GPEC letter to Gov. Jan Brewer regarding SB 1062

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

February 21, 2014
 
 
The Honorable Janice K. Brewer
Governor, State of Arizona
1700 West Washington
Phoenix, AZ 85007
 
Re: Senate Bill 1062 (exercise of religion; state action.)
 
Dear Governor Brewer:
 
As the Chairman of the Board of Directors, and the President & CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic  Council (GPEC), we respectfully ask you to carefully consider a veto of Senate Bill 1062, exercise of  religion; state action. As a premiere regional economic development organization, GPEC consistently is  working in competitive markets to attract quality businesses looking to relocate and expand to the Greater  Phoenix region.
 
As written, Senate Bill 1062 claims to strengthen protections under Arizona law to defend against  religious discrimination. The reality is – this legislation will likely have profound, negative effects on our  business community for years to come.
 
The legislation places businesses currently in Arizona, as well as those looking to locate here, in
potentially damaging risk of litigation, and costly, needless legal disputes. The statutory changes within  Senate Bill 1062 will upset the current balance between the right of business owners to manage their  businesses, and the right of employees to refuse on religious grounds to follow company policy or  management directions.
 
Under your leadership as Governor, and work done on behalf of the Arizona Commerce Authority in  partnership with GPEC, Arizona has been witnessing a comeback. In order to maintain the great  momentum, we need to prevent any setbacks which further the agenda to tarnish the business friendly  reputation we have all worked so tirelessly to build.
 
With major events approaching in the coming year, including Super Bowl XLIX, Arizona will be the center  of the world’s stage. This legislation has the potential of subjecting the Super Bowl, and major events  surrounding it, to the threats of boycotts. In addition to the concerns with the growing negative attention  already being portrayed across both national and social media, we have already been contacted by four  companies we are working on with the Arizona Commerce Authority who will look to locate elsewhere if  this legislation is signed.
 
As Governor of Arizona, your steady hand has guided us out of the recession we experienced during the  last six years. You have shown political courage in the past to stand up to anti-business legislation such  as this bill. We ask that you do this one more time and respectfully request that you veto Senate Bill 1062.
 
With appreciation,
 
James H. Lundy Barry G. Broome
 
 
 
 
CEO President & CEO
Alliance Bank of Arizona Greater Phoenix Economic Council