Category Archives: Governor

David Garcia to announce run for governor?

Dr. David Garcia

Brahm Resnik of 12 News in Phoenix reports that Democrat David Garcia, an education professor who lost to political novice Diane Douglas in the 2014 race for school superintendent, is expected to announce next week that he’s running for governor in 2018. Democrat David Garcia to announce run for Arizona governor:

For the last several months, Garcia had been weighing whether to run again for superintendent, jump into the campaign for governor or just sit on the sidelines.

Thursday’s passage of a sweeping expansion of Arizona’s school-voucher program appeared to give Garcia the issue he needed to propel a campaign for governor.

He posted this tweet Friday hinting at his plans:

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Garcia would be the first Democrat to formally enter the race. State Sen. Steve Farley of Tucson has said he is exploring a run.

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The ‘Kochtopus’ Goldwater Institute is plotting to lift the caps in the new ‘vouchers for all’ law

The evil GOP bastards at the”Kochtopus” Death Star, the Goldwater Institute, are already plotting the next step in their 50 year strategy to fully privatize public education in Arizona (in violation of the Arizona Constitution). Howard Fischer reports, Lift on voucher cap in the works:

A key architect of the universal voucher plan approved Thursday is already looking to undermine the key provision of the compromise that secured the votes for the program’s expansion.

In a message to financial supporters late Thursday, Darcy Olsen, chief executive officer of the Goldwater Institute, said those who want to give more state money so parents can send their children to private and parochial schools should not be dismayed about the cap of about 30,000 that is in the final version of the bill.

We will get it lifted,” Olsen said.

And Olsen didn’t even wait until Gov. Doug Ducey had penned his approval hours later to the delicately crafted deal, a deal in which the Goldwater Institute participated — and the deal that managed to bring on the bare minimum 31 votes in the House and 16 in the Senate to secure approval.

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(Update) AZ Senate passes ‘vouchers for all’ bill – action moves to the House (approved and signed by the governor)

The Arizona Republic reports that Arizona Senate approves school voucher expansion; House continues debate:

With dozens of parents protesting at the state Capitol, Senate Republicans advanced on Thursday legislation to expand the state’s school voucher program.

The 16-13 Senate vote on SB 1431, largely along party lines, came as the House of Representatives prepared to vote on the proposal to expand the state’s Empowerment Scholarship Account program and as Gov. Doug Ducey continued meeting with key lawmakers to discuss the program.

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It was unclear whether proponents in the House would muster votes to pass the legislation as amended by the Senate.

 The legislation introduced by Republicans Debbie Lesko, of Peoria, and John Allen, of Scottsdale, would have allowed all of the state’s 1.1 million public students to use the program by 2021. Instead, Senate Republicans changed the legislation to allow within several years all students to apply for the program but limit the number who become eligible.

The limit would be based on the number of students using the program during the 2021-2022 school year, with a maximum enrollment of about 30,000 students. Until 2022, the current enrollment cap — 0.5 percent of the total public school population or about 5,500 addition students a year — would remain in place.

The current cap is set to expire in 2019.

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Governor Ducey is pushing the unconstitutional ‘vouchers for all’ bill

Governor Doug Ducey told Arizona voters last year that Prop. 123, which ended the inflation adjustment funding lawsuit by Arizona school districts, was only the “first step” towards better public education funding. For more than a year, Arizona’s have been waiting to learn what the next step is.

It turns out, everyone was played by the Governor with Prop. 123. The governor’s next step is to support the privatization of public education funded by taxpayer dollars — a direct violation of two provisions of the Arizona Constitution — by supporting the “vouchers for all” bill that was pulled before the Prop. 123 Special Election last year, and is now back again this year.

The Arizona Republic reports, Private-school vouchers appear headed to vote with Gov. Ducey’s backing:

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey is conducting a behind-the-scenes lobbying effort, pressing lawmakers to pass legislation that would expand school vouchers to all Arizona students, according to several people involved in or familiar with recent meetings.

The governor, who has avoided taking a public stance on a proposed full expansion of the divisive Empowerment Scholarship Account program, has discussed the plan with lawmakers in his Capitol office in recent days. The meetings are expected to continue Thursday, when the legislation is scheduled for votes in the state Senate and House of Representatives.

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Arizona budget battle brewing over education funding

Budget negotiations are still in the early stages between our “Koch-bot” Governor Doug Ducey and our Tea-Publican legislative leaders. The Senate has not started detailed discussions with its Tea-Publican caucus, but the House has put forward its budget outline which directly conflict with the governor’s priorities on education matters (we’re still waiting for that “next step” the governor promised after selling the bogus Prop. 123 to voters last year).

The Arizona Republic reports, Arizona House budget rejects most Ducey education proposals:

An initial budget proposal from Republicans in the Arizona House focuses available new funds on teacher raises and school capital costs, rejecting Gov. Doug Ducey’s proposal to parse it out over more than a dozen education-funding programs.

It also offers a larger tax cut than Ducey suggested.

Always with the tax cuts!

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Arizona’s school voucher program is a scam for the wealthy

Arizona’s school voucher program, known as the Empowerment Scholarship Account program, is a scam for the wealthy according to this new analysis.

The Arizona Republic reports, Arizona taxpayer-funded vouchers benefiting students in more-affluent areas:

As Arizona’s school-voucher program has expanded rapidly in the past year, students using taxpayer aid to transfer from public to private schools are abandoning higher-performing districts in more-affluent areas, according to an Arizona Republic analysis.

This year, more than 75 percent of the money pulled out of public schools for the Empowerment Scholarship Account program came from districts with an “A” or “B” rating, the analysis showed. By contrast, only 4 percent of the money came from school districts rated “D” or lower.

The findings undercut a key contention of the lawmakers and advocacy groups pressing to expand the state’s ESA program: that financially disadvantaged families from struggling schools reap the benefit of expanded school choice.

Critics, meanwhile, argue the program is largely being used by more-affluent families to subsidize their private-school tuition bills. The ESA program allows parents to take 90 percent of the money that would have gone to their school district and put it toward private school, home schooling and other educational programs.

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