Net Metering Tax Credits Discriminate

Recent legislation providing solar tax credits for residential homeowners has allowed billionaires, corporations, and Wall Street financiers to profit at the expense of working class Americans.  Solar corporations leasing panels to home owners, rather than selling, have reaped the financial benefit of solar tax credits intended for home owners to the tune of hundreds of millions.  These tax credits to solar companies have boosted dividends for their shareholders at taxpayers’ expense, while panel-leasing home owners get no immediate financial benefit.

meterWorse.  Solar tax credits discriminate against lower income communities.  Group housing, where many lower income families reside, cannot install residential solar panels, and are therefore not eligible from the get-go for these special tax credits.

Arizona is subsidizing the solar industry with $1.2 billion on residential solar, and not a dime goes to the state’s lowest income sectors – yet, another reason not to have discriminatory solar tax credits.

Further, after residential panels are installed at huge costs to taxpayers, the system of net metering goes to work, also discriminating against the working class.  Owners of solar panels can buy power from the grid as needed, or ship surplus power back to the grid when they produce more than they use.  Under net metering, solar panel owners, however, avoid paying for the service and repairs to maintain the grid.  These costs to maintain the grid are then shifted to non-solar users, placing a higher financial burden on this group, resulting in a disproportionate share of the burden falling on the aforementioned lower income sectors.

In Arizona, taxpayer subsidized solar panel ownership has led to the adding of “environmental programs cost adjustment factor” and renewable energy fees on utility bills, raising financial burdens for all non-solar users, lower income families included.  For example, the city of Scottsdale has a median family income of over $92,000.  Just in the past 5 years, they have had over 1,200 solar installations, which are eligible for state and federal subsidies.  In contrast, an area in south Phoenix with 29,000 residents and an average income of $41,000 has only 45 residential solar installations.  This is just an example, but the statistics are undeniable:  Taxpayer subsidies go to wealthier communities by a factor of 26 times more than lower income communities.

Regressive solar tax credits should end immediately.  Why have we chosen one industry over another?  And worse, we’ve chosen a discriminatory industry that keeps lower income communities down by unfairly forcing them to pay for others solar installation and operation.  Under any sun, these policies are just plain wrong.

Joe Galli

Former Executive Director – North Scottsdale Chamber of Commerce

Obamacare’s Effect on the Middle Class: Insult to Injury

A brief rant to complain about the Democrat’s Obamacare.

My middle class family cannot afford health insurance. Simply put, the premiums are too high, the deductibles have exploded and the coverage and access to doctors has gone down.

Obamacare2When President Obama said health insurance would improve, he lied. His biggest advocate here in Arizona, Kyrsten Sinema, lied.

Now my family has no coverage. We make too much money to qualify for the Medicaid expansion and we make too little money to pay the high monthly premiums – even with the subsidies!

Not only that, the new healthcare system requires individuals to give access to your bank account as a monthly debit – something I refuse to do.

I imagine there are millions of Americans who also signed up for the automatic monthly debits. When that monthly payment takes place, they better have the money in the bank or they’ll probably get hit with bank fees.

Next year when I do my taxes, I’m going to be penalized for not being able to afford health insurance. The IRS will penalize me for not signing up by reducing my tax refund (if I get one) – insult to injury!

America’s health insurance market has been made worse, far worse. Like public education, health care has been dumbed down. Middle class Americans are worse off now thanks to Democrats and President Obama.

If you’re like me, you know that elections have consequences. If you’re like me, you’ll focus your anger on the ballot box this November.

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AZ01 Poll: Andy Tobin Leads Ann Kirkpatrick by 8 Points

In the race for Arizona’s First Congressional District, challenger Andy Tobin holds a substantial 8 point lead over incumbent Ann Kirkpatrick, 51 percent to 43 percent, demonstrating a clear path to victory for Tobin.

The poll, taken September 2-4, was conducted by Dave Sackett of The Tarrance Group, one of the most respected pollsters in the country who has experience accurately polling in Arizona (see attached memo for full analysis).

Tobin holds a strong 7 point advantage among Independents, and is attracting significant cross-over appeal, earning 18 percent of the vote among registered Democrats. President Obama is very unpopular in the district, with a 57 percent disapproval rating, as is the Affordable Care Act (58 percent disapprove).

“The data speaks for itself: Ann Kirkpatrick’s record has caught up to her, and voters in Arizona’s First Congressional District are looking for a new voice to represent them in Congress,” said Tobin campaign manager Bill Cortese. “Arizonans clearly see Kirkpatrick as part of the problem in Washington and are looking to Andy Tobin for a fresh start.”

