The Arizona House of Representatives Tuesday gave preliminary approval to a bill setting up a new committee to oversee Pima County’s bond programs.
Voter-approved bonds allow a government to borrow money for projects such as road construction and land purchases. Taxpayers pay back the bond znd interest through an increased property tax.
Rep. Terri Proud, R-Tucson, is sponsoring the bill to set up a committee with a voting member from each jurisdiction in Pima County to approve bond programs. Fellow Tucson Republican Rep. Vic Williams wants to tweak the bill to make it to apply not just to Pima, but also to Maricopa County.
The bill still needs a final vote in the House before it can move to the Senate.
Pima County officials oppose the bill, saying the current system works well, is transparent and protects taxpayer interests. The county has a 25-member bond committee that decides on the size and scope of bond issue proposals, including the projects to be completed with the money.
County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry has said officials from the town of Marana are behind the move in the Legislature, because they are still upset with the county over a fight about control of waste water.