Ducey solicited business owners to oppose education tax that passed

(Disclosure: Rose Law Group represents Ann Siner of My Sister’s Closet and Judge John Buttrick in their litigation efforts against 208.)

By Howard Fischer | Capitol Media Services 

It didn’t work anyway.

But Gov. Doug Ducey’s is apparently off the legal hook over comments he made in a phone call from his office to business owners and managers urging that they try to defeat Proposition 208.

Michael Catlett, the state’s deputy solicitor general, said there is no question but that Ducey, in a conference call in September with some members of the business community, argued that the 3.5% surcharge on incomes above $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for married couples filing jointly to help fund public education would be “a small business killer.”

In the same conversation from his office, the governor argued that the dollars raised “won’t get to the classroom and they won’t benefit our teachers.” And he encouraged those on the call to “go directly to the (web) site” of foes of Proposition 208 and “please help spread the word.”

But Catlett, responding to a complaint filed by the attorney for the pro-208 Invest in Education Committee, said the governor did not violate laws which prohibit the use of public resource to influence an election. And he said the attorney general’s office will not pursue the matter.


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February 2021