Skip to comments.Going Broke: State officials spread loot like Santa, expert says
Posted on 09/21/2009 8:56:13 AM PDT by NormsRevenge
The way Dave Doerr sees it, California's elected leaders ran for the wrong offices.
"They really ran to be Santa Claus, and made a mistake and filed for the Assembly and the Senate," said Doerr, the senior tax consultant for the California Taxpayers Association.
Doerr's reference is to a penchant of lawmakers and governors over the past three decades to spend whatever money they have on hand - and promise even more - then let succeeding budget drafters fend for themselves.
"They provide what I call the 'free lunch syndrome,' " said Doerr, who closely observed Capitol life as a top Assembly budget consultant for 40 years. "They pass programs and they don't pass the funding to pay for them."
Doerr's observation is borne out by a Bee analysis of California's spending and debt patterns compared to other states', which found California spends more per capita than the national average in every government program except highways and public welfare - but consistently runs budget deficits and takes on more and more debt.
.. From 1945 to 1978, according to Department of Finance statistics, state government spent more general fund revenues than it collected in 11 of 34 years.
The relative kiddie carousel of budgetary ups and downs became a white-knuckle roller coaster in 1978, with the passage of Proposition 13, which cut property taxes and required a two-thirds vote of the Legislature to pass statewide taxes.
Of the 32 budgets passed since then, 19 have spent more than the state took in from tax revenues.
"The state got off track in general after Prop. 13 in terms of balancing spending with revenues," said Doerr, "and once they did, it wasn't long before they were way off track."
(Excerpt) Read more at sacbee.com ...
Politician's Oath .. Spend loads of OPM!
That’s the same approach that the US congress has. They keep spending and plan on someone else cleaning up the mess. The problem is that the group that’s in office when they finally decide to balance the budget is going to get blamed for the hard times. They’ll never get reelected, even though they’re the ones who ended the problem, not the ones who caused it.
I just turned down a tasty job offer (nope, I’m fully employed now, but this was technically tempting) in San Diego.
I would not consider it. Even with a substantial raise in salary, I would be left with little, if any, extra funds for myself. So, more work and perhaps more fun - in order to feed the illegals and unions?
You’ll notice they first attack Prop. 13. They’ve been after this one for years. And they will continue to until they kill it.
Whenever a politician wants to feel like Santa Claus, I end up feeling like an elf chained to my toymaker’s workbench for another eighteen hour day.
I’m afraid “spread loot like Santa” is giving them far too much credit:
The real St. Nicholas gave charity to the poor. The fantastical Santa makes a distinction between the “naughty” who don’t get any, and the “nice” who do. Given the way politics goes I suspect that a lot of well-off folks who under any reasonable standard of morals have been naughty managed to get a great deal of “loot”.
Your federal tax money also goes to unions and illegals. The state politicians in Cal are of course corrupt and inept or one or the other. We now have a top state tax of just under 11%. Sales tax over 8 in most couties. Other than that San Diego is a great place to live. Lot’s of active duty and retired military.
The only retirees staying CA are old property owners who are covered by low Prop 13 status. If they increase property taxes currently covered by Prop 13..two things will happen, prop values will decrease and more people with money will leave CA, further increasing their problem with revenues versus social spending.
Yes that’s a big clump of them and why not? There are new military retirees all the time and a lot of them want to stay in San Diego.
What a bizzare inconsistent non-sensical statement!
Living in the area influenced by the Sac Bee, I know for a fact that there isn't a tax, a bureaucratic salary increase, spending of any kind, that the BEE didn't support.
Chief among them all are ever increasing salary, benefit and pension increases for public sector employees, all of them, city, county or state.
Welcome to Wonderland.