Gov. Doug Ducey appears to have solved one of the hairiest problems in Arizona politics: How to give more money to teachers—without raising taxes—and settle a long-standing billion-dollar lawsuit filed against the Grand Canyon state by its own school districts. Mr. Ducey, a former CEO of Cold Stone Creamery, apparently knows how to wheel and deal.
Arizona ranks near the bottom of states by total per-pupil funding for K-12 education. Voters tried to fix the problem in 2000 in the usual way: by throwing money at it. They approved a referendum to raise the state sales tax to 5.6% from 5%, with all of this new revenue to be reserved for education. The measure was designed to ensure that school funding kept pace with inflation. The language required the legislature to annually raise the base-level school funding or increase other educated-related expenditures.