VIDEO: Parents are rallying behind Prop 123

Here is the latest ad by Prop 123 showing parents rallying behind the measure to get more money in their children’s classrooms.

Parents are rallying behind Prop 123 because it will put $3.5 billion into the classroom over the next 10 years. It will help Arizona schools pay teachers what they deserve and ensure our students have the resources they need in the classroom.
Share this video with a parent you know, so they know that a YES vote on Prop 123 is our best chance to improve our public schools.

WATCH: Get Out The Vote For Prop 123

Did you get your early ballot in the mail?

When you do, vote YES on Prop 123, and put it right back in your mailbox. If you plan to vote on Election Day, make sure you mark your calendar for May 17!

Why?

Prop 123 will put $3.5 billion into K-12 public schools over the next 10 years without raising your taxes. That’s money our kids and teachers need to succeed in the classroom.

Today, the campaign released a new video with parents, grandparents and teachers urging you to vote YES on Prop 123. It’s a common-sense solution that better uses our state land trust for its intended purpose: funding our public schools. And it protects the trust, which will still grow by $1 billion over 10 years if Prop 123 passes.

Can we count on you to vote YES on Prop 123?

Team Prop 123

Get the Facts on Prop 123

GetFacts123

Early voting has started, so we want to make sure you have the facts about Proposition 123 before you cast your ballot.  Prop 123 is a sustainable plan to fund K-12 education in Arizona and give teachers and students the resources they need.

Please forward this post to at least one friend or family member to make sure they have the facts before voting in the May 17 special election.

Get the facts below, visit YESProp123.com, or email contact@yesprop123.com if you have questions!

  • Prop 123 doesn’t raise taxes. Prop 123 uses additional dollars from the state land trust fund to give teachers and students the resources they need without raising our taxes. It’s a financially responsible and sustainable way to help our schools.
  • Prop 123 puts $3.5 billion into the classroom. This money will have a real impact over the next decade. It will give teachers and students stability and the resources they need to succeed.
  • Prop 123 gives local control to school districts. No one knows better where this money needs to go than principals, school board members, and teachers. Prop 123 will give individual districts control over the funds to ensure local decision-making and teacher input.
  • Prop 123 protects the trust. According to the non-partisan Joint Legislative Budget Committee, even with the higher distributions of funds from Prop 123, the state land trust will grow by over $1 billion over 10 years. The trust will continue to grow under Prop 123 so it can fund education for future generations.
  • Prop 123 keeps quality teachers. Teachers are fleeing Arizona because of a lack of financial support for education. This will reverse that trend and help pay our teachers what they deserve.

Learn more about why Prop 123 is a financially responsible solution in Robert Robb’s column, “Prop. 123 doesn’t bust the state land trust” below.

Thanks,

Team Prop 123

Gov Ducey: Why Vote For Prop 123? Some Teachers Have More Kids Than Books​

Vote Prop 123

By: Governor Doug Ducey

This week, Arizonans will receive early ballots in the mail for one of the most important policy initiatives of this election cycle – the passage of Proposition 123 to increase funding for public schools in Arizona.

As many in our state know, there has been a dark cloud hanging over Arizona’s budget when it comes to funding education.

Our kids have needs today

Voting “yes” on Prop. 123 will settle a years-long lawsuit and put $3.5 billion into our K-12 public schools over the next 10 years without raising taxes. It’s time to stop paying lawyers and start paying teachers.

I’ve visited schools all across our state, and the message is clear. Our kids have needs today, and our educators need more resources to do their jobs.

Prop. 123 is a fiscally responsible, historic first step towards giving our students and teachers the resources they need. It puts money back in the classroom. And it doesn’t raise taxes. I know it sounds almost too good to be true: If this doesn’t raise taxes, how are we paying for it?

How it works

What many don’t know is that Arizona has a something called the State Land Trust – a fund with assets that have been set aside and invested for decades specifically to benefit education. This plan ensures we are managing the trust responsibly while putting the money to use for the purpose it was intended: funding our K-12 public schools.

So how does it work?

