Arizona Legislature Passes Housing Affordability Bill

Arizona Legislature Passes Housing Affordability Bill

By Daniel Stefanski |

Arizona legislators continue to work on solutions to help their constituents afford and own their own homes.

On Wednesday, the Arizona State Senate passed HB 2570, the Arizona Starter Homes Act, with a bipartisan vote. The bill, which was sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Sonny Borrelli and House Majority Leader Leo Biasiucci, “creates municipal prohibitions relating to home designs and single-family home lot sizes” – according to the overview provided by the chamber.

“Hardworking Arizonans are finding it increasingly difficult to purchase their first home and begin their pursuit of the American dream. This legislation is a step in the right direction in bringing prices down by eliminating some of the restrictive government red tape and expensive regulatory constraints being passed onto homebuyers,” said Senator Borrelli. “Government should do everything in its power to make the lives of our citizens better, but local municipalities are overstepping their authority by trying to control private property rights, instead of focusing their attention on valid rules and regulations protecting against nuisance and safety issues. The Arizona Starter Homes Act is a no-brainer, and I’m encouraged it received bipartisan support. I look forward to the Governor taking appropriate action on behalf of our citizens’ lives and livelihoods by signing this bill into law.”

The bill passed the Senate with a 16-13 vote. One member did not vote.

Last month, the Arizona House of Representatives approved the proposal with a 33-26 vote (with one vacant seat).

Senator Anna Hernandez, a Democrat, applauded the passage of the legislation from her chamber, writing that the result “is amazing for all Arizonans!”

Earlier this week, Democrat State Representative Analise Ortiz stated that this bill “provides the best opportunity for the American dream of homeownership.” She added that “we don’t have to be ‘forever renters,’” and that “our generation deserves to own a home & build generational wealth.”

While the support in the legislature for this piece of legislation is bipartisan, towns and cities around the state have indicted strong opposition to its proposed policies. On the Arizona Legislature’s Request to Speak system, representatives from the cities of Prescott, Scottsdale, Avondale, Goodyear, Sedona, Flagstaff, Eloy, Mesa, Buckeye, Chandler, Litchfield Park, Glendale, Tucson, and Yuma; as well as from the League of Arizona Cities & Towns, Chandler Chamber of Commerce, and Queen Creek Chamber of Commerce, signed in to oppose the bill. Representatives from the Arizona Neighborhood Project, Republican Liberty Caucus of Arizona, Home Builders Association of Central Arizona, and the Arizona Homeowners Coalition indicated their support for the legislation.

HB 2570 now heads to Governor Katie Hobbs’ desk for a decision on its fate.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

Senate Passes Legislation To Prevent Private, Outside Funding Of Government Election Operations

Senate Passes Legislation To Prevent Private, Outside Funding Of Government Election Operations

By B. Hamilton |

PHOENIX – On Wednesday, the Arizona State Senate passed HB 2569, legislation targeting the Big Tech companies that targeted swing states during the 2020 election cycle. The bill sponsored by Rep. Jake Hoffman prohibits government entities from receiving private monies to conduct elections.

The vote fell along party lines, with Republicans supporting the bill and all Democrats voting against it.

“Nearly half a billion dollars in private funding was spent by out of state Democrat billionaires to influence the administration of county and state elections operations nationally, including millions here in Arizona,” said Hoffman referring to entities like the Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL), which spent in the neighborhood of $1.4 million to influence the election in 2018 and over $350 million in 2020.

Critics note that CTCL received millions from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife to change the way local elections offices conducted the election. According to the Capital Research Center, CTCL spent $5 million in Arizona, $3 million of which went to Maricopa County, which election integrity supporters say essentially decided the state’s election.

“The Arizona legislature doesn’t want billionaires from any Party, or of any kind, attempting to influence our election system,” said Hoffman.

Hoffman argues that his bill is “common sense legislation that will ensure Arizona’s elections are free from outside influence and that our voters can have confidence in the integrity of the process. The passage of this bill is a win for Arizona and a win for America, as I fully expect other states to follow suit in prohibiting this deeply troubling new Democrat tactic.”

“Even the appearance of impropriety in elections is dangerous,” said Arizona Free Enterprise Club President Scot Mussi. “Elections should be funded, directed, and guided by state governments, not private organizations and especially not Big Tech. The Club commends the Senate for passing HB2569 and urges Governor Ducey to sign this important bill to protect the integrity of our elections.”

“Arizonans have the right to know their elections are being run without outside influence, and Gov. Ducey should promptly sign the bill into law,” said Jessica Anderson, Executive Director of Heritage Action.

The House of Representatives previously approved HB 2569 on March 3. It will now be sent to Governor Ducey for his signature.

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Should A Billionaire Run Arizona’s Elections?

The near-universal effect of CTCL’s grants was disproportionately greater turnout for one political party. Here’s how it broke down in Arizona, comparing the votes for president in 2020 versus 2016. All 15 counties increased their votes for both parties, but not at all equally. And both parties saw their votes increase even more in the nine counties CTCL funded than the six counties it did not. Here especially the results were unequal.

For the Republicans, the funded counties’ votes increased by 46% more than the rate at which unfunded counties increased. For Democrats, funded counties’ votes skyrocketed upwards 81% more quickly than they rose in unfunded counties.

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