Learn about the 2008 Arizona Ballot Issues

Prop. 100 - Protect Our Homes

Sponsor: Arizona Association of Realtors
What it would do: Amend the state Constitution to prohibit the creation of real-estate transfer taxes.
Pro: The initiative would protect families and businesses from a damaging real estate sales or transfer tax on homes or property. Since home and property owners already pay annual property taxes, an additional tax, levied at the time people buy, sell or transfer ownership of their home would be double taxation.
Con: The measure would close off one avenue of potential tax income for the state and change the state's Constitution to protect real estate corporations and developers. It is an attempt to tie the hands of Arizona's elected officials as they try to deal with the costs of meeting Arizona's needs.
The bottom line: Would close off one avenue of potential tax income for the state.
RareHero says vote NO: Limiting income for the state is never a good thing. At a time when the state is struggling to find money to pay for anything (like higher education) voting for this proposition would really hurt Arizona's future.

Prop. 101 - Freedom of Choice in Health Care Act

Sponsor: Doctors, patients and business owners
What it would do: Bars the state from restricting patients' ability to choose their own health-care system or insurance program, or to pay directly for medical services. Blocks the state from penalizing patients for choosing to obtain or decline health-care coverage.
Pro: The Medical Choice initiative would preserve the rights of patients to make their own health-care decisions and block health-care reform proposals influenced by insurance companies, lobbyists and other special interest groups that try to cut costs and thereby limit health-care options for consumers. It would create a constitutional amendment that would lay the groundwork for a solution to the health-care crisis.
Con: The initiative could bar any type of single-payer universal health-care system in Arizona, thereby limiting access to health care for some patients. It is too ambiguous and vague, and would end up in the courts as lawyers try to interpret the meaning of the law. Because the initiative would amend the state Constitution, the law, and any unintended consequences, would be extremely difficult to reverse.
Rarehero says vote NO: The initiative could bar any type of single-payer universal health-care system in Arizona.

Prop. 102 - Gay-marriage ban

Sponsor: Referendum sponsored by Senate President Tim Bee and House Speaker Jim Weiers, both Republicans
What it would do: Amend state Constitution to define marriage as between a man and a woman. State law already contains that definition.
Pro: Arizona's law preserving marriage as legal only between one man and one woman is not enough. The state needs a constitutional amendment. As evidenced in several states, laws can be declared "unconstitutional" by a few judges who rule based on their own personal views.
Con: The measure is unnecessary, as there is already a law in Arizona that prohibits marriage except that between one man and one woman. That law has survived court challenges; it was upheld by the state Court of Appeals and the Arizona Supreme Court let it stand. Arizona does not need unnecessary amendments of the state Constitution.
The bottom line: A more expansive measure that would have barred the state from recognizing civil unions of same-sex couples failed in 2006. But it's unclear whether opponents can mount a successful challenge a second time around.
RareHero says vote NO: I'm already against marriage, especially for people that get married before the age of 28 so it should come as a surprise that I don't support this proposition because it is my firm belief that people are people. If a person wants to marry another person, go for it. They're probably just going to get divorced later anyway. I just don't understand why some of you are so set on the idea that gay marriage will destroy Amerikan families. Like Lewis Black said, we're so fucked up we better put it in the constitution so we don't forget who we're supposed to marry.

Prop. 105 - Majority Rules, Let the People Decide

Sponsor: Fast-food franchisee MJKL Enterprises/alcohol distributors
What it would do: Require that any initiative imposing new taxes or fees, as well any that mandate new spending, must have support from a majority of Arizona registered voters, whether they go to the polls or not.
Pro: The Majority Rules Initiative would make it harder for special interests to use ballot initiatives to raise our taxes. Previous initiatives have created out of control state spending and burdensome regulations by special interests of using the ballot box. This initiative says if the voters of Arizona want to enact new taxes and mandates on government and the private sector, the measure must be passed by a majority of those qualified to vote in that election.
Con: This deceptive initiative is intended to tie the hands of voters in Arizona. The measure will make it nearly impossible for civic and community organizations to affect public policy through the will of the voter.
The bottom line: Raises the threshold for voters to increase taxes and spending. Currently, it takes just a majority of voters who actually vote to pass new taxes.
RareHero says vote NO: Limiting income for the state is never a good thing. At a time when the state is struggling to find money to pay for anything (like higher education) voting for this proposition would really hurt Arizona's future.

