Arizona Is Breaking Down Barriers In The Economy​

Governor's Office

March 29, 2017

Our state has taken number of steps to break down regulatory barriers and expand economic opportunities for Arizonans, especially our most vulnerable.

Since 2015, we’ve seen more than 100,000 private-sector jobs land in our state. The unemployment rate is at its lowest since 2008. Consumer confidence is up. And our credit ratings have been upgraded.

The improvements are making it easier for Arizonans to find, keep, and create good-paying jobs—and it isn’t an accident.

Over the past two years, we have:

  • Reduced duplicative licensing requirements for veterans
  • Eliminated and improved outdated regulations
  • Engaged the public to find hidden regulations
  • Embraced new technologies and ways of doing things

Here’s what else Arizona is doing to expand economic opportunities --

Cutting Outdated And Burdensome Regulations

Governor Ducey’s First Action In Office Was Implementing A Moratorium On Regulatory Rulemaking. “In his first official action, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey today issued an executive order implementing a moratorium on all new regulatory rulemaking by state agencies.” (“Governor Doug Ducey Issues Moratorium On Regulatory Rulemaking,” Office Of The Arizona Governor, 01/05/15)

“Our Small Businesses Have To Deal With All These Little Rules All The Time, Just Because They’re On The Books And Nobody’s Bothered To Change Them.” GOVERNOR DUCEY: “Our small businesses have to deal with all these little rules all the time, just because they’re on the books and nobody’s bothered to change them. . . . Wherever we find any regulation that is outdated, irrational, unfair, or destructive to free and honest enterprise in Arizona—that regulation will be gone.” (“State Of The State Address,” Office Of The Arizona Governor, 01/12/15)

March 2015: Arizona Passes Legislation To Cut Regulations For Craft Breweries In Our State. (Senate Bill 1030, Arizona State Legislature, Signed 03/31/15)

April 2015: Arizona Passes Legislation Empowering Small Businesses In Arizona To Raise Money Through Equity Crowd-Funding, Helping Entrepreneurs Raise The Capital They Need To Expand. (House Bill 2591, Arizona State Legislature, Signed 04/01/16)

April 2015: Arizona Passes Legislation Limiting Agency Rule-Making If It Would Increase Existing Regulation On Property Rights Or Business. (House Bill 2297, Arizona State Legislature, 04/10/15)

May 2016: Arizona Passes Legislation To Protect Job Creators From Excessive Regulations And Burdensome Licensing Requirements. (“Governor Doug Ducey Enacts Regulatory Reforms To Protect Job Creators & Small Businesses,” Office Of The Arizona Governor, 05/19/16)

May 2016: Arizona Passes First-Of-Its-Kind Legislation Opening The Doors To The Home-Sharing Economy, Fixing An Outdated, Unstable Regulatory Environment. (Senate Bill 1350, Arizona State Legislature, Signed 05/12/16)

January 2017: Governor Ducey Launches “Regulation Rollback,” An Online Service Soliciting Input From The Public About Which Old Regulations Still Need To Be Cut. (“Governor Ducey Announces RedTape AZ Gov,” Office Of The Arizona Governor, 01/09/17)

March 2017: Arizona Passes Legislation Reducing Duplicative Licensure Requirements For Veterans. (House Bill 2271, Arizona State Legislature, Signed 03/21/17)

March 2017: Governor Ducey Signs Executive Order Seeking New Information From State Boards And Commissions About Overly Burdensome Licensing Requirements. (“Governor Ducey Takes New Step Toward Reducing Licensing In Arizona,” Office Of The Arizona Governor, 03/29/17)

Attracting 21st Century Companies To Arizona

February 2015: Apple Announces That It Will Expand In Arizona, Investing In A $2 Billion Global Command Center. “Apple Inc. will establish a command center for its global data networks in Mesa, promising to invest $2 billion over 10 years at a facility where grand visions have fizzled twice before. The east Mesa center is expected to create 150 full-time Apple jobs and could generate up to 500 construction and trade jobs . . . As part of the deal, Apple is expected to build and finance solar projects that provide enough energy to power more than 14,000 Arizona homes.” (Mary Jo Pitzl and Ronald Hansen, and Parker Leavitt, “Apple Promises $2 Billion Command Center In Mesa,” Arizona Republic, 02/05/15)

CNBC: “One Of The Largest Investments [Apple] Has Ever Made.” “The tech giant said it would be one of the largest investments it has ever made. Apple has pledged to completely power the facility with renewable energy, building out solar projects in the process.” (Everett Rosenfeld, “Apple Announces $2B Global Command Center In Arizona,” CNBC, 02/02/15)

April 2016: Google Announces That It Will Expand Its Driverless-Car Program In Arizona—Only The 4th Place In The U.S. To Have One. “Governor Ducey and Google announced today the launch of driverless car testing in Arizona—the fourth place in the country to have the program.” (“Google Driverless Cars Coming To Arizona,” Office Of The Arizona Governor, 04/07/16)

