The Pinal Regional Transportation Authority Proposition 417, approved by voters in 2017, has been determined valid by the Arizona Court of Appeals.
"We find the Prop 417 tax to be valid. The RTA’s authorizing resolution does not change the substance of the question posed to and approved by the voters; the tax, by its terms, applies across all transaction privilege tax classifications; and the tax includes a valid, constitutional modified rate as applied to the retail sales classification. Accordingly, we reverse the order invalidating the tax," according to the decision on Vangilder, et. al. v. Pinal County, et. al.
A link to the decision is at azcourts.gov/coa1/Decisions/SearchDecisions. Type in Pinal at "Case Title / Party:" and hit submit.
"I am very pleased with the outcome,” Pinal County Manager Louis Andersen said in a release. “The county is ready to start building these critical infrastructure/road projects and have been for some time now. This is a great way to start the new year.”
“Apache Junction and the surrounding communities are in line to reap huge benefits and improve our quality of life once the North-South Interconnect is completed," Apache Junction Mayor Jeff Serdy said in the release.
In November 2017, Pinal County voters approved Proposition 416 to adopt a regional transportation plan and Proposition 417 to enact an excise tax to fund the plan. Shortly afterwards, legal action took place with the Goldwater Institute and a court ruling froze all monies related to the excise tax, the release states.
"It is sad that the Goldwater Institute felt compelled to challenge the county voters' approval of the RTA tax for road improvement,” Pinal County Board of Supervisors Vice-Chairman Pete Rios said in the release. “Glad that the court of appeals ruled in the county's favor."
To date, there is slightly over $29 million ready to be used for improvements. RTA officials are eager and anxious to finally be able to move forward with the much-needed roadway and transportation projects, the release states.
"This is a great victory for Pinal County and its residents,” Pinal County Board of Supervisors Chairman Anthony Smith said in the release. “My hope is that we can finally get about the business of building the modern road network that the voters approved over two years ago."