Leading Arizona Business Owner And Retired Judge Challenge Proposition 208. Lawsuit Insists The Tax Hike Violates the Arizona Constitution On Multiple Fronts

(SCOTTSDALE, AZ.) Litigation has been filed challenging the largest income tax hike in Arizona history. The lawsuit was filed by Scottsdale’s Rose Law Group on behalf of Ann Siner, CEO and Founder of My Sister’s Closet, and retired Maricopa County Superior Court Judge John Buttrick.

The litigation was filed after the vote was canvassed. The lawsuit does not challenge the election but rather the legality of Proposition 208. The Arizona Constitution says the power to tax and spend state funds rests with the Legislature. Prop 208 bypasses Arizona’s elected leaders and gives the power to spend the funds to unelected bureaucrats with no oversight.

In addition to violating the rights of Arizona taxpayers, the tax hike puts the state’s economy in jeopardy.

Siner said. “Business owners are already suffering greatly because of COVID. Many are closing. Prop 208 will simply cause more businesses and their owners to leave Arizona. In the long run that’s bad for the economy and bad for school funding. I am all for getting more money to schools. But 208 is not the cure. It’s bad medicine that will shrink our economy and hurt school funding in the long run.”

Judge Buttrick said, “The Arizona Constitution was written to prevent the sort of overreach demonstrated by Prop 208.  It fundamentally upends the way Arizonans are taxed and sets a dangerous precedent for the future.”

The lawsuit alleges multiple flaws in Prop 208 that violate existing Arizona law and the Arizona Constitution.

  • Proposition 208’s statutory provisions conflict with the Arizona Constitution
  • Proposition 208 is an unconstitutional removal of the Legislature’s power to tax
  • The Arizona Constitution says a super majority of the Legislature is required to increase taxes
  • The Arizona Constitution requires that the Legislature’s power of taxation shall never be surrendered, suspended, or contracted away
  • The Legislature’s core powers can’t be delegated
  • Proposition 208 violates the Constitution by prohibiting the Legislature from adjusting educational funding
  • Proposition 208 improperly tries to supersede the Arizona Constitution
  • Such a fundamental shift in the way Arizonans are taxed would require a change in the Arizona constitution.
  • This is an unconstitutional attempt to limit legislative’s power.
  • The Legislature has no authority over how Prop 208 funds are spent.

Ms. Siner said, “I am grateful for the outpouring of support since I announced my involvement in this important effort.  I have received so many calls and emails thanking me for trying to do the right thing and I am so appreciative.  While I am donating to the funding of this effort and Rose Law Group is matching any donations received, people who want to help support a robust litigation can donate to help pay for these efforts at https://secure.lawpay.com/pages/roselawgroup/trust. (Enter “208” on the invoice line).   I think we owe it to the future of Arizona to fight this in court. ”

Rose Law Group President Jordan Rose said in conjunction with firm lawyers David McDowell, Logan Elia, Thomas Galvin, Audra Petrolle, “Our goal is to defend the Arizona Constitution and the rule of law. Proposition 208 is an unconstitutional end run around the Arizona Constitution and the State Legislature. We hope to stop this unconstitutional tax hike which will increase unemployment rates, and send many Arizona businesses packing. We can all agree schools need more funding but wrecking the state economy with an unconstitutional tax hike is not the way to do it.”

To learn more about the litigation and efforts to fund it click here.