Sen. Melvin: Thoughts on golfer Phil Mickelson considering leaving California over taxes

By Sen. Al Melvin

January 22, 2013 - 3:04 pm
State Sen. Al Melvin, R-Tucson

Over the weekend, golf legend Phil Mickelson told reporters ‘drastic changes’ are ahead for him because of high taxes in his home state of California. In November, voters there raised the state sales tax and increased taxes on high-achievers. Mickelson estimated he is now paying more than 60 percent of his income in taxes.

California is irresponsibly raising taxes during a slow economy. California firms are considering moving to Arizona because of our business-friendly economy. We stand with open arms to welcome them.

It is also true with individuals such as Phil Mickelson. Phil went to ASU, and he lived in Scottsdale before moving to California. I say it’s time for Lefty to grab his golf bag and return to Arizona.

The differences between the two states are stark. Arizona’s top income tax rate is 4.54 percent. California’s is now 13.3 percent. That translates to $87,600 more in taxes in California for every $1 million earned.

As chairman of the Arizona Senate Commerce, Energy and Military Committee, I want to do everything I can to help the private sector create jobs for our people. Many people in our state make their living in our golf and tourism industries. With Phil Mickelson, we can make those parts of our state’s economy even more successful. We will treat him right, including taxes. We want everyone to thrive and prosper here.

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