Conservative View of the California Ballot Initiatives – 2010

Free advice is worth exactly what you paid for it!  That said, here is my free advice for 2010 California Ballot Initiatives:  Ballot descriptions were “borrowed” from CalTax.Org1.  You should take the time to read their analysis for another perspective.  On a personal note, as an ex-mayor, I hated ballot initiatives.  It was an indictment of all elected officials that we were not doing our jobs.

 

Scene of the Crime

Proposition 19:          NO

I oppose this mainly because I don’t think there are enough clear-headed thinkers around today as it is.  Adding pot to the mix may help alleviate some of the pain inflicted on hard-working  tax payers in California or allow them to somewhat tolerate the buffoons in Washington but I think we should try to keep alert so we know how bad we are being screwed by Sacramento and Washington.  Everyone who wants Marijuana now can get it anyway.  This would only be a feel good law.  This is just another way to tax the Jim Morison wanabees…

Authorizes Local Government to Legalize, Tax and Regulate Marijuana. Legalizes the possession, transportation, cultivation and use of marijuana by any person age 21 or older, with specified limitations, and authorizes local governments to regulate and tax marijuana.

Proposition 20:          YES

We should not have to go to the extreme of having an initiative to tell the state legislature and the governor that they suck and we can’t trust them to perform their constitutional duty.  Why did we elect them in the first place?  Because they do suck and we can’t trust them, vote “Yes on 20”; then vote for whoever is running against the incumbent on your ballot.

Independent Redistricting for Congressional Districts. Eliminates a glaring conflict of interest in the redistricting process by ensuring that elected officials will no longer have the power to draw the lines for congressional districts. This measure authorizes a non-partisan, independent commission to draw congressional district lines.

Proposition 21:          NO

This will give this State Government an additional $500M to blow on maybe our Parks.  But, you get a “free” “State Park Access Pass” with every car registration renewal (just for that car).  When was the last time you were in a state park?  Do you go to state parks often?  This money will end up in the general fund and the legislature will end up spending on another worthless program that they devise.

Car Tax Increase. An example of ballot-box budgeting, this measure increases the car tax – misleadingly described as a “fee” in the initiative – to raise additional money for the state park system.

Proposition 22:  YES

Anytime you see a way to force the State to send the Cities’ and Counties’ tax revenues back to the cities and states, vote for it.  If the state keeps the money, they will blow it anyway.  At least if it goes back to your City or County, you can yell at someone locally when they blow it.  The State of California are not exactly trustworthy partners of local governments.

Restricts State Use of Local Funds. Prohibits the Legislature from borrowing, transferring, shifting, or reallocating gas tax, property tax and car tax revenues that are intended for local government purposes. Repeals Proposition 1a of 2004.

Proposition 23:   YES, Yes, Yes

In 2006 the legislature passed AB32 which should have been named “Al Gore’s Revenge”.  It assumes that there is global warming and CARB (California Air Resources Board) is the only Government Body who can Solve the Problem.  CARB could not even add up diesel fuel purchases and come up with the total diesel fuel used in 2009.  They overestimated usage by 340%!  The only problem with Prop 23 is that it should demand the dissolution of CARB!

Suspends Global Warming Legislation. Delays implementation of the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 until California’s unemployment is reduced to 5.5 percent or lower for four consecutive quarters.

Proposition 24:  NO

This is a $1.7B tax increase on businesses in California to help them to make sure they decide to leave the State and take their jobs elsewhere.  Are these people even close to sane?  We are #3 when it comes to unemployment in the “suck big time” category when rated against other states as being business friendly.

Imposes a Tax on California Jobs and Creates Incentive to Move Jobs to Other States. Calls for tax increases totaling more than $1.7 billion per year, and specifically taxes jobs located within California – thus providing an incentive for employers to move jobs out of the state.

Proposition 25:          NO

This one is disguised behind “Punishing or Legislature” for not passing a budget on time.  It says they won’t get paid if the budget until the budget is passed.  How about, if you don’t pass budgets on time, we will vote you out every single time!  What it really does is to make it easier on the legislature to  RAISE taxes.  Instead of needing 66% of their peers to vote for increases Prop 25 will require only a simple majority.

Increases Likelihood of Tax Increases, Effectively Eliminates Public’s Right to Referendum. Makes tax increases more likely by lowering the vote threshold for the Legislature to approve the budget, and by allowing the Legislature to approve tax increases with a bare majority vote if included in a budget appropriations bill. Also takes away voters’ right to use the referendum process to stop taxes that are disguised as “fees” and other bad legislation.

Proposition 26:          YES

Today, State and Local governments use “Fees” to get around tougher 66% votes to approve tax increases.  FEES ARE TAXES AND SHOULD BE AS HARD TO RAISE AS TAXES.  I know that does not make sense but this is politics.  IF SOMEONE HAS TO GIVE A GOVERNMENT ENTITY ONE RED CENT, TO DO ANYTHING, FOR ANYTHING, OR FOR NOTHING AT ALL, THEN IT IS A TAX.  That should be our new definition of TAX.

Stops State and Local Governments From Enacting Hidden Taxes. Under current law, politicians frequently disguise taxes as “fees” so they can approve them with fewer votes than required for taxes. This straightforward measure stops this practice and protects taxpayers by specifying that tax-like “fees” require the same vote as taxes.

Proposition 27:          NO

If this sounds like the opposite of prop 20 it kind of is.  Prop 27 is trying to do away with Prop 11 that we APPROVED in 2008.  Prop 11 establishes a commission, like Prop 20, to re-draw the districts of the Assembly, Senate, and Board of Equalization.  Prop 20 extends Prop 11 to include the re-drawing of

California’s congressional districts.  So, Yes on Prop 20, and No on Prop 27.

Eliminates Independent Redistricting Commission. Repeals Proposition 11 of 2008, which established an independent redistricting commission, and creates a conflict of interest by authorizing elected officials to draw their district boundaries.

 RD Pierini

1http://caltax.org/issues/ballot.html

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