May 2016: Yelp Announces That It Will Continue To Expand To Arizona. “Yelp, the San Francisco-based company known for its database of more than 100 million business reviews, expects to fill 75 new jobs in Scottsdale to support an expanding food-delivery service nationwide. . . . [T]he company appears to be moving more jobs outside of California so that lower-wage positions can escape the Bay Area's soaring cost of living.” (Parker Leavitt, “Yelp Expanding Food Delivery Service, Hiring In Scottsdale,” Arizona Republic, 05/11/16)

Arizona Republic: “Downtown Phoenix, Tempe And Scottsdale Are Buzzing With Entrepreneurs And New Companies In The Tech Space.” “In the 1980s and '90s, most of the tech jobs in metro Phoenix focused on back office and customer-care centers for companies with headquarters elsewhere, city officials said. Now, places like downtown Phoenix, Tempe and Scottsdale are buzzing with entrepreneurs and new companies in the tech space.” (Chloe Nordquist, “Phoenix Area Attracting West Coast Tech Companies,” Arizona Republic, 04/01/16)

Arizona’s Economy Is On The Rise

Arizona’s Unemployment Rate Is Currently The Lowest It’s Been Since 2008. (“Local Area Unemployment Statistics,” United States Department Of Labor, Accessed 03/28/17)

Over The Last Two Years, We’ve Seen More Than 100,000 Private-Sector Jobs Land In Our State. (Arizona Office Of Economic Opportunity, Accessed 03/28/17)

We Recovered All Of The Jobs We Lost During The Great Recession—Ahead Of Eight Other States. “Arizona formally matched its pre-recession employment levels in December, closing a job hole that lasted eight years and lingered 19 months longer than the nation's. . . . Only Nevada lost a greater share of its workers during the downturn than Arizona. Even so, Arizona has recovered faster than eight states.” (Ronald Hansen, “At Last, Arizona Recovers From Great Recession,” Arizona Republic, 03/25/16)

Phoenix Business Journal: “Arizona Quarter GDP Hits Record High; Beats U.S. GDP Growth.” “Arizona’s gross domestic product hit an all-time high in the first quarter, growing 23.4 percent since the darkest days of the Great Recession. The $296.6 billion GDP for Q1 2016 was a 3.5 percent gain over Q1 2015. The U.S. economy grew 3.3 percent over that same period. The state’s GDP was up 0.8 percent from Q4 2015, double the U.S. quarterly growth of 0.4 percent from the fourth quarter.” (Eric Jay Toll, “Arizona Quarter GDP Hits Record High; Beats U.S. GDP Growth,” Phoenix Business Journal, 11/22/16)

Arizona’s GDP Growth In The First Quarter Of 2016 Outpaced 43 Other States. (“Gross Domestic Product By State: First Quarter 2016,” Bureau Of Economic Analysis, 07/27/16)

Our GDP Growth In The Second Quarter Of 2016 Was The Third-Best In The United States. “Arizona had the third highest increase in real gross domestic product in the U.S. in the second quarter. Arizona’s 3.3 percent increase over the same period in 2015 was also higher than the national average. The state’s GDP was just shy of $300 billion for the quarter, compared to $290 billion a year ago.” (Eric Jay Toll, “Arizona GDP Growth Third Best In US, Topping National GDP Again,” Phoenix Business Journal, 12/07/16)

Moody’s Investors Services Upgraded Arizona’s Credit Rating. “Moody's Investors Service has raised the State of Arizona's Issuer Rating to Aa2 from Aa3. . . . The upgrade of the state's issuer rating to Aa2 reflects the state's positive economic trends, significantly improved liquidity levels, budget actions expected to eliminate a structural imbalance resulting from the expiration of a temporary sales tax enacted during the recession, and below average debt and pension liabilities.” (“Moody’s Upgrades Arizona’s Issuer Rating To Aa2 From Aa3; Outlook Stable,” Moody’s Investors Service, 05/04/15)

Standard & Poor’s Upgraded Arizona’s Credit Rating. “Arizona has received a second financial upgrade from Wall Street, with Standard & Poor's Ratings Services raising its general evaluation of state-government debt to AA from AA-. Standard & Poor's also raised its grade for bond investments known as certificates of participation issued by Arizona, to AA- from A+.” (Russ Wiles, “Arizona Receives Second Credit-Rating Upgrade,” Arizona Republic, 05/20/15)

Consumer Confidence Is Increasing. According to a recent poll conducted by the Behavior Research Center (BRC), Arizona consumer confidence climbed to 88.4 in June 2016. Confidence of Arizona consumers reached an historic low in January 2009 at 44.2, and has not been this close to 90.0 since July 2007. (“Good News: Arizona Consumer Confidence Reaches Highest Level Since July 2007,” Behavior Research Center, 07/06/16)

In January 2017, The Arizona Republic Reported That Arizona Is Poised For Even Higher Growth This Year. “That's the summary view from BMO Capital Markets Economics, which in a new report sees Arizona's economy growing 2.6 percent this year compared with 2.4 percent for the U.S. as a whole. . . . The report estimates Arizona's economy grew 2.2 percent in 2016, surpassing estimated U.S. growth of 1.6 percent. Nationally, consumer spending and housing fundamentals remain strong, with business investment poised to improve, the report said.” (Russ Wiles, “Arizona Economy Set For Higher Growth In 2017,” Arizona Republic, 01/28/17)