Some of the key findings:

Congressional Ballot
Tobin: 51%
Kirkpatrick: 43%
Undecided: 6%

Obama Job Approval
Disapprove: 57%
Approve: 38%

Generic Ballot
Republican: 50%
Democrat: 42%

Kirkpatrick Reelect
Ready For Someone New: 53%
Kirkpatrick Deserves Reelection: 35%

Affordable Care Act
Disapprove: 58%
Approve: 39%

Governor’s Race in AZ-01
Ducey: 47%
DuVal: 34%

Hear John Huppenthal and Diane Douglas Debate Arizona Education

Huppenthal-Douglas

On August 5, John Huppenthal (incumbent) debated challenger Diane Douglas for the position of Superintendent of Public Instruction, Arizona Department of Education.

It was a lively debate, with both candidates touting their record of support for local control of education and their opposition to federal control and meddling. Each challenged his/her opponent’s actual commitment to these principles.

Common Core, College & Career Readiness Standards (CCRS), Race to the Top, Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) Testing, school choicecost controls, ethnic studies, and student data gathering were among the topics debated.

Full video at this link.

Will Kyrsten Sinema break her silence on Lois Lerner’s “lost” emails?

Will Sinema Help Uncover the Truth Behind the IRS Scandal or Will She Help the Administration Cover Up Another Scandal?

Kyrsten Sinema

Kyrsten Sinema

WASHINGTON – Last week, the IRS sent a letter to the House Ways and Means committee explaining that they lost Lois Lerner’s emails from January 2009 to April 2011 due to a “computer crash.” These “missing emails” demonstrate the lengths the Obama Administration and Congressional Democrats will go in order to cover up the IRS’ effort to target tax-exempt conservative groups based on their political beliefs.

Sinema’s silence solidifies the fact that she has become a Washington insider and is out of touch with Arizona taxpayers. Instead of demanding answers and holding the IRS accountable, Sinema is helping the Administration cover up a scandal in hopes of political support for her re-election.

“First Lois Lerner refused to comply with Congressional investigations and now her emails are ‘missing’. That just doesn’t pass the smell test,” said NRCC Communications Director Andrea Bozek. “Kyrsten Sinema has the opportunity to protect Arizona taxpayers from being wrongfully targeted by holding the Administration accountable and condemning the IRS officials responsible for this scandal.”

IRS claims Lois Lerner’s e-mails are lost due to a computer crash.

(Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz, The IRS claims that Lois Lerner’s e-mails were wiped out by a ‘computer crash’, The Washington Post, 6/15/14)

Scott Smith sends mixed message on immigration crisis

Scott SmithTuesday, gubernatorial candidate and former Mesa Mayor Scott Smith announced he would race to the border Wednesday in order to meet with Nogales Mayor Arturo Garino. The reason for their meeting? – to hold a joint press conference to discuss the transportation and “dumping” of immigrant children by the Border Patrol in an old refurbished produce warehouse in Nogales.

In his statement, Mayor Scott Smith called the Obama Administration’s policy of dumping immigrants in Arizona a “failure of leadership” and “the absolute height of stupidity.” The former Mesa mayor also called for Washington to fix our broken border and immigration system.

Smith’s “rush to the border” and his subsequent message following the presser, seem to conflict with his longstanding position on immigration issues and even statements made by Nogales Mayor Garino who was supposedly at the same press conference as Smith.

It was Mayor Scott Smith who opposed Arizona’s effort to enforce federal immigration law through the passage of SB1070 in 2010. This is the same mayor who ran into trouble with Sheriff Joe Arpaio when it was discovered that the City of Mesa was contracting with companies who hired illegal immigrants. Apparently, now that Smith is running for higher office, he’s having to finesse his position to attract hard-line anti-immigration voters. A little pandering only goes so far. Well, maybe not so far in Santa Cruz County.

Smith was also in conflict with Mayor Garino’s statements on Monday when Garino said that all the children being held in the temporary warehouse were in good care and he was comfortable with their living conditions. Keep in mind that Mayor Garino’s record on immigration is quite dismal.  During a private meeting with President Obama, Garino told the president, “I have your back” on comprehensive immigration reform. Garino also argued that the border was secure and criticized illegal crossing prosecution. Yesterday, Garino told the Nogales International that federal officials informed him more children would be processed through the Nogales facility throughout the rest of the summer. He noted after a tour of the facility that, “Border Patrol was doing a great job.”

While the Obama Administration handed the State of Arizona another election year issue, Scott Smith is only nine days late to weigh in on the crisis. Since it was revealed that DHS and the US Border Patrol began the operation over two weeks ago, Arizona officials have already called for federal action. In fact, last Monday, Congressman Paul Gosar at the urging of Governor Brewer and State Treasurer, Doug Ducey, called for a congressional investigation with the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee into the shipping and detention of immigrants in Arizona. Congressman Darrell Issa, chairman of the committee, has pledged to look into the situation as quickly as possible.

