PHOENIX, July 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Arizona Technology Council today released its 2012 "Vote TechSmart" guide, designed to give its members a comprehensive review of the Arizona legislative candidates' positions on the key issues affecting the members of the Arizona Technology Council and a better understanding of the Arizona legislative candidates who are running for political office in the 2012 Arizona election.
"We carefully craft this resource every two years to provide our members with information that reflects how the candidates stand on issues critical to protecting and advancing Arizona as a top-tier technology state," said Steven G. Zylstra, president and CEO of the Arizona Technology Council. "The upcoming election presents an opportunity to make our voice heard by electing candidates who have a strong and supportive view of the industry and understand the role technology plays in Arizona's economy."
The guide includes a report card that is based on incumbents' past support and voting records on technology-industry issues, along with the Council's endorsements based on track records, and/or responses from both a written survey and candidate interviews.
A candidate's understanding of the following issues important to the technology industry and the position they took on them were primary in the Council's support of a candidate: how to expand access to investment capital; tax code support of research and development (R&D) investments; technology-based economic development; support for technology infrastructure; and a strong commitment to a technology-based education system-from kindergarten through post-secondary.
The Arizona Technology Council's 2012 Arizona legislative candidate endorsements are:
Arizona State Senate:
District 1: Steve Pierce (R)
District 2: Linda Lopez (D)
District 3: None
District 4: Lynne Pancrazi (D)
District 5: Nancy McLain (R)
District 6: Chester Crandell (R)
District 7: Jack Jackson Jr (D)
District 8: None
District 9: None
District 10: Frank Antenori (R)
District 11: Al Melvin (R)
District 12: None
District 13: Don Shooter (R)
District 14: Gail Griffin (R)
District 15: Nancy Barto (R)
District 16: Rich Crandall (R)
District 17: Steve Yarbrough (R)
District 18: John McComish (R)
District 19: None
District 20: Kimberley Yee (R)
District 21: None
District 22: Judy Burges (R)
District 23: Michele Reagan (R)
District 24: Katie Hobbs (D)
District 25: None
District 26: Jerry Lewis (R)
District 27: None
District 28: Adam Driggs (R)
District 29: None
District 30: Robert Meza (D)
Arizona House of Representatives:
District 1: Karen Fann (R) and Andy Tobin (R)
District 2: None
District 3: Sally Ann Gonzales (D) Macario Saldate (D)
District 4: None
District 5: Doris Goodale (R)
District 6: Brenda Barton (R)
District 7: None
District 8: Frank Pratt (R), TJ Shope (R)
District 9: Ethan Orr (R), Victoria Steele (D)
District 10: Ted Vogt (R), Bruce Wheeler (D)
District 11: Steve Smith (R)
District 12: None
District 13: Russ Jones (R), Steve Montenegro (R)
District 14: David Gowan (R), David Stevens (R)
District 15: David Burnell Smith (R), Heather Carter (R)
District 16: Jeff Davis (R)
District 17: Tom Forese (R), JD Mesnard (R)
District 18: Jeff Dial (R), Bob Robson (R)
District 19: None
District 20: Paul Boyer (R)
District 21: Rick Gray (R), Debbie Lesko (R)
District 22: Phil Lovas (R)
District 23: John Kavanagh (R), Michele Ugenti (R)
District 24: Lela Alston (D), Chad Campbell (D), Brian Kaufman (R)
District 25: Justin Olson (R), Justin Pierce (R)
District 26: Jason Youn (R)
District 27: Ruben Gallego (D), Catherine Miranda (D)
District 28: Kate Brophy McGee (R), Eric Meyer (D), Amanda Reeve (R)
District 29: None
District 30: Debbie McCune Davis (D), Michael Snitz (D)
The Council chose to focus its guide on candidates that are running for the House and Senate in Arizona's 2012 election and is not making recommendations on other statewide races or those races for U.S. Congress.
As of the publication of Vote TechSmart, 10 ballot measures appear to be headed to the ballot. After reviewing all ten, the Public Policy Committee believes that two in particular deserve the support of the tech industry – Propositions 116 and 119. Both have a direct bearing on the technology industry.
Proposition 116: Known as the Small Business Job Creation Act. This measure would, according to Legislative Counsel, "allow the state to exempt from taxation the 'full cash value' of equipment and machinery or 'personal property' used...in a trade or business, up to an amount equal to the annual earnings of fifty workers." Currently, Arizona law exempts from taxation the first $50,000 of full cash value on equipment and machinery, with inflation adjustments capping that amount at $68,079. Prop 116 recognizes that taxing small businesses on the process of income generation is a millstone around the necks of risk-taking entrepreneurs. The Arizona Technology Council strongly recommends a yes vote.
Proposition 119: This is an effort to modify the management of state lands through changes to the Arizona constitution. Currently all Arizona state lands must be sold at auction to the "highest and best bidder." Prop 119 would allow Arizona government to exchange state lands for public lands when, "...The exchange...[is] in the best interest of the state land trust," and the purpose of the exchange is to preserve and protect military facilities in the state. Arizona's aerospace and defense industries are a huge part of the state's economy. These industries thrive in part because of the large military presence in Arizona. This measure would help protect these vital operations by allowing the state to exchange public lands for private lands that, if developed, could jeopardize the continued operations at these facilities. The Arizona Technology Council strongly recommends a yes vote on Prop 119.
About the Arizona Technology Council
The Arizona Technology Council is Arizona's premier trade association for science and technology companies. Recognized as having a diverse professional business community, Council members work toward furthering the advancement of technology in Arizona through leadership, education, legislation and social action. The Arizona Technology Council offers numerous events, educational forums and business conferences that bring together leaders, managers, employees and visionaries to make an impact on the technology industry. These interactions contribute to the Council's culture of growing member businesses and transforming technology in Arizona. To become a member or to learn more about the Arizona Technology Council, please visit http://www.aztechcouncil.org.
SOURCE Arizona Technology Council