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Phoenix's Leading Local News: Weather, Traffic, Sports and more | Phoenix, Arizona | 12NEWS.com

Arizona uses federal COVID-19 money to reduce state spending

Congress didn't allow states to use CARES Act funds to directly replace state income lost from the pandemic.

PHOENIX — Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has funneled nearly $400 million of federal coronavirus relief funding to state agencies to help pay for operations, allowing them to return some of their original budget allocations to the state treasury.

Congress didn't allow states to use CARES Act funds to directly replace state income lost from the pandemic.

Ducey’s office says the move is prudent budgeting that will help Arizona avoid a severe fiscal crunch, but Jared Walczak of the Tax Foundation's Center for Tax Policy calls it's a “very aggressive interpretation" of federal rules.

Arizona was given nearly $4 billion to help curb the economic impact of the virus, and Ducey was given broad freedom to decide how about $1.9 billion of it would be allocated.

On Friday, the state reported 4,314 additional confirmed cases and 20 deaths.

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