Ducey Vows To Veto All Bills Until Arizona Lawmakers Pass A Budget

By Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
Published: Friday, May 28, 2021 - 4:03pm
Updated: Friday, May 28, 2021 - 5:54pm

Upset with what he sees as lack of progress, Gov. Doug Ducey vowed Friday to veto any other legislation that reaches his desk until he gets a budget.

And he's making that retroactive, killing 22 measures that already were awaiting his action before the ultimatum.

"This weekend marks one month until the end of the fiscal year, and Arizonans are counting on us to work together and pass a budget that provides certainty to taxpayers and citizens," the governor said in a prepared statement announcing his decision.

Less clear is what has to be in the spending and tax-cut plan to get Ducey to relent. Press aide C.J. Karamargin told Capitol Media Services that the governor's threat is not tied to his specific $12.8 billion spending plan and $1.9 billion in permanent tax cuts. But Ducey, in his statement, suggested that's pretty much what he wants.

"On the table is a budget agreement that makes responsible and significant investments in K-12 education, higher education, infrastructure and local communities, all while delivering historic tax relief to working families and small businesses," he wrote. And Ducey, in his letter to Senate President Karen Fann and House Speaker Rusty Bowers, said he looks forward to partnering with them "to focus on what matters and pass a budget."

The move, while unusual, is not without precedent.

In 2013, Jan Brewer announced, also in May, she would not sign any measures until there was resolution of a new state budget. And in that case, the then-governor also wanted it to include her plan to expand Medicaid. Lawmakers were not happy then, with Andy Biggs, then the Senate president, calling it "extortion or blackmail"

Bills That Ducey vetoed Friday Because He Does Not Yet Have A Budget:

SB 1022 —Renames references in law from "product of human conception" to "unborn child."

SB 1030 — Makes various changes to the practices and procedures of the Psychiatric Security Review Board which has jurisdiction of people found "guilty except insane."

SB 1074 — Bans requiring public employees to have to participate in "critical race theory" training.

SB 1119 — Requires the attorney general to review the constitutionality of any executive orders by the president.

SB 1121 — Imposes new requirements for the the security, packaging and labeling of marijuana.

SB 1127 — Allows motorists to travel faster on some state highways without facing criminal charges.

SB 1135 — Increases the deduction available on individual income taxes for putting money into 529 college savings programs.

SB 1176 — Creates a "produce incentive program" to encourage purchase of Arizona-grown crops by people using food stamps.

SB 1215 — Exempts some liquor sales from certain labeling requirements.

SB 1408 — Mandates research on the correlation between marijuana use and mental illness.

SB 1514 — Requires the Department of Housing to provide emergency shelter beds in western Maricopa County for homeless seniors who are at least 55 years old.

SB 1526 — Allows a prisoner to receive a certificate after successfully completing a training program to work in a field or trade and ensures female prisoners get feminine hygiene products without being charged.

SB 1635 — Makes numerous technical corrections to laws already enacted.

SB 1716 — Establishes the Joint Legislative Psychiatric Hospital Review Council and requires a surveillance system at the Arizona State Hospital.

HB 2001 — Creates a retroactive income tax credit for part of the value of land donated for a site for a traditional public or charter school.

HB 2070 — Provides for the release of original birth certificates that were sealed due to an adoption.

HB 2296 — Requires the Department of Transportation to suspend rather than revoke someone's driving privileges after a second conviction of reckless driving, aggressive driving or racing.

HB 2303 — Mandates the health department to conduct proficiency testing of independent laboratories that test marijuana.

HB 2414 — Authorizes the health department to inspect any medical marijuana dispensary during normal business hours.

HB 2554 — Requires that those chosen by parties to represent them at polling places be registered to vote in Arizona.

HB 2674 — Permits some people who were convicted of sex offenses to eliminate the need for them to register.

HB 2792 — Prohibits the delivery of early ballots to anyone who has not specifically requested one.

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