Defiant no more, Arizona governor bends to teacher demands - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Defiant no more, Arizona governor bends to teacher demands

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By BOB CHRISTIE and MELISSA DANIELS
Associated Press

PHOENIX (AP) - As recently as Tuesday, a defiant Arizona governor said he was sticking with a 1 percent raise proposal.

By Thursday, Republican Doug Ducey managed to scrape $274 million from the cash-starved state's coffers and offer a 20 percent wage hike by 2020.

Democratic Rep. Rebecca Rios said she was amazed at what a threatened teacher strike in an election year can get the Republicans to do.

The teacher-led rebellion over low wages and funding cuts spread from its genesis in West Virginia to Arizona, Kentucky and Oklahoma.

Arizona teachers were cool to Ducey's announcement, saying they wanted details before reacting.

In addition to a 20 percent pay bump, educators also demanded pre-recession level funding and no more tax cuts until per pupil spending matches the national average.

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