When Arizona became a state, the federal government granted our founders nearly 11 million acres of state land. Every time we sell a piece of that land, proceeds go into the Land Trust where the money is invested and earns interest. The trust has been growing rapidly in value – nearly doubling in the past five years. And now it is valued at more than $5 billion.

Currently, only 2.5 percent of the trust is distributed to schools every year. We can do better. A “yes” vote on Prop. 123 will increase the distribution rate to 6.9 percent for the next 10 years. That means we will be able to use more of this money for its intended purpose: funding our schools.

We haven’t ignored future needs

But this plan also takes into account the needs of future generations. An analysis done by the non-partisan Joint Legislative Budget Committee shows that even with the higher distributions if Prop 123 passes, there will be more than $6 billion in the Land Trust in a decade. That’s a billion dollars more in the trust after 10 years, even while we are increasing funding to education.

And let’s not forget: Arizona still has 9.2 million acres of land worth approximately $70 billion that are yet to be sold and fund the trust.

The bottom line is that passing Prop 123 ensures the long-term health of the trust, while injecting an infusion of resources into classrooms that have needs today.

When there are more kids than books

I’ve met with teachers and parents across the state, and they’ve made it clear — while reforms are important, right now they need resources to provide the excellent education all our children deserve.

Too often, I hear stories of teachers and parents spending part of their paychecks to ensure there are supplies in the classroom – even basic necessities like pens, pencils and paper. This is unacceptable.

Just a few weeks ago, I met a fourth-grade teacher named Maddy Sporbert who was volunteering for Prop. 123. She told me that she wants Prop. 123 to pass because right now she has 34 students in her class, but only 25 textbooks.

She was spending spring break — her vacation — getting out the vote for Prop. 123 to ensure her students have enough textbooks next year. She needs us to vote “yes.”

Good teachers are fleeing our state

Eighth-grade science teacher Paul Strauss told me that in his many years of teaching he’s seen countless dedicated teachers leave the profession because it is so hard to support a family on a teacher’s salary in Arizona.

We know teachers are fleeing our state or leaving the profession because of a continued lack of funding for education. Voting “yes” on Prop 123 will allow us to reverse that trend and start paying teachers what they deserve. In fact, school boards across Arizona have committed that boosting teacher salaries will be their number one priority if Prop. 123 passes.

Many districts even have two budgets: one if Prop. 123 passes, and one if it fails.

If it fails, that means more litigation and less certainty for our teachers and students.

Please join me, Mayor Greg Stanton, a bipartisan coalition of legislators, countless community and business leaders, teachers and parents in voting “yes” for Prop. 123 on May 17.

Sierra Vista Herald: Yes on Prop 123!

No tax increase
Sierra Vista Herald
04.18.2016

The bottom line? Prop. 123 will not cost taxpayers a dime while it pumps $3.5 billion into education over the next 10 years.

The money is coming from the State Land Trust — property deeded to Arizona by the federal government with the stipulation that when the state sells it, the money is used for education.

Gov. Ducey is proposing to do just that with his support of this legislation to change the State Constitution and accelerate the amount of money that can be allocated from the trust over the next decade. It is the closest thing to a guarantee for public education that it will receive at least 71 percent of the money Arizona schools were entitled to, before the State Legislature chose to ignore Proposition 300.

That “assurance” points to the most infuriating aspect of the debate on whether to check “yes,” or “no” on your ballot for the May 17 statewide referendum.

If state lawmakers had followed the provisions of Prop. 300, which Arizona voters approved in the 2000 election, the upcoming ballot would not be necessary. Instead, legislators in 2008 took money specifically allocated for education and spent it from the general fund to avoid increasing taxes during a national economic recession.

Public schools filed a lawsuit which after eight years since the funds were lost, advanced as far as the State Supreme Court, with the judicial branch in strong agreement that Arizona lawmakers owed as much as $1.3 billion to the education fund.

During that eight year span, public education in Arizona has spiraled to the bottom of national benchmarks. Compensation for teachers is among the lowest in the country, the ratio of teachers to student is among the highest, and today the Legislature allocates less revenue per student, than any other state in our Union. Arizona ranks 50th.

