Gov. Ducey signs key education bills proving he is committed to ensuring every Arizona Student has options
PHOENIX (Arpil 13, 2015) — The American Federation for Children, the nation’s voice for educational choice, praises Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey for signing key education bills which improve both the corporate and the public school tax credit programs as well as the Empowerment Scholarship Account program.
On Friday, the Governor signed HB2153 into law expanding the Corporate Tuition Tax Credit program to include donations from small corporations. Earlier in the week, Gov. Ducey signed other key education bills:
- HB2153 gives parity to S-Corps allowing them to donate to private school scholarship funds for low-income children
- HB2483 requires School Tuition Organizations to post charitable dollars given to low-income students for private school scholarships
- SB1332 creates automatic eligibility for children living on tribal lands who are seeking an Empowerment Scholarship Account
“We are very thankful to Gov. Ducey who showed his commitment to improving the educational outcomes for all students in Arizona,” said Kevin Chavous, American Federation for Children executive counsel. “The Governor signed bills that benefit students attending public and private schools. He also stepped up to help the children living on the rural tribal lands who are so often ignored. It’s encouraging to see Gov. Ducey take swift action to provide all students with more opportunity.”
HB2153, sponsored by Rep. Justin Olson, allows small businesses (S-Corps) to receive a tax credit for donations to the state’s Corporate Tuition Tax Credit program which provides low-income children with private school scholarships. Previously, only large corporations were allowed to participate in this program.
HB2483, sponsored by Rep. David Livingston, requires STOs to report on their websites the amount of money awarded to low-income families through private school scholarships. This transparency allows corporate donors to see which school tuition organizations (STOs) are helping disadvantaged children and how much money they are actually giving in low-income based scholarships. The new law also extends an important deadline for public school funding. The new donation deadline for the Arizona Public School Tax Credit is now April 15 each year, allowing more time for taxpayers and public schools to take advantage of this option.
SB1332, sponsored by Sen. Carlyle Begay, was also signed into law by Gov. Ducey last week. The new law opens up eligibility for the Empowerment Scholarship Account program for all children living on one of the state’s 22 reservations. Previously, there have been very few educational options on rural tribal lands so the new law gives Native American parents the means to customize their child’s education by choosing from several options including online curriculum, private school and homeschooling.