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Yes. A city or town under home rule may adopt a permanent base adjustment. The Economic Estimates Commission will use the adjusted base limit to calculate the city’s or town’s constitutional expenditure limitation for the year following a permanent base adjustment’s voter approval. However, the city or town is still subject to its home rule if the home rule has not expired.
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NO. If Proposition 423 passes, the only outcome is that it provides the city of Apache Junction the ability to budget for and spend the revenues it already collects. The Permanent Base Adjustment option does not empower the Apache Junction City Council to create new and additional taxes, nor does it enable the City to spend beyond the revenues it receives.
Home rule—Arizona Constitution, Article IX, §20(9), allows a city or town to adopt an alternative expenditure limitation (home rule) with voter approval at a regularly scheduled election for the nomination or election of its governing board members. Home rule prescribes the method the city or town will use to calculate its expenditure limitation each year. Voters must approve home rule before the first fiscal year to which it applies. Home rules apply for four succeeding fiscal years, after which the constitutional expenditure limitation becomes effective unless voters adopt a new home rule.Permanent base adjustment—Arizona Constitution, Article IX, §20(6), allows a city or town to permanently adjust its base limit with voter approval at a regularly scheduled general election or a nonpartisan election held for the nomination or election of its governing board members. The Economic Estimates Commission will use the adjustment to calculate the constitutional expenditure limitation beginning with the fiscal year immediately following the fiscal year that voters approve the permanent base adjustment. Permanent base adjustments apply to all future years; however, voters may adopt additional adjustments.
Apache Junction voters are being asked to consider a Permanent Base Adjustment option on the August 28, 2018 ballot. This option would adjust the base dollar amount used under the state formula to calculate the City’s expenditure limitation.In 1979/80, the Arizona State Constitution imposed expenditure limitations on all cities and towns in Arizona based on their 1978 actual expenditures and population (with an allowance for inflation). This action by the State took effect the first fiscal year after Apache Junction incorporated establishing itself as a city. At that time, the expenditure limitation provided Apache Junction with the financial means to adequately serve the community’s needs during the city’s infancy stage.Like most cities and towns in the Phoenix metropolitan area, Apache Junction has seen significant growth since 1978. When the state-imposed formula was originally developed, Apache Junction had a population of less than 10,000. Today, Apache Junction more than 39,000 residents and is poised for more growth. The City now provides many services it did not provide in 1979, such as its many parks and recreation facilities and programs, library services and programs, a full-time police department, water treatment and distribution, municipal court system, new streets, sidewalks, and trails, as well as additional parks. As Apache Junction has grown, so too have revenues and operating costs. The City’s budget needs to grow in step with the community in order to maintain service levels and to plan for growth and improvements where
Approximately 87% of all Arizona cities and towns, including Apache Junction, operate under either a temporary or permanent alternative expenditure limitation. Every four years since 1983, Apache Junction voters have approved the temporary “Home Rule” Alternative Expenditure Limitation option. When compared to the “Home Rule” Alternative Expenditure Limitation, the Permanent Base Adjustment would save on administration and election costs every four years along with allowing the City Council to address future budget needs with an expenditure base that is in line with current revenue, population and inflation trends. It allows the City to spend the revenue it collects for programs it operates in a manner that adequately serves the needs of the community based on current financial conditions.
A “No” vote will set the City’s expenditure base at the 1979/80 level. The City currently budgets under the “Home Rule” option, as last approved by Apache Junction’s voters in 2016. If Proposition 423 is rejected, Home Rule would remain in effect until 2020, when another expenditure alternative would have to be taken to the voters or Apache Junction’s expenditure limitations would need to fall under 1979/1980 base expenditure limitation. This would represent a reduction of approximately 92% of the City’s total budget capacity and would result in significant cutbacks in city services such as public safety and public works operations, library and parks and recreation programs.
A “Yes” vote Proposition 423 will permanently adjust the City’s base expenditure amount (under the 1979/80 state formula) and allow the Apache Junction City Council to set City budgets based upon current financial conditions and service needs without having to ask voters to approve an alternative expenditure limitation every four years. It will not raise taxes. It simply allows the City to spend the revenue it collects on needed services and infrastructure projects such as General Government Services, Library, Community Development, Municipal Court, Public Safety, Parks & Recreation, Public Works, Capital Projects, Street Maintenance, and Water treatment and distribution.