The consequence to education of the Legislature’s financial policies — in just eight years — has been catastrophic. Good teachers have left the profession in droves, student achievement scores are well below national standards and Arizona public schools cannot afford to invest in textbooks or the technology to keep up with the rest of the nation.

Imagine what the next eight years would be like if opponents of Prop. 123 get their way at the ballot box on May 17. If the referendum fails, public schools will go back to court to try and recover the money they are rightly owed, but there is little that will compel the current Legislature to be earnest in finding a solution to its $1.3 billion obligation. As Gov. Ducey said when he proposed this plan, it’s past time that Arizona taxpayers continued paying lawyers to negotiate a settlement between two government entities.

The solution for those who oppose Prop. 123 isn’t found by defeating the only assured source of revenue for public education over the next decade.

To change the behavior of the Legislature, it is incumbent on those who support education to change the membership. Electing representatives who are in tune with what public schools need to survive and prosper is the best way to prevent future State Senators and State Representatives from breaking the law and overruling a voter-approved proposition.

We strongly endorse a “Yes” vote on Proposition 123 on the May 17 ballot.

Former U.S. Congressman Frank Riggs Endorses Proposition 123

Former U.S. Congressman Frank Riggs Endorses Proposition 123

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 12, 2016

Former U.S. Congressman Frank Riggs Endorses Proposition 123

PHOENIX — Former U.S. Congressman Frank Riggs today endorsed Proposition 123 because the initiative is a conservative, innovative solution to funding our K-12 public schools.

“I think Proposition 123 is the best, conservative solution out there to providing increased, stable funding for Arizona’s K-12 public schools,” Frank Riggs, Scottsdale businessman, former U.S. Congressman and nonprofit CEO, said.  “It will put $3.5 billion into our K-12 schools without raising income taxes, money to address critical education needs, promote classroom teaching and learning, and recruit and retain talented educators.  Please join me in voting ‘YES’ on Prop 123 on May 17; it’s innovative, it’s creative and it’s exactly what we need to support our teachers, students and Arizona’s future.”

“As a former United States Congressman, member of the House Education Committee and a small business owner, Frank Riggs knows exactly the situation Arizona faces right now,”  Sharon Harper, chairman of the Let’s Vote Yes for Arizona Schools said. “He understands that we need to fund our schools and keep teachers from leaving the state to give Arizona’s kids the future they deserve. That’s why need we need to vote YES on May 17.”

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WATCH: Teachers Explain Why They Support Prop 123

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Today, we released our latest ad where teachers explain why it’s so important to support Prop 123.
If Prop 123 passes, $3.5 billion will flow into school districts across the state over the next decade.

This is all possible without raising taxes and it will provide students much-needed stability so they have every opportunity to learn, achieve and succeed.

But, these teachers and students need your help to ensure Prop 123 passes.

Please sign up to volunteer using the button below, to help spread the word about why it’s SO IMPORTANT to vote YES on May 17.

VOLUNTEER FOR PROPOSITION 123

 

Governor Doug Ducey: I’m Voting Yes on Prop 123

The committee Let’s Vote Yes For Arizona Schools, In Support of Prop 123 released the following ad today featuring Governor Doug Ducey explaining why he supports Prop 123.

In the ad, Governor Ducey provides reasons how and why Arizonans should support public teachers. Passage of the proposition will provide $3.5 Billion directly into our public schools over the next 10 years without raising any taxes. This money will be used to invest into teachers to reverse the trend of teachers leaving Arizona due to low compensation.

Governor Ducey, the father of three sons, knows firsthand the impact that great teachers have on a child. That’s why he’s supporting Prop 123 on May 17th.

For DeWit, the Media Spotlight Trumps Arizona’s K-12 Education

Last night Governor Doug Ducey called a special session in order to approve a K-12 education plan that will put an end to litigation and put $3.5 billion back into K-12 education without raising taxes.

State Treasurer Jeff DeWit has been whining for months about the plan, but he wasn’t in Phoenix yesterday to answer questions or offer any sustentative alternatives. He was in Boulder, Colorado, following around Presidential candidate Donald Trump like an eager puppy. Hopefully, Treasurer DeWit wasn’t seeking financial advice from The Donald.

