Arizona Government Spends:
$26,300,000,000 per year
$2,233,785,600 per month
$72,057,600 per day
$3,002,400 per hour
$50,040 per minute
$834 per second
$4,511 per person*
$11,933 per household*
*Based on latest U.S. Census numbers
PHOENIX-How much money did you spend over the July 4 weekend? The Arizona government spent more than $72 million per day.
The Arizona Spending Watch clocks how quickly state government spends taxpayer money and is a joint project of the Goldwater Institute and the Arizona Free Enterprise Club. The clock can be viewed on both organization's websites.
State government will spend over $26 billion in fiscal year 2007, which began July 1. When the new budget kicked in at midnight Saturday, the state started spending $834 per second, up last year from $742. The general fund alone grew 19% over the 2006 budget. To put that increase in perspective, consider that Arizona's population grew just over three percent last year.
"In two minutes, the state government has spent enough to buy a fully loaded Cadillac Escalade," said Darcy Olsen, president of the Goldwater Institute.
Because of the way Arizona's budget is designed, all spending is automatically added to the next year's budget. And even if legislators do not appropriate another penny or adopt a single new program, automatic spending mechanisms add another $600 to $700 million to the budget every year.
At this rate Arizona will spend an estimated $40 billion a year by 2012.
Steve Voeller, president of the Arizona Free Enterprise Club said, "This budget clock actually tells time. Right now it says it's time for Arizona to get control of its spending."
One way to regain control of state spending is to require legislators to keep spending increases in line with increases in population and inflation. Any revenue taken in above that limit would go back to the people. If a spending limit were in place for the coming five years, a family of four could save $4,000 to $5,000 in taxes.
Starlee Rhoades, Goldwater Institute director of communications, (602) 462-5000 x 226.
Steve Voeller, Arizona Free Enterprise Club president, (602) 346-5061.