Job Creators Cheer Referral of Proposition 116

Small Business Job Creation Act rolls back job-killing equipment and machinery tax

PHOENIX, Ariz., April 25, 2012 — The Arizona Secretary of State today received transmission from the Arizona Legislature of a crucial ballot referendum designed to spur new job creation and economic development. The state constitutional amendment, called the Small Business Job Creation Act, is positioned to be on Arizona’s November 6, 2012 General Election ballot as Proposition 116.

“Arizona’s small business job creators have heard loud and clear from their state legislators that help is on the way to rollback the job-killing equipment and machinery tax,” said Farrell Quinlan, state director for the National Federation of Independent Business who drafted the referendum with Senate Majority Leader Andy Biggs and other lawmakers.

“The heavy tax burden we place on small business’ equipment and machinery is self-defeating and anti-growth because it punishes the very investment in job creation that Arizona needs to fuel our economic recovery,” Quinlan said.

The Proposition 116 referendum, enumerated Senate Concurrent Resolution 1012 in its legislative form, seeks to amend the Arizona Constitution to reset the personal property tax exemption for new equipment and machinery purchases to an amount equal to the earnings of 50 Arizona workers, approximately $2.4 million. The current constitutional exemption is $50,000 indexed to inflation since 1996 or $68,079 in Tax Year 2012.

“We are very encouraged about Proposition 116’s ultimate success at the ballot box due to the unanimous bipartisan support it received from legislators. It’s a real testament to the soundness of this public policy proposal that every Republican and Democrat lawmaker voted for it. Proposition 116 proves the adage that good policy makes for good politics,” Quinlan concluded.

The unanimous legislative support for SCR 1012 is a rare example of bipartisan consensus from the contentious and often bitterly partisan 50th Arizona Legislature. The Arizona Senate passed the legislation 30-0 on February 16, 2012 and the Arizona House of Representatives passed it 51-0 with eight absent and one vacancy on April 23, 2012.

Proposition 116 must garner 50 percent plus one vote of those voting on the measure this November to amend the state constitution. If passed, the new provisions will affect personal property purchased in 2013 and thereafter while personal property already on the tax rolls will remain unaffected.

According to state law, the Secretary of State will make official the designation of the Small Business Job Creation Act referendum as Proposition 116 after the petition filing deadline passes for citizen initiatives on July 5, 2012. The Secretary of State is required to assign numbers to propositions in the order the measures are filed with their office. SCR 1012 was the third referendum filed for the 2012 ballot following the two measures sent by the Legislature in 2011 that will be designated Proposition 114 and Proposition 115 respectively in accordance with statute.

NFIB has already begun organizing a campaign committee to support the passage of Proposition 116. Those interested in joining that effort should contact NFIB’s Arizona office at (602) 263-7690 or send an email to farrell.quinlan@nfib.org.

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NFIB is the nation’s leading small business association with 350,000 members nationwide and 7,500 in Arizona and has offices in Washington, D.C. and all 50 state capitals.  Founded in 1943 as a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, NFIB gives small and independent business owners a voice in shaping the public policy issues that affect their business. NFIB’s powerful network of grassroots activists send their views directly to state and federal lawmakers through our unique member-only ballot, thus playing a critical role in supporting America’s free enterprise system. NFIB’s mission is to promote and protect the right of our members to own, operate and grow their businesses. More information is available online at www.NFIB.com/newsroom.


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