Keyword: calbudget

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  • California Legislature called into special session on budget deficit

    11/13/2010 1:43:35 PM PST · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 30 replies · 1+ views
    Los Angeles Times ^ | November 12, 2010 | Shane Goldmacher,
    Lame-duck Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger declares that the state faces a fiscal emergency after its chief budget analyst says the shortfall has grown to $25.4 billion. Reporting from Sacramento — Declaring that California faces a fiscal emergency, lame-duck Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said Thursday he would convene a special session of the incoming Legislature to address the state's massive budget deficit. The announcement came one day after the state's chief budget analyst said the fiscal shortfall has grown to $25.4 billion over the next year and a half — far larger than officials had estimated only days earlier. Legislative Analyst Mac Taylor...
  • Schwarzenegger drops idea to borrow from CalPERS to balance budget

    09/16/2010 10:22:37 PM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies · 1+ views
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 9/16/10 | Jack Chang
    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Democratic and Republican legislative leaders huddled for about three hours today to hammer out a long-delayed budget deal and bridge a $19 billion deficit. The only concrete result appeared to be the governor taking off the table a proposal to borrow money from the California Public Employees' Retirement System to balance the budget. The Big Five will meet again at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow. "The governor told the leaders that we're not going to do that," said Schwarzenegger spokesman Aaron McLear about the CalPERS idea. "It's just not the responsible thing to do."
  • Schwarzenegger denounces majority vote budget measure

    08/24/2010 12:23:09 PM PDT · by SmithL · 7 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 9/24/10 | Dan Walters
    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger today denounced Proposition 25, which would lower the legislative vote margin for state budgets from two-thirds to a simple majority, and declared that it's a back-door attempt to make it easier to raise taxes. Schwarzenegger,speaking to a business group in Goleta, responded "absolutely no" when asked about his position on the measure, placed on the ballot by Democrats and unions, and then added, "I believe this is also...a majority vote for tax increases."
  • Whitman welfare ads: Demonizing the poor?

    08/23/2010 7:57:04 AM PDT · by SmithL · 31 replies · 1+ views
    Contra Costa Times ^ | 8/23/10 | Steve Harmon
    SACRAMENTO -- Welfare advocates are criticizing Meg Whitman for ratcheting up her rhetoric against welfare recipients as she rails against waste, fraud and abuse in state government. In a one-minute radio ad that Whitman recently began airing, she touts her plan to create a statewide grand jury to root out waste, fraud and abuse, promising to send to jail anyone "caught robbing the taxpayers." She mentions a state Legislative Analyst's report that found that 150 staffers in the Department of Education are working on programs that it no longer administers, and $3.4 million spent by CalTrans on a single rest...
  • CalPERS loan just latest budget-balancing gimmick

    08/22/2010 8:45:11 AM PDT · by SmithL · 16 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 8/22/10 | Kevin Yamamura
    In the ongoing budget stalemate, Democrats refuse to accept devastating cuts while Republicans reject new taxes. Nobody is budging. The longer this drags out, the more likely it is that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and lawmakers will resort to a well-worn playbook of accounting shifts, borrowing and asset sales to close out the rest of the budget. In the past, this has included paying state workers one day later and trying to sell the quasi-public state workers' compensation insurance fund. Such one-time budget tricks delay political backlash but contribute to California's long-term financial instability. They avoid taxes, so Republicans are happy....
  • CalPERS loan sought by Schwarzenegger likely 'very expensive,' analysts say

    08/21/2010 9:37:17 AM PDT · by SmithL · 26 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 8/21/10 | Dale Kasler
    For the past year, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has warned that CalPERS was heading over a cliff and pawning off its financial problems on future generations. Now he wants to borrow $2 billion from the California Public Employees' Retirement System to help fix this year's state budget. The governor's plan represents an apparent about-face – and raises questions about the long-term costs. The last time the state borrowed from CalPERS, it had to pay the pension fund $400 million in interest. More borrowing would surely bring more interest expense, experts said Friday. CalPERS is obliged to "treat the loan as they...
  • Schwarzenegger budget plan would borrow from CalPERS

    08/20/2010 8:01:08 AM PDT · by SmithL · 11 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 8/20/10 | Kevin Yamamura
    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has privately proposed borrowing $2 billion from the state's giant pension fund to help bridge California's $19 billion budget deficit. The plan would take the money as an advance against future savings from pension cuts, according to sources close to the negotiations who would not be identified because of the sensitive nature of the talks. The Republican governor is demanding that lawmakers reduce pension benefits for newly hired state workers back to pre-1999 levels as part of any budget agreement he signs. The Legislature and Gov. Gray Davis that year authorized larger pension benefits under the assumption...
  • Undaunted by analysis, Steinberg pushes tax swap

    08/17/2010 7:52:13 AM PDT · by SmithL · 1 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 8/17/10 | Kevin Yamamura
    In an era of term limits, Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg is now the veteran budget negotiator among the four legislative leaders. Besides the concerns of the Senate Democratic caucus he leads, Steinberg must also consider impacts on state workers who live in his district.The Sacramento Democrat spoke with three reporters on a variety of issues last week after touring a middle school and job-training facility in North Sacramento. What follows is part of the conversation on pensions and the Democratic proposal to raise income and vehicle taxes in exchange for decreasing sales taxes. >Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger says pension...
  • California Flails Away Once More

    08/09/2010 5:28:37 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 12 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | August 9, 2010 | Bruce Bialosky
    California still faces a $19.1 billion deficit. The budget is over a month late, no negotiated compromise is in sight, and worst of all, no serious minds in Sacramento are even considering long-term solutions. What we usually get instead are short-term gimmicks, the most recent one now has been presented as part of the Democratic proposal to balance the budget. Darrell Steinberg, Democrat and Senate President Pro Tempore (leader), is suggesting a tax shift. His proposal cuts the state sales tax rate by 1.75% and raises income tax rates and car license fees to offset the sales tax reduction. This...
  • 2 California propositions could undo budget patch (Howling Libtard Alert)

    08/03/2010 10:50:44 PM PDT · by Zakeet · 6 replies · 138+ views
    Los Angeles Times ^ | August 4, 2010 | Shane Goldmacher
    Two propositions on the November ballot could create a $1-billion hole in California's already beleaguered budget by undoing one of the few agreements that lawmakers and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger have struck this year to shrink the deficit. Tucked into both measures, written before the budget agreement, are provisions that apply retroactively to all of 2010. Opponents are now accusing the special interests behind the initiatives of pressing their agendas at the expense of the state. "These two initiatives are Exhibits A and B as to why the initiative process needs to be reformed," said Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg...
  • California governor declares state of fiscal emergency

    07/28/2010 1:30:04 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 43 replies · 10+ views
    SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Increasing pressure on lawmakers to negotiate a state budget that closes a $19 billion shortfall, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency over the state's finances on Wednesday. In the declaration, Schwarzenegger ordered three furlough days per month beginning in August for thousands of state employees to preserve the state's cash to pay the state's debt obligations and for essential services. California's budget is several weeks overdue and Schwarzenegger and top lawmakers are at impasse over how to balance the state's books.
  • Dan Walters: Old fight over California taxes flares anew

    07/26/2010 7:59:00 AM PDT · by SmithL · 13 replies · 1+ views
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 7/26/10 | Dan Walters
    When California faced a major budget crisis in the early 1990s, thanks to what was then the worst recession since the Great Depression, a Republican governor – Pete Wilson – and the Legislature enacted a big, albeit temporary, increase in state taxes. Despite the boost in sales and income taxes, however, state revenue continued to decline as the recession deepened, touching off years of political debate over causes and effects. Those on the right contended that by increasing taxes, Wilson and the Legislature depressed economic activity, thus causing a further decline in revenue. Those on the left argued that if...
  • Brown and Whitman Take a Policy Furlough

    07/25/2010 8:21:24 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 6 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | July 25, 2010 | Debra J. Saunders
    Click here to find out more! Today's question is: Why have both major candidates for California governor -- Democrat Jerry Brown and Republican Meg Whitman -- failed to endorse the governor's authority to furlough state workers? How do you build a house without a hammer? Here's the situation. The governor can't just snap his fingers and cut the size of state government to close a budget shortfall. His hands are tied. He has to honor collective bargaining, abide by a complex array of employment rules, justify his decisions in court and deliver mandated services. The governor also has to sell...
  • How to make $1.4 billion of the state's budget deficit disappear (California)

    07/19/2010 9:54:19 PM PDT · by Spktyr · 15 replies
    Los Angeles Times ^