/ Modified mar 28, 2023 9:02 p.m.

Hobbs vetoes the ban on sales tax for food

Hobbs said she believed the bill wouldn’t eliminate costs passed onto consumers.

360 cap dome 2021 A view of the dome atop the Arizona Capitol Museum at the State Capitol in Phoenix. January 2021.
AZPM Staff

Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs vetoed a food tax bill Tuesday that would have prevented cities and municipalities from taxing groceries.

In a letter sent to the Legislature, Hobbs said she believed the bill wouldn’t eliminate costs passed onto consumers and instead shift the responsibility to the state.

“The bill, originally unveiled as a way to mitigate inflation, does not take effect for more than two years,” Hobbs wrote. “What’s more, it does nothing for the more than 800,000 Arizonans who use SNAP and WIC benefits for their groceries, as these constituents are already exempt from the tax.”

Senate Republicans said the bill would have put more money back in the pockets of Arizonans while the cost of living remains historically high.

Senate Majority Leader Sonny Borrelli, who sponsored the bill, said “we’re not only paying inflated prices to feed our families, but we’re also paying more in taxes as the cost of food rises... A tax on our groceries is regressive and hurts everyone.”

Hobbs also vetoed a bill that would have prohibited government agencies from contracting with firms that refuse to do business with companies that make firearms.

“The bill is unnecessary and, if enacted, could result in banks leaving Arizona,” Hobbs said. “This would limit competition and increase costs for local governments — costs which ultimately fall on taxpayers.”

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