Minimum wage initiative is half way to its goal — sign the petition

RaiseTheWageThe coalition for the minimum wage initiative in Arizona includes Living United for Change in Arizona (LUCHA), the California-based Fairness Project, and the New York-based Center for Popular Democracy.

The Arizonans for Fair Wages and Healthy Families committee is the official filer of the initiative:

Serial No     Title/Sponsor/Description                   Filer ID
I-24-2016        The Fair Wages and Healthy Families Act     201600474

Arizonans for Fair Wages and Healthy Families
3120 North 19th Avenue
Phoenix, Arizona 85015
520-775-3247
Tomas Robles, Chairman & Applicant

Click here for full text of initiative: PDF

The Arizonans for Fair Wages and Healthy Families Campaign announced yesterday that they are about half way to their goal before the July 7 filing deadline. Supporters: Arizona halfway to $12 minimum wage:

The drive to raise Arizona’s minimum wage to $12 an hour is more than halfway toward its goal of qualifying for the November ballot, supporters announced Tuesday.

The Fair Wages and Healthy Families campaign proposes boosting the current $8.05 hourly minimum to $10 on Jan. 1, 2017, and gradually increasing it to hit $12 an hour by 2020. After that, it would be adjusted annually to reflect changes in the consumer-price index.

Tip workers would see a base hike to $9 an hour.

The initiative also would require employers to offer mandatory sick leave: five days a year for companies with 15 or more employees and three days a year for those with fewer than 15.

Tomas Robles, deputy campaign chairman, said the group has collected nearly 90,000 signatures toward the 150,642 required to qualify for the ballot.

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Pima County wins lawsuit against our lawless Tea-Publican legislature

A little less than a year ago, I posted about Pima County sues our lawless Tea-Publican Arizona legislature:

lastgreatactofdefiancePima County sued the state Monday, claiming its new budget illegally forces millions of dollars in education spending onto county taxpayers.

The county’s [lawsuit seeks] to undo the shift of more than $45 million in costs back to counties in Gov. Doug Ducey’s budget plan approved by the Legislature in March.

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In fiscal year 2016, Pima County officials estimate they’ll have to cover as much as $18.6 million in additional aid to TUSD that in past years would have been provided by the state.

Attorneys for Pima County argue that the cost shift amounts to an unconstitutional requirement for the county to raise taxes. The attorneys says it would unconstitutionally require Arizonans in one jurisdiction be taxed to pay for services in another because Pima County residents who don’t live in TUSD would be forced to subsidize the district.

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(Update) Our lawless Tea-Publican legislature faces another lawsuit for its failure to fund public education

I first posted about this pending lawsuit back in February 2015. This lawsuit from the Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest is still pending and not yet filed, but may be ready to file soon. Our lawless Arizona legislature faces another lawsuit for its to fund public education:

education_appleMeanwhile, an earlier case in which our lawless Arizona legislature shortchanged our public schools, in which the Arizona Supreme Court held that the statutory financing scheme for public education violated the Arizona Constitution, Article XI, § 1, Roosevelt Elem. School Dist. No. 66  v. Bishop (No. CV-93-0168 1994), is now the basis for yet another lawsuit against our lawless Arizona legislature.

The Arizona Capitol Times (subscription required) reports, Lawsuit will seek funding for school maintenance:

A public interest advocacy group is planning a lawsuit alleging that the state has unconstitutionally underfunded building maintenance and soft capital for school districts, which could force the state restore hundreds of millions of dollars of budget cuts made in recent years.

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The ‘next step’ after Prop. 123 — to the courts!

Don’t say that I didn’t warn you that Prop. 123 was just trading one lawsuit for another lawsuit(s).  The Prop 123 settlement still has to be agreed to by the Court.

State Treasurer Jeff DeWit has said that he or others may file a lawsuit to block Prop. 123. Proposition 123 could end 1 lawsuit, start another:

[If Prop. 123] passes, DeWit has said he expects another lawsuit, though not necessarily filed by him, against the ballot measure that voters will decide in a May 17 special election.

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1-2-3“I have a legal opinion that says Congress has to act,” DeWit said. “As a constitutional officer, I have to abide by the legal opinions before me.”

“I’ve never said I’m going to sue. I’ve said I expect there to be a lawsuit,” he later said, noting that he is aware of at least two possible cases being considered from others.

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[T]here are whispers of a separate case raising the issue of congressional approval and the modified Enabling Act.

Those challenges, which would be needed only if Prop. 123 passes, could bottle up money the schools expect during the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, said Chuck Essigs, director of governmental relations for the Arizona Association of School Business Officials.

That means a legal challenge, depending on when it was filed and if it included an order to hold up the extra funds while the case was considered, could quickly affect school-funding plans for the fall.

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