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Gov. Jan Brewer vetoes religious property tax bill

PHOENIX — Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer has vetoed a bill that would have
expanded property tax exemptions for religious organizations, while also signing
another bill that blocks unemployment benefits for church workers.

Both measures were top priorities for conservatives during the 2013 legislative
session that ended Friday and had support from the influential Center for
Arizona Policy.

Brewer said in a veto letter Wednesday that the property tax bill was undefined
and could create more confusion. House Bill 2446 would have allowed churches to
avoid paying property taxes on vacant land, a practice already in place in
Maricopa County.

Property used for worship is currently tax-exempt.

Brewer also took action Wednesday on House Bill 2645, which exempts religious
organizations from providing unemployment benefits to teachers or child care


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