On Friday, January 13, Governor Hobbs released her FY24 Executive Budget recommendation. The $17.1 billion budget proposal includes $1.34B in new initiatives. While the Governor’s budget proposal reflects her priorities, the legislature crafts a budget that reflects theirs. Ultimately, a state budget is passed and signed into law by June 30, 2023. This will be the first time in 14 years that a budget will be negotiated between a Republican controlled legislature and a Democrat governor.
Governor Hobbs recommends $141 million in new funding for the entire public university system. This includes $40 million to the state’s Promise Scholarship Program. The program was established under Governor Ducey, and is currently funded at $20 million. The additional $40 million is expected to fund 10,000 more Arizona undergraduates. Additionally, the Governor recommends establishing a Promise for Dreamers scholarship program (DACA) which will provide financial aid for students who qualify for in-state tuition under the recently passed Prop 308. The Promise for Dreamers also received $40 million in this recommendation. Governor Hobbs requests continuing the FY23 appropriation for New Economy Initiative funding ($46M) into this fiscal year. To address the teacher shortage, the Arizona Teachers Academy was established by Governor Ducey. That program is expected to run a $15 million shortfall this year, but Governor Hobbs recommends continued funding in her budget proposal.
In addition to the new higher education funding, the Governor is proposing $32.4 million for community colleges and $273.7M in new K-12 investments.