DEFUND THE FIREFIGHTERS
This year’s Arizona State Legislature have accomplished what we thought was impossible. Republicans and Democrats have worked together to get legislation that will impact every Arizonan! This legislation will effectively DEFUND THE FIREFIGHTERS!
They aren’t doing it in plain sight, they are doing it in a way they hope you won’t notice…but I hope you do, because it will further negatively impact an already dire situation. A short explanation is below, but don’t take our word for it, contact and ask your Arizona State Representative and your Governor to ask if this is true. If you do not know who represents you, find out by clicking here
You may remember the campaign promise by Kari Lake to “eliminate the rental tax”. You may also remember the current governor; Katie Hobbs campaign promise to veto any bill that eliminated the rental tax. Well, we are all about to lose while our elected officials play politics on the issue to make sure that they are not politically damaged.
*For the record, the State does not collect a rental tax. They are banning the ability for municipalities to collect one so it actually doesn’t affect the state budget (pretty easy to cut other people’s money). This type of big government overreach is the same thing most Republicans are outraged about coming from the Federal Government trying to control what individual State Governors do in their state. Hypothetically, if you agree with “President Biden should not control how the State of Arizona collects and spends its money” how could you agree with “the State Legislature and Governor should control how the cities collect and spend their money”?
As a Democrat you may be upset about the same thing above, but are you getting exhausted with the “there’s nothing I can do, it’s the Republicans fault” excuse yet? (Make no mistake if the roles were reversed the Republicans would be making the same statements) Our government has always had majorities, but have elected officials ever been less effective in working together and casting blame without taking responsibility while issues continue to go unsolved? Also, wasn’t the governor supposed to be the guardian of the rental tax elimination being passed? Where is she?
Putting political party aside, lets discuss how eliminating the rental tax even being discussed is PURELY POLITICAL and not actually helpful to anyone except for the politicians trying to further their career…while everyone else loses and will literally DEFUND THE FIREFIGHTERS.
Again, to be clear, the State does not collect rental tax. They are taking away the ability for your city to collect it, not the state budget they are actually responsible for.
Rental tax is paid by the landlords to the city that a property is in. This either exists or does not exist in the city you live in. What is being proposed at the state right now IS NOT A NEW TAX it is banning a tax already in place. However, rental tax is something that your city depends on if they do have one. If your city does not have a rental tax they likely have a different tax or a higher rate for another income source to make up for not having a rental tax (i.e. Food Tax, higher property tax, etc).
This is not a rant on necessity of taxes. It is also not intended to convince anyone who sees cutting taxes as a good thing that they should reconsider that stance. It’s simply an explanation of how these numbers will DEFUND YOUR FIRE DEPARTMENT that very likely is already behind in funding and has excessive response times because hiring and resources has not kept up with the population explosion that has occurred in Arizona, specifically the Phoenix metropolitan area. Do not take our word for it, contact your representative and ask them where this information is false or misleading.
“Eliminating a tax with inflation and cost of living being so high is a good thing isn’t?”
The simple answer is yes. The full answer with rental tax is not as simple and depends on where you exist in the conversation…
If you are a RENTER: It is likely, based on averages, your landlord is paying about $20/month for rental tax to the city you live in. It is likely your landlord does not charge you for this expense and unlikely (unless it is itemized in your rental contract) that your landlord will be giving this monthly expense back to you.
If you are LANDLORD: You’ve likely already factored in the expense. Is that minimal savings worth the likely services cut in the bigger picture? Public Safety in the area your property is located is likely a huge driver of long-term value in your property. If Police and Fire coverage is reduced in your area will the market be affected?
If you are HOMEOWNER: but not a renter or landlord: Your city will either need to make cuts or find a new revenue stream to compensate. You will very likely be affected by a new tax to compensate for loss of rental tax elimination if it goes through.
If you are a CITY: For a city that collects rental tax this is a massive hit to your budget. For example, for the City of Phoenix this will be a $90,000,000 hit to the annual budget. Police and Fire are the two biggest expenses to that annual budget. There is no way for this not to effectively DEFUND THE FIREFIGHTERS (and the Police). This would all be at a time when Fire Departments are trying to expand to serve the huge growth we’ve experienced. It cannot be stressed enough that the rental tax only supports current Fire Department services and will put Fire Departments even further behind on funding as they try to grow.
If you are an ELECTED POLITICIAN: You Win! Some of you will tell the voters you saved them money, but did you? Some of you will say there was nothing you could and this is the “rich getting richer”, but is this monthly savings making anyone rich? All of you will campaign on your place on this issue in your next election, but will any of you include that you DEFUNDED THE FIREFIGHTERS?
If you have questions and concerns about this contact your representative and your Governor and express those concerns. The decision will be made soon! Click here for information on how to contact these people.