Arizona voters decide fate of one cent sales tax increase

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-See the ELECTION RESULTS for Marcopa County


PHOENIX (AP) -- Arizona voters have approved a temporary sales tax increase to help close the state's projected big budget shortfalls.

With hundreds of thousands of early ballots counted and 49 percent of polling places reporting on Tuesday evening, the vote on Proposition 100 was 561,024 for the measure and just 312,708 opposed. That's 64.2 percent in favor and 35.8 percent against.

The increase will take effect June 1, raising the current state sales tax of 5.6 cents on the dollar to 6.6 cents for three years and raising a projected $918 million in the first year.

A defeat for Proposition 100 would have triggered $862 million of budget cuts for schools and other programs.
Those contingency cuts were included in the budget approved by the Legislature in March.

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