Valley Voices

Yee: Arizona’s economic future is on the line in this election

Posted 11/2/20

For countless Arizona voters, this presidential election is not a referendum on President Trump and his political beliefs — it is a vote to preserve our economic prosperity.

Arizona voters …

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Valley Voices

Yee: Arizona’s economic future is on the line in this election

Posted

For countless Arizona voters, this presidential election is not a referendum on President Trump and his political beliefs — it is a vote to preserve our economic prosperity.

Arizona voters know their jobs are on the line in this election.

In 2017, President Trump fulfilled one of his core promises by signing the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) — the most transformative tax reform in decades. As a result of this legislation, the average Arizona family has saved almost $2,000 on their federal income taxes every year, and stands to accumulate close to $5,500 in tax savings over the next four years if the law is kept intact.

The TCJA, however, is much more than just a tax cut. The legislation also built a foundation for economic development and broad-based prosperity by making corporate tax rates more competitive with those of other developed economies, doubling both the standard deduction and child tax credit to benefit working families, and eliminating the individual mandate that imposed hefty fines on struggling households.

The legislation also helped uplift countless low-income communities across America by creating the groundbreaking Opportunity Zones initiative, which provides tax benefits to incentivize private investment in underdeveloped communities across the country.

Despite the fact that this program is still fairly new, preliminary data suggests that Opportunity Zones are already achieving their intended purpose by encouraging job growth, wealth creation and access to vital services.

According to a recent report from the Council of Economic Advisers, the initiative “raised $75 billion in private capital by the end of 2019, most of which would not have entered Opportunity Zones without the incentive.”

The report also found that the program is boosting property values inside Opportunity Zones, creating wealth for households that need it most. “Greater amenities and economic opportunity behind the housing value increase will be broadly enjoyed, and for the nearly half of opportunity zones residents who own their homes, the increase provides an estimated $11 billion in new wealth,” the report states.

All of this is great news for Arizona, which has 168 designated Opportunity Zones.

With President Trump’s pro-growth economic policies, Arizona’s finances are strong and our operating balance is approximately $2 billion more than last year including federal funds, an +84% YOY increase. In just three months, 9.3 million U.S. jobs were added. The U.S. gross domestic product grew a record 33.1% annual rate last quarter. The economy is rebounding at a booming pace.

Phoenix leads first in the nation in home price gains with a 9.9% jump in August. According to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee, Arizona’s general fund revenue collections in August totaled $888 million, which is 10.6% above last year.

August sales tax collections grew by 9.9% above August 2019, and were $54.3 million above the forecast. According to local economists, Arizona is positioned for a faster economic recovery than the rest of the nation.

But Joe Biden says he would repeal President Trump’s tax cuts and raise our taxes by $4 trillion, damaging our economy as states work to recover during this most critical time.

Ordinary Arizonans have to consider how the outcome of this presidential election will affect our paychecks, our taxes, and the future of our children and grandchildren.

Thanks to President Trump’s policies, the Grand Canyon State has witnessed not one, but two historic economic recoveries — and on November 3, we won’t give up our newfound gains without a fight.

Editor’s note: Hon. Kimberly Yee is the State Treasurer of Arizona.

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