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Some Lawmakers Not So Sure About Ducey's Plan To Continue Cutting Taxes

Corporate tax cuts enacted during the recession amid promises they would stimulate business growth are actually going to leave the state with a lot less money.

The 2011 law cut the state's corporate income tax from just shy of 7 percent to 5.5 percent now-- and 4.9 percent next year. It also allowed multi-state corporations to choose an alternate method of figuring out how much they owe the state.

Proponents said the cuts would convince more corporations to move here. But the report from the state's Finance Advisory Committee says by 2019, corporate tax collections will be just $298 million, less than half of what it would have been had the law not been altered.

The findings come as Gov. Doug Ducey, who campaigned on a promise of cutting taxes every year, wants to cut taxes again.

"I really believe whenever we can make our state a more attractive place to live, work and do business, we're doing good for our citizens and for our taxpayers. It's a commitment that I made and it's a commitment that I intend to keep," he said.

Draft budget proposals have penciled in $30 million for a tax cut. But Sen. Don Shooter, R-Yuma, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee said he's not sure it's such a good idea right now.

"I just think we need to calm down a little bit. I know that's not politically popular, certainly not as much as a tax cut. But the fact of the matter is, we're smart if we're conservative on both sides of the equation: Do not increase spending a great deal and do not diminish your revenue."

Budget talks continue this week behind closed doors.