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It’s actually no surprise to see DeWit and Trump together. Both have the same thirst for attention from the media. The mainstream media, all too happy to play-up the egotists and swindlers on the right, are happy to give them the airtime.

Meanwhile, the business of helping Arizona’s children get the funding they need continues. From The Arizona Capitol Times:

 

The House and Senate Appropriations committees began considering the bills at 8:30 a.m. The bills will then head to both chambers’ Rules committees and Republican and Democratic caucuses. Both chambers are scheduled to debate and take a final vote on the package at 1:30 p.m. today.

 

Will DeWit be back in Arizona today or will his need to seek the spotlight trump his phony rhetoric?

Democrat Amateurs Wanna Recall Diane Douglas

EGBThe Arizona Secretary of State provided notice today that a committee filed an application to recall Diane Douglas.

The committee calls itself “The Coalition to Recall Diane Douglas” and has listed Maxwell Goshert as its Chairman and David J. Bier as its Treasurer.

Who you won’t find on the official paperwork is Anthony Espinoza who originally beat his chest about starting the recall. That’s because Espinoza was discovered to be posting gay nude selfies across various websites which becomes a problem when you’re a technology teacher at a west valley elementary school trying to spearhead a major political campaign. Nevertheless, Espinoza remains associated with the recall effort as its “founder” which we find bizarre give political campaigns and their committees never use that title.

According to the application filing with the Secretary of State’s office, the grounds for the filing is:

“Since taking office in January 2015, Diane Douglas has demonstrated that she lacks the ability and expertise to serve professionally and politically in her elected position as the Arizona State Superintendent of Public Instruction. From a fiduciary standpoint, Superintendent Douglas has consistently and recklessly jeopardized valuable and vital education education funding due to her unwillingness to execute various federal and state education laws and State Board of Education policies. In regards to her leadership role, she has not upheld the virtue of the constitutional public office to which she was elected, refusing to fulfill not only her basic duties under A.R.S. 15-251 but also to adhere to the checks and balances of the Arizona state government system. Most importantly, she is not fulfilling her basic state duties superintending the schools of Arizona, focusing more on how to increase her power and position rather than how to increase student achievement, teacher effectiveness, school performance, stakeholder relations, and educational funding. Education is in a crisis fiscally, professionally, socially, and emotionally in Arizona. Education in Arizona needs a strong leader to lead its stakeholders and citizens during this time of crisis. Diane Douglas has proven she is not that leader.”

Whatever your opinion of Diane Douglas, these young naive liberal activists are amateurs.

Quick to respond to the filing, the Arizona Republican Party issued the following statement:

PHOENIX – This afternoon Chairman Robert Graham of the Arizona Republican Party brushed off the announcement from two voters in the Democratic Party that they would attempt to gather signatures to recall Diane Douglas, the Republican who was elected last year to serve as Arizona’s Superintendent of Public Instruction.

“It looks like these young Democrats are following the lead of their party elders and wasting time and money on useless complaining about the outcome of the election in which the Republicans clearly dominated the opposition,” said Arizona Republican Party Chairman Robert Graham. “We have frequent elections at every level of government in this nation for a reason, and as a party we fight hard on behalf of our platform and our candidates. It’s disrespectful to the voters for these Democrats to suddenly wake up and decide they know better than voters.”

Douglas received 740,000 votes in the 2014 election, which was more than enough votes to defeat her opponent for that office. Her vote total also exceeded the vote total for each and every one of the Democrats on the ballot running for statewide office: Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Mine Inspector, and Corporation Commission.

“Their plan is to raise and spend at least a million dollars to get enough signatures before the end of the year and they haven’t raised a dime yet, so I think they’re going to have a very disappointing Christmas,” Graham added.

Watch for this recall effort to fail miserably.

The Democratic Party establishment is silent and most likely publicly shunning the effort. (Not a byte on its website or Twitter feed.)

Amateurs are running the show and won’t have the support to collect the signatures to place it on the ballot.

In one year, Diane Douglas will still be the Superintendent of Public Instruction and these young activist will be a little bit wiser. Ironically, they’ll be able to thank their target for teaching them a hard lesson in political science.