Triadvocates Navigator: January 9, 2023

January 09,2023 | TRIADVOCATES

January 9, 2023

This afternoon, Governor Katie Hobbs delivered her first State of the State address to a joint session of the House and Senate, marking the first time in 14 years since the Legislature convened under a Democratic governor. With Republicans maintaining control of both chambers, we will be navigating a divided government—and if today was any indication of what’s to come, we’re in for a rough legislative session. During the State of the State address, two Republican senators stood and turned their backs to the governor, while a handful of conservative lawmakers walked out of the chamber when Governor Hobbs pledged to defend abortion rights.

Despite the walkout, the governor finished her 42-minute speech, in which she laid out her priorities for the upcoming session: education, housing and water.

Here’s an overview of her goals for the year ahead (in her own words):


  • Address the archaic spending cap, saving Arizona’s schools from a forced $1.3 billion budget cut due to the outdated Aggregate Expenditure Limit
  • Remedy the irresponsible, massive expansion of school vouchers by truly investing in public schools, teachers and students
  • Launch an Educator Retention Task Force to retain more teachers, develop a thorough framework and make recommendations to improve class sizes, resources, working conditions, and other factors.
  • Pump the brakes on the costly and wasteful lawsuit over school facility funding, putting the focus back on solving problems and educating students
  • Distribute per-pupil funding to base support level for schools, removing the misguided funding based on letter grades
  • Expand mental health resources by hiring additional social workers and counselors in schools
  • Invest in community colleges and dual-enrollment programs so no matter where a student lives, they have the opportunity to earn college credit or get a good-paying job
  • Expand the capacity of the Arizona Promise Scholarship Program and create the Promise for DREAMers Scholarship Program to cover all students, regardless of immigration status, who attend a public university


Affordable Housing

  • Invest $150 million into the Housing Trust Fund
  • Encourage affordable housing strategies among builders, the public sector and communities


Lowering Costs

  • Establish a state-level, child tax credit for families earning less than $40,000 a year
  • Exempt key items including diapers and feminine hygiene products from the state sales tax



  • Support sheriffs, local law enforcement, community resources and hospitals
  • Push Congress to do its job and pass comprehensive immigration reform
  • Invited Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to visit the border and meet with community leaders, sheriffs, non-profit representatives, and business executives in impacted communities who all want effective and humane solutions to this longtime challenge


Women’s Rights

  • Match federal Title X funding to double the program’s impact in the state and increase access to family planning resources for low-income women
  • Protect reproductive freedom for all Arizonans



  • Establish the Governor’s Office of Resiliency, which will focus on water, energy and land use solutions through a collaborative approach among state agencies, tribal governments, universities and community organizations
  • Modernize the Arizona Groundwater Management Act, updating the state’s management tools and protecting groundwater supplies
  • Ensure Arizona’s groundwater supports residents and close water poaching loopholes that have enabled foreign business interests to pump local groundwater
  • Support rural communities in managing groundwater and strike a balance between usage and recharging aquifers



For the full transcript of the governor’s remarks, click here.


Keep an eye out for another special edition of The Navigator later this week—we’ll provide our analysis of the governor’s spending plan when she releases her Executive Budget proposal on Friday.

Governor Hobbs has built her team (for the most part) on the Ninth Floor and has announced her cabinet picks. We’ve put together a full rundown of key players that you can download by clicking here.


We’ve also put together an overview of legislative leadership, committee assignments and deadlines. To download the document, click here.

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