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Auditor General Report Highlights DCS Failures, Sunset Review Committee Members Believe More Options Were Available

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, January 4, 2024                                                                                

Auditor General Report Highlights DCS Failures, Sunset Review Committee Members Believe More Options Were Available

PHOENIX, ARIZONA— Senator Justine Wadsack (R-17) and Representative Barbara Parker (R-10) are expressing their disappointment in the outcome of the Sunset Review of the Arizona Department of Child Safety during Wednesday’s hearing of the Senate and House Health & Human Services Committees of Reference.


The legislature has the obligation to reign in agencies which are found not to be in compliance of state law. The House and Senate are also required to periodically review state agencies and may take one of four actions: 1) continuation, 2) revision, 3) consolidation, or 4) termination. This review process typically occurs every 8-10 years, but Wednesday, the Committee voted to continue DCS for four years. Senator Wadsack and Representative Parker voted against the motion because it did not offer alternative solutions for more oversight.


“DCS has failed the last four special audits conducted by the Auditor General,” said Senator Wadsack. “This $1.2 billion agency is not following state law nor national standards. There are cases of child abuse, neglect, rape, trafficking, and even death within the agency, yet there’s no recourse for a parent if they suspect neglect or abuse of their child by a DCS employee. We’ve had crimes committed, but there have been zero consequences or accountability at the agency. How could I vote to allow this dysfunction to continue?”


“In the past few weeks, five children from foster homes in my legislative district alone went missing,” said Representative Parker. “One was found dead, and two others were found trafficked. You can’t trust an agency to make changes when children’s lives and well-being are at risk, you revise it. The legislature has broad powers to revise or correct agencies and has the duty to provide checks and balances to the executive branch. These hearings allow for several options of reform for an agency that’s failing to live up to its legal statutory responsibilities, and I believe we could have done more with that.”


“Furthermore, because of Governor Hobbs’ refusal to follow the law and submit state agency director nominations for Senate confirmation, any policies created by CEO David Lujan could be legally challenged,” said Representative Parker. “Hobbs doesn’t even have an agency that’s properly functioning, and this gives me grave concerns.”


Senator Wadsack and Representative Parker are encouraged by Senator Shope and Representative Montenegro’s efforts to increase oversight and accountability as chairmen of the Health and Human Services Committees, and vow to join them in working on legislation to address the heartbreaking issues within the Department of Child Safety.

Irresponsible and Reckless: Lukeville Closure Should Have Never Happened

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                            

Wednesday, January 3, 2024


Irresponsible and Reckless: Lukeville Closure

Should Have Never Happened


PHOENIX, ARIZONA— After an unprecedented and economically devastating month-long closure of the Lukeville Port of Entry, Senator T.J. Shope is demanding the Biden Administration never again take such a detrimental action against our citizens and secure our open border that’s endangering Arizona communities.


“This was an irresponsible and reckless move that should have never happened. Not only did this create financial turmoil for border communities within Arizona who rely on the tourism traffic to and from Rocky Point to support their families, but the closure of the Lukeville Port of Entry also put unnecessary stress and strain on our citizens and commerce who depend on a safe and direct route to this popular destination,” said Senator Shope.


“While I’m glad Lukeville is reopening on Thursday, the official statement from the federal government includes an absurd claim that ‘CBP will continue to prioritize our border security mission as necessary in response to this evolving situation,‘ which is a blatant lie. The American people aren’t dumb. Nothing has changed at the border to prompt the opening of Lukeville. Thousands of illegals, many of which are criminals and terrorists, continue to pour into our state on a daily basis, overwhelming our brave law enforcement personnel. This was purely a political move after Republican lawmakers put immense pressure on the Biden Administration to open this critical artery for commerce and legal traffic. I’m grateful for the support of Arizona’s Congressional Delegation who pressed Secretary Mayorkas to reverse this closure. I will continue to demand Joe Biden secure our border once and for all, and to never again resort to closing our ports of entry.”

For more information, contact: Kim Quintero, Director of Communications | Arizona State Senate Republican Caucus

Arizona Tax Rebate FAQ

Arizona Republicans Championed a

Tax Rebate That Took Effect Oct. 30th I got a letter saying I am eligible for the Arizona Families Tax Rebate? Is this a real?

Yes, it is real! This rebate is being issued pursuant to Senate Bill 1734, as passed by the fifty-sixth legislature, first regular session. Republicans from the House and Senate, over the objections of Governor Hobbs, supported allocating a portion of the State’s surplus towards a targeted tax rebate to Arizona families.

Why did Republicans support this proposal?

To help families struggling with the crippling effects of inflation. Gas, groceries, housing – all of these essentials have gone up over the past three years due to reckless federal policies coming out of Washington.

What is the rebate?

The rebate is a return of funds collected by the government to taxpayers. The rebate amount is $250 per dependent under age 17 and $100 per dependent over age 2017 as claimed on their 2021 returns. The law limits the rebate to three dependents, regardless of age, and caps the maximum amount of the rebate at $750 per taxpayer.

Who is eligible?

Eligible taxpayers include those who paid at least $1 of individual income tax on their 2021, 2020, or 2019 return and claimed Arizona’s dependent tax credit in 2021 on their Arizona resident individual income tax return.

Are the rebates subject to state income taxes?

No, the law specifies that the rebate is not subject to state income tax so you will not owe any state income tax.

Are the rebates subject to federal income tax?

Any such determination of federal taxability is made the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), not by the State of Arizona. However, the rebate was constructed to be consistent with other rebates that the IRS deemed non-taxable for 2022. The Arizona Department of Revenue has reached out to the IRS to obtain a federal taxability determination and this page will be updated accordingly once a response is received.

How will rebates be issued?

The Department of Revenue will issue a direct deposit to taxpayers who provided direct deposit information when they filed their 2021 and 2022 returns. If the Department does not have direct deposit information on file or if a direct deposit is not successfully processed, the Department will issue a paper check to the last known address. If neither is successful, you may file a claim using the Department’s online claim portal (

For more information, contact:

Kim Quintero

Director of Communications | Arizona State Senate Republican Caucus

President Warren Petersen Provides Update on Standing Committee Chairmanships


Thursday, September 28, 2023

President Warren Petersen Provides Update on Standing Committee Chairmanships for Fifty-sixth Legislature, Second Regular Session

PHOENIX, ARIZONA— In response to the resignation of Senator Steve Kaiser and the appointment of Senator Shawnna Bolick, President Warren Petersen is making changes to chairmanships and members of standing committees for the Fifty-sixth Legislature, Second Regular Session. Additionally, in an effort to improve efficiency and maximize member expertise in each committee, the Senate Committee on Commerce is being dissolved. Bills relating to this subject matter will be assigned to the remaining committees.

Committee on Appropriations

Chair- Senator John Kavanagh

Vice Chair- Senator Jake Hoffman

Committee on Education

Chair- Senator Ken Bennett

Vice Chair- Senator Justine Wadsack

(*Senator Bolick replaces Senator Kaiser as member*)

Committee on Elections

Chair- Senator Wendy Rogers

Vice Chair- Senator Ken Bennett

Committee on Director Nominations

Chair- Senator Jake Hoffman

Vice Chair- Senator Sine Kerr

Committee on Government

Chair- Senator Jake Hoffman

Vice Chair- Senator Wendy Rogers

Committee on Finance

Chair- Senator J.D. Mesnard

Vice Chair- Senator Shawnna Bolick

Committee on Health & Human Services

Chair- Senator T.J. Shope

Vice Chair- Senator Janae Shamp

Committee on Judiciary

Chair- Senator Anthony Kern

Vice Chair- Senator John Kavanagh

Committee on Military Affairs, Public Safety, Border Security

Chair- Senator David Gowan

Vice Chair- Senator David Farnsworth

Committee on Natural Resources, Energy, Water

Chair- Senator Sine Kerr

Vice Chair- Senator T.J. Shope

Committee on Transportation & Technology

Chair- Senator David Farnsworth

Vice Chair- Senator Frank Carroll

Committee on Rules

Chair- President Warren Petersen

Vice Chair- Senator Sonny Borrelli


For more information, contact:

Kim Quintero

Director of Communications | Arizona State Senate Republican Caucus