FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Lisa Rigler
SMALL BUSINESS ALLIANCE ENDORSES STATE & CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATES
THE SMALL BUSINESS ALLIANCE IS PROUD TO BE PASSIONATE ADVOCATES FOR A PROFITABLE SMALL BUSINESS COMMUNITY.
Arizona (June 25, 2012)…The Small Business Alliance announces its endorsement for selected 2012 Arizona Legislative elections and U.S. Congressional District 5.
There is a fantastic slate of candidates running for elected office in the Southeast Valley. The Small Business Alliance with more than 600 members has taken a close look at them. Their state & federal election committee comprised of local small business owners put the candidates for selected races through an intense endorsement process. After much study and deliberation, the committee announces the following endorsed candidates:
The SBA endorses:
For State Representative:
District 12: Eddie Farnsworth and Warren Peterson.
Eddie Farnsworth has strong convictions on property rights and extensive business experience. Warren Petersen adds fresh ideas and an energetic approach to addressing the issues.
District 17: J.D. Mesnard.
Always the first to roll up his sleeves and take action when a small business needs his help; J.D. Mesnard is fair and conscientious when it comes to business policy that supports free enterprise principles.
For State Senate:
District 12: Andy Biggs.
Andy Biggs is always willing to meet with his constituents and he is incredibly knowledgeable on the issues.
District 16: John Fillmore.
John Fillmore is a passionate grassroots businessman just like the members of the Small Business Alliance.
District 17: Steve Yarbrough.
Steve Yarbrough has never ending knowledge coupled with an uncanny ability to communicate and explain complex issues to his constituents.
District 25: Russell Pearce.
Known for a strong candid approach, Russell Pearce also brings extensive knowledge and a willingness to listen to business concerns and discuss every position and issue.
For U.S. Congress:
District 5: Matt Salmon.
Experienced and with a well reasoned position on each of the issues, Matt Salmon possesses a strong action-oriented work ethic and a rock solid voting record in favor of small business interests.
The candidates endorsed by the Small Business Alliance are committed to fostering the best small business environment possible and exhibit their own unique skills and strengths. Candidates participated in a process that included a written biography, written questionnaire, videotaped in person interview with the panel, and a candidate forum where the candidates shared their platforms with members of the Small Business Alliance and the community. The members and public also weighed in on the process through their participation in a straw poll vote.
Answers to the questionnaires and videos of the candidate’s interviews are currently being uploaded to the Small Business Alliance website: www.evsba.com and the public are encouraged to look there on the “Statesmen’s Tour” page for information on the candidates running for office by clicking their names.
The Small Business Alliance is founded by small business owners. We are united by our passion to empower, to advocate, and to build the success of small businesses.
- Our Mission: Be a passionate advocate for a profitable small business community.
We are a registered non-profit corporation.
Visit the Small Business Alliance’s website at www.EVSBA.com. You can reach the Small Business Alliance at 480-478-1126 for more information.
Upgraded bond ratings on about $136 million of Gilbert's municipal debt reflect the town's prudent financial planning and an improving local economy and could save taxpayers money, officials say.
Standard & Poor's Rating Services' recent elevation of bond ratings on debt used to pay for streets, utilities and other public facilities in Gilbert will help reduce the town's cost for service going forward, according to town officials.
Gilbert recently sold about $17 million in bonds to refinance existing debt in a move that will save taxpayers more than $1 million, officials said. In conjunction with the sale, S&P upgraded the town's "street and highway user revenue debt" rating to "AA" from "AA-".
The credit-rating agency also elevated its rating on $118.9 million in public facilities bonds, from "A+" to "AA-."
"Bond ratings have a very direct impact on the costs of providing services and secure us lower interest rates, making our capital projects ... cost less," town Manager Patrick Banger said in a press release.
Unlike the national government, municipal debt typically does not pay for day-to-day operations, according to the Arizona League of Cities and Towns. Nearly all local debt is long-term and payments are predictable, the league says.
Credit agencies take a variety of factors into account when issuing a rating, including demographics, which are favorable in Gilbert, officials have said.
The median household income in Gilbert is about $80,000, and nearly 40 percent of residents have at least a bachelor's degree, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics. Both figures are well above the national average.
Although service on the Gilbert Town Council gives elected officials access to public-sector benefits such as a pension program, health care and allowances, members vary in which perks they pick.
Participation in the state's retirement system is mandatory, but council members can opt in or out of other benefits, including medical and dental coverage. Elected officials can also accept or refuse a town-issued iPad, $100 monthly communication allowance and a vehicle allowance.
Early campaign-finance reports for state Legislature candidates in Gilbert's District 22 show three incumbents received heavy support from political-action committees and out-of-district donors, while lone Warren Petersen received the most grass-roots support.
The reports were due Tuesday and covered a 13-month period, from Nov. 23, 2010, to Dec. 31, 2011.
During that time, the four candidates raised a combined $34,000 from individuals and political-action committees.
With more than 1,000 bills expected to come through the state Legislature in the upcoming session, the Gilbert Town Council directed officials to negotiate a new contract for outside lobbying services.
Gilbert has contracted with Phoenix-based Barnes & Associates for about 10 years and paid the firm $42,000 in 2011, according to a town report.
The current contract expires Jan. 10, one day after the legislative session begins.
A solid boost in sales-tax revenue, driven by more consumer spending, is providing Valley municipalities with much-needed relief for budgets that took a hard hit during the recession.
Nearly every major city in the Valley enjoyed a significant jump in sales-tax collections during the first eight months of 2011, a welcome message after three consecutive years of stagnation and decline.
Phoenix, which added a food tax in April 2010, has seen its overall sales-tax figures climb 16.4 percent year-over-year, through September. Retail activity was up 8.6 percent and restaurant collections increased 11.6 percent.
By the numbers
In many Valley cities, sales-tax revenue during the first eight months of 2011 increased significantly over the same period a year earlier . Here's how some communities compare:
2011 - $268,049,000.
2010 - $230,373,000.
Percentage change - 16.4 percent.
2011 - $81,361,090.
2010 - $79,612,625.
Percentage change - 2.2 percent.
2011 - $90,916,678.
2010 - $84,433,739.
Percentage change - 7.7 percent.
2011 - $66,676,003.
2010 - $60,944,348.
Percentage change - 9.4 percent.
2011 - $59,138,279.
2010 - $55,375,766.
Percentage change - 6.8 percent.
2011 - $40,111,631.
2010 - $37,718,610.
Percentage change - 6.3 percent.
2011 - $33,347,070.
2010 - $31,944,343.
Percentage change - 4.4 percent.
2011 - $22,628,713.
2010 - $21,362,263.
Percentage change - 5.9 percent.