State, counties, Southwest Gas reach settlement over taxes

SAFFORD — In a housekeeping matter, the Graham County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Monday to ratify for a second time a settlement agreement between the Arizona Attorney General’s Office and Southwest Gas.

The utility provider had sued the state’s 15 counties over their property tax assessments in years 2022 and 2023. The second vote takes into account one more year.

“Basically, in addition to years 2022 and ’23, they added year ’24 to settlement,” said County Manager Dustin Welker, “which will be a good thing and eliminate litigating another year of this tax case.”

In addition to another year, the new settlement increases Southwest Gas’ payments statewide from $2.3 billion for 2022 to $2.5 billion, $2.5 billion to $2.55 billion for 2023, and $3 billion for 2024.

“It looks like the AG’s Office did a very good job,” Welker said.