Tempe Chamber Of Commerce

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Minimum Wage Ballot Advances, Net Metering Withdrawn

Posted on | April 29, 2016 | Comments Off on Minimum Wage Ballot Advances, Net Metering Withdrawn

Arizona state capitolDue to all of the budget action last week, there was little bill movement.  With the budget expected to have been finished Friday evening, the remaining bills will be completed this week.

Net Metering Ballot Measures Withdrawn

Senator Debbie Lesko (R-Peoria) and the solar industry announced that they will both withdraw their respective ballot efforts on net metering policy.  Former Corporation Commissioner Kris Mayes was leading the charge for “Yes on AZ Solar”, a measure to freeze net metering policies in place for the next six years.  In response, Lesko and the utility community began working on a proposal to compete on the ballot.   It certainly looked like a contentious battle was brewing when Governor Ducey and his staff stepped in to negotiate an agreement between the utilities and solar industry to begin settlement talks.   APS spokesman Hal Pittman said, “We’re open to engaging in constructive dialogue with SolarCity that benefits all Arizonans. Our goal, as we’ve stated, has always been to ensure fair energy policy for the state at affordable pricing for all of our customers, and sustainable solar for the long term.”

 

Minimum Wage Ballot Measure Moving Through Senate

HCR2014 (minimum wage), a Republican-supported measure to increase the state’s minimum wage, passed out of the Senate Thursday with a vote of 20-9 and was sent to the House for approval.  If approved by Arizona voters  in November, employers would have to pay at least $9.50 per hour by 2020 and would preclude the cities from requiring a higher wage.   It would also change provisions from a 2006 ballot measure that said that tipped workers can be paid $3 less than the minimum wage to say that they may be paid 65% of the minimum wage.  Some Democrats have pointed out that this could lead to a decrease from what they are currently paid.   “HCR 2014 takes into account the business owners’ perspective, providing employers predictability and certainty to be successful,” said Senator Yee (R-Phoenix) in support of the measure.

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