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PHOENIX -- For the past several months the Greater Phoenix Economic Council has done its best to lure California businesses to Arizona.

Now Texas is trying to steal the group's thunder or at least cut into the action.

Texas is airing radio ads in California to convince companies there to relocate to the Lone Star State and Gov. Rick Perry is courting companies in person.

GPEC has offered free plane rides and hotel stays to the top 100 California CEOs to look at relocating to Arizona after California voters passed a $6 billion dollar tax hike that effects mainly higher-income earners. GPEC said it has 24 solid leads.

Barry Broome heads up GPEC and said Arizona is more than competitive with Texas as far as business climate.

"The cost of the living and real estate is lower here and we're closer to California.

GPEC's campaign has led to a war of words between Broome and California Gov. Jerry Brown, leading to Barry vs. Jerry and now Barry vs. Perry.

"Our universities are as good or better. Arizona State performs better than the University of Texas and University of Arizona outperforms Texas A&M," Broome said.

The Arizona Commerce Authority recently opened offices in California to pitch businesses full-time.

Jim Cross, Reporter

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