therefore, the quickest way to encourage economic growth is to make our tax code competitive, lessen regulations and make the cost of doing business as low and predictable as possible for our business owners. In Arizona, the majority of our business owners operate small businesses.
Just like households who have had to reduce their budget in tough times, legislative Republicans did what we needed to ensure our revenues aligned with our expenditures and made a major dent in our structural imbalance over the last three years. The size of government grew by $3.7 Billion dollars from fiscal years 2004 to 2009. We cannot allow such a massive growth in government to occur again. Any increase in spending must correspond with growth in ongoing revenues or comparable cuts. Too often state budgets included new, permanent spending that were paid for with one-time revenues leaving the state with a higher structural imbalance and chronic cash deficits.
Since 2009, either through Executive order or statute, Arizona has had a regulatory moratorium in place to stop any unnecessary, increased regulation on businesses with the cost ultimately passed on to consumers. I will do all I can to look proactively for ways to reduce any unnecessary regulatory burdens so businesses can thrive. I successfully reduced regulations in Title 15 (Education statutes) in 2016.
We need to continue to make our tax policy even more business friendly with lessened, predictable regulations, and ensure government provides for core, necessary services that will communicate to businesses that are here and those that seek to move here that we are “open for business.”
If we truly want to boost Arizona’s economy, we must focus on jobs by way of good tax policy that supports economic activity. Revenue growth will follow, as public spending and employment rely on the fruits of private sector activity.
Main Cost Drivers
The three largest budgetary units comprise approximately 90 percent of our entire state budget. They are: Healthcare, Public Safety and Education (K-12 and Higher Education). It is critical we live within our means; otherwise one or possibly all three of these budgetary units will feel the most impact when we must balance the state budget every year that is constitutionally mandated.
We have an obligation to lead from the front, which means: we have a competitive, business friendly environment; we have low, predictable regulations; and government merely provides for the core, necessary services and otherwise gets out of the way thus allowing businesses to flourish.
I wholeheartedly believe in school choice whether it is public or private. Each student’s needs and interests are unique. Parents deserve the right to choose the best education for their children that helps the student to thrive academically.
Education is critical to each child’s future success in life and quite often it is the student that gets left behind in the public/private school debate. Let’s not put politics and the pressure of education groups/teachers’ unions ahead of children
There is no greater predictor of student achievement and success than the quality of instruction and parental involvement. Although there is little (if anything) we can do to get parents engaged in their child’s education, we must do all we can to hire and retain the best and the brightest teachers. With the focus on the new education standards, I think we need to focus primarily on quality teachers.
I am a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment and have consistently earned an “A” rating from the NRA.