Prop 200 - Payday Loan Reform Act

Sponsor: Arizona Community Financial Services Association/payday lenders
What it would do: Preserves small, short-term loans known as payday loans through rate cuts, the elimination of loan extensions and a new repayment plan.
Pro: Every day in Arizona, thousands of hardworking people use a payday loan to meet unexpected financial challenges while avoiding expensive bounced-check fees, overdraft fees, late bill payment penalties, and other less desirable short-term credit options. The time has come to implement reforms in the industry to further protect consumers, improve the way companies do business in Arizona, and preserve this financial option for those customers who choose it. This asure would enact such reforms.
Con: The measure will not really reform the state's payday loan mess; things will only get worse because the problems will become permanent. Payday lenders are notorious for making huge profits by exploiting the financial hardship of people with limited resources, especially the poor and young people, and those living near military bases and in low-income communities. This measure would allow that to continue, and would halt the Legislature's efforts to reform payday loans.
The bottom line: Halts Legislature's efforts to kill payday loans.
RareHero says vote NO: I doubt that payday lenders would propose something that would limit their ability to take advantage of the people they serve.

Prop. 201 - Homeowners' Bill of Rights

Sponsor: Sheet Metal Workers' International Association
What it would do: Help homeowners deal with construction defects and deceptive sales practices.
Pro : It would give homeowners better legal footing in disputes with home builders by balancing the legal rights between homebuilders and their customers, who have been denied reasonable protection against deceptive sales practices and construction defects.
Con: The proposal creates a mandatory and complex litigation process that will cause unnecessary lawsuits without resolving homeowner's problems. The title is misleading and affords homeowners fewer rights than the laws that are currently in place in Arizona.
The bottom line: It gives homeowners better legal footing in disputes with home builders.
rarehero says vote YES: I support unions and so should you. This would help consumers fight back against predatory business practices.

Prop. 202 - Stop Illegal Hiring

Sponsor: Business group Wake Up Arizona!
What it would do: Provide more protection to employers who violate state employer-sanctions law while targeting the pay-in-cash labor market and identity theft.
Pro: The measure is tough because it gives law enforcement the tools they need to target the underground, black market cash economy; removes illegal immigrants' ability to conceal their undocumented status by strengthening identity theft statutes; and creates a two-strike penalty that puts employers out of business if they hire illegal immigrants. Most importantly, the law allows police to arrest employers who knowingly accept fake documents from any person seeking employment. It protects innocent employees by targeting employers who don't verify documents or who skirt taxes by paying cash only. It ensures a fair complaint process and protects law-abiding businesses and their employees. It does not mandate the use of flawed databases and directs all fines collected to schools and hospitals, where the effects of illegal immigration are great.
Con: The initiative is designed to sound good to voters while giving employers amnesty in advance for hiring illegals. Punishments include fines and/or loss of the company business license. But businesses not requiring a license are automatically exempt. Also exempt from punishment are incorporated companies, partnerships and Transaction Privilege Licenses. Most corporate retailers like restaurants, hotels and retail chains are exempt. Arizona's current employer sanctions law has been working extremely well at reducing illegal immigration in Arizona. The Stop Illegal Hiring ballot measure stands in stark contrast in both form and substance to our current law that was passed by the Legislature and signed by the governor.
The bottom line: A competing initiative toughening the employer-sanction law failed to qualify for the ballot, clearing the way for the business-backed proposal.
rarehero says vote NO: This one is a bit confusing. Be sure to read more about it here.

Prop. 300 - Legislative Salary Increase

Sponsor: Commission on Salaries for Elective State Officers
What it would do: Raise state legislators' salaries from $24,000 to $30,000
Pro: Lawmakers are seriously underpaid and deserve a raise. Their compensation of only $24,000 per year has not been raised for many years and must be improved to attract the best and brightest to legislative service, especially people who may not work for a large business or utility that can afford to subsidize their incomes. At the current salary, the pool of citizens able to serve in the Legislature is limited.
Con: Being elected to the Legislature is a civic minded contribution, not a career. Lawmakers should be able to meet for less than 100 days each year, pass a budget, and go home to pursue other jobs.
The bottom line: Arizona lawmakers are overdue for a pay raise. But the odds are against it: Voters have rejected a number of similar measures in recent years.
rarehero says vote NO: This is the same legislature that has voted time and again to cut spending where it has been needed most. That sounds a bit vengeful but I think people should vote no until the legislature starts doing what is expected of it. Unfortunately, voting no may inhibit others from pursuing public service because their bank accounts are unable to support a campaign and taking time off of their day job.


K said...

Thank you for this information. It's important to always stay informed with what's going on in the elections. Thanks for the info about the payday loans .

Chris said...

Faxless Payday Loans are a great help to countless people. It is sad that the few who are irresponsible with their finances give the institution a bad name.

Trista said...

The payday loans industry has helped so many people it's to bad they are getting a bad name for people that are over extending themselves.

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