Where gubernatorial candidate Scott Smith stands on this issue is anyone’s guess. His opposition to enforcement of immigration law as a mayor tells one story. His support for stronger enforcement as a candidate tells another story. It is an election year after all and finding the right message to appeal to voters is foremost in the mind of most candidates. Let’s hope the voters choose based on proven leadership rather than on finessed messaging.

NFIB Arizona weighs in on latest economic report

Congress can help where Arizona fell down

PHOENIX, Ariz., June 10, 2014Today’s release of one of the nation’s most trusted economic surveys casts in sharp relief how pervasive our political leaders’ inattention to small-business job creation is, according to the Arizona state director of the National Federation of Independent Business, America’s voice of small business.

As it does very month, NFIB releases its Index of Small Business Optimism, which measures the pulse of the nation’s largest employer group—Main Street entrepreneurs. Although the index rose to its highest level since 2007, the underpinnings of a strong economy are still not seismically sound.

“What stood out for me in the latest optimism index was Arizona’s missed opportunity to spur capital spending and new job creation by our own small businesses when Governor Brewer vetoed House Bill 2664 earlier this year,” said Farrell Quinlan, Arizona state director for NFIB. The bill, which passed the Legislature with overwhelming bipartisan majorities, would have created an immediate state income tax allowance for qualifying business equipment investments valued up to $500,000, similar to federal Section 179 expensing.

Indeed, in summarizing the latest optimism index, economist William Dunkelberg, its author, noted, “May’s numbers bring the Index to its highest level since September 2007. However, the four components most closely related to GDP and employment growth (job openings, job creation plans, inventory and capital spending plans) collectively fell 1 point in May.”

“Shifting capital spending into a higher gear is essential to a full and sustainable economic recovery,” said Quinlan. “Now, even though Arizona’s capital expensing vehicle stalled, Congress can turn on the ignition of job creation by passing H.R. 4457, the Small Business Tax Relief Act, when it comes up for a full House vote Thursday.

H.R. 4457 would allow small businesses to immediately deduct on their federal taxes the full value of equipment in the same year the investment is made, instead of depreciating the investment over time. This simplifies accounting and frees up cash to be reinvested and grow the business.

“The job-creation user’s manual is pretty straightforward and easy to follow,” said Quinlan. “If business owners have an incentive to invest in more equipment, they will need to hire more employees to meet the increased sales that equipment will generate. But I worry H.R. 4457 may face a similar grim fate in Congress as House Bill 2664 suffered in Arizona, despite everyone—Democrats, Republicans, business and labor—favoring it, a tragic misreading of the economy’s weakness will lead to continued inertia and another missed opportunity.”

Despite broad, bipartisan support, small-business federal expensing fell from $500,000 to $25,000 this year because previous extensions were temporary. H.R. 4457 would provide small businesses with expensing levels that are permanent, predictable and at a level adequate to their needs.Click here to read a letter 154 business associations signed and sent to Congress.

NOTE: The NFIB Research Foundation has collected Small Business Economic Trends data with quarterly surveys since 1974 and monthly surveys since 1986. Survey respondents are drawn from NFIB’s membership. The report is released on the second Tuesday of each month. For almost 40 years, NFIB’s Index of Small Business Optimism has been one of the nation’s bellwether economic barometers, used by Federal Reserve, chairmen, congressional leaders and presidential administrations.

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For more than 70 years, the National Federation of Independent Business has been the Voice of Small Business, taking the message from Main Street to the halls of Congress and all 50 state legislatures. NFIB annually surveys its members on state and federal issues vital to their survival as America’s economic engine and biggest creator of jobs. NFIB’s educational mission is to remind policymakers that small businesses are not smaller versions of bigger businesses; they have very different challenges and priorities.

Doug Ducey, Bill Montgomery conduct tele-townhall on federal immigrant dumping in Arizona

Earlier this evening, I was able to call in to a tele-townhall on the important and urgent issue of immigrant dumping in Arizona. The tele-townhall was hosted by gubernatorial candidate Doug Ducey and also included Maricopa County Attorney, Bill Montgomery. Approximately 3,000 individuals also joined in on the call.

The issue of immigrant dumping began last week when the federal government began busing illegal border crossers from Texas to Arizona and other locations. What is especially disturbing is that many of these immigrants are unaccompanied minors and women and small children.

Many of these individuals are being dropped at the Greyhound Bus depot in Phoenix in the middle of the Arizona heat. (Breitbart’s Brandon Darby wrote a feature article about this last week.)

Tonight’s call with State Treasurer Doug Ducey and MCAO Bill Montgomery revealed that the Obama administration is the driving force behind the immigrant dumping taking place. Montgomery even went as far as to describe the situation as a humanitarian crisis in the making. Because many of these immigrants are being dropped off in the heat of summer, Montgomery explained how under normal Arizona law this type of offense (abandoning a minor under 16) would be prosecuted as a class 4 felony child abuse.

Doug Ducey affirmed Montgomery’s claim that this was a humanitarian crisis developing and that President Obama had created yet another “national scandal” that it was not willing to take responsibility for.

Both Ducey and Montgomery were adamant in their charge that the federal government was not acting in the best interest of the immigrants, taxpayers, law-abiding citizens or the State of Arizona.

Several callers asked question during the call including Diane in Mesa who wanted to know how much illegal immigration was costing Americans. Another caller asked why or what the Governor could do. One caller asked about the response of Republicans to which both Ducey and Montgomery agreed that faith-based organizations can and are playing a role in addressing the immediate need to help.

Given Arizona’s inherent geographical location, this issue is not going away anytime soon and both Montgomery recognize that. But Doug Ducey remains committed to border security and putting pressure on the federal government to enforce existing laws and empowering Arizona to fulfill its role.

As Arizona’s next Governor, I am confident that Doug Ducey will mount a proper response to federally-manufactured crisis like this while advocating and soliciting humanitarian assistance from Arizonans who understand the need to enforce the law while being compassionate to those in need.

To send a message to the Obama Administration on this issue and others, please sign the petition Stop Obama!

Barry Goldwater Jr. Endorses Andy Tobin

Andy Tobin

 

June 4, 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Barry Goldwater Jr. Endorses Andy Tobin

“Andy has been tirelessly fighting for conservative values in Arizona for years.”

 

Former Congressman Barry Goldwater Jr.  announces his endorsement for Andy Tobin’s congressional campaign. Goldwater cites Andy’s battle-tested conservative values as reasons for his endorsement.

“In all the years I have known Andy Tobin, I have known him to be a fiscally responsible conservative who understands that the people he represents come first,” said former United States Congressman Barry Goldwater Jr. “Tobin is running for Congress because, like my father, he believes in states rights, limited government and personal freedoms. I have followed Andy as he led the fight against ObamaCare in Arizona from the law’s passage in 2010. I have followed his work at the legislature as he reduced government by 22%, made historic tax cuts and made Arizona one of the freest states when it comes to 2nd Amendment rights. Tobin will never stop fighting for conservative values in Arizona. He is the right candidate to represent Arizona’s 1st Congressional District in Washington. I endorse Andy Tobin wholeheartedly and I encourage everyone else in Arizona to support this great American as well.”

“My deepest thanks and appreciation go out to Barry Goldwater Jr. for his support,” said Tobin. “My mission is to faithfully fight to protect rural Arizona’s voice and vote in Washington.”

 

ABOUT ANDY TOBIN:

Andy Tobin and his wife of 28 years, Jennifer, are the proud parents of five children- three daughters and two sons. Tobin is a small business owner who has devoted his life to positively affecting his community through job creation, public service and advocating for conservative principles. Tobin’s focus has been on creating sustainable jobs, helping small businesses succeed, building a stronger middle class and putting Arizona back on track. While serving as Speaker of the Arizona House of Representatives, Tobin drastically cut government by 25 percent, balanced Arizona’s budget and presided over the largest tax cuts in Arizona’s history, saving Arizona taxpayers millions of dollars.

Tobin has fought for your family’s freedoms, your prosperity and your community for the past six years while serving in the Arizona Legislature. He continues to lead the fight to stop the implementation of the disastrous ObamaCare. As your Representative in Congress, Andy Tobin will represent your voice, and lead the charge in fighting for you against the wasteful spending, government intrusion, and out-of-touch insiders that are taking away your freedoms.

 

Join Andy Tobin today!

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For more information, please contact press@andytobin.com or 928-275-1417

Martha McSally: Who does Ron Barber Really Stand With?

Martha McSally

TUCSON – Martha McSally, Congressional candidate for Arizona’s Second District, released the following statement today after the Obama Administration announced new energy regulations on states. The regulations are expected to increase energy prices on families and businesses while eliminating jobs across the country.

“At a time when both parties should be working together on bipartisan efforts to empower small businesses and get people back to work, President Obama appears to be pushing a hyper-partisan agenda to please his campaign donors over the needs of hardworking families. Plain and simple, this is a betrayal of middle class families who will be paying more in energy costs and will see many well-paying jobs disappear. What’s more, the poor and struggling who have the least ability to afford these higher costs will be hardest hit. I call on Congressman Barber to join bipartisan opposition to these harmful regulations and stand up for families of the Second District against his party’s job-destroying agenda.”

On Monday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced draft rules that would require 30% reductions in CO2 emissions across the country over the next 15 years. Under the proposed rules, Arizona would be forced to cut emissions by 52%, the second-highest mandate for any state in the country.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce estimated last week the new regulations would cost the U.S. economy $50 billion and eliminate 224,000 jobs. The EPA also has admitted the new regulations will increase energy costs for American consumers.