Jan 8, 2024 - Politics

3 things to watch for in Gov. Hobbs' State of the State address

A woman standing at a podium and in front of the American flag.

Gov. Katie Hobbs in September. Photo: Caitlin O'Hara/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Gov. Katie Hobbs is expected to reveal her full legislative plan during her State of the State address Monday, and her executive budget proposal will follow on Friday.

In the meantime, here are a few big items we're expecting her to tackle this session:

Water: Hobbs at an Arizona Chamber luncheon last week said she expects water to be the major issue at the Legislature this year.

Border security: The governor also told business leaders she plans to work with the Legislature on border security this session.

ESA reform: Last week, Hobbs announced a plan to rein in the state's universal school voucher plan, which has already exceeded its budget by $40 million halfway through the fiscal year. This is a departure from her stance last year, when she called for the repeal of the program altogether.

  • The new plan, which would require legislative approval, calls for instructor fingerprint background checks, more financial documentation and other accountability measures.
  • Reality check: House Speaker Ben Toma said last week Republicans would not allow bills that "strangle ESAs and private education with bureaucracy and regulation" to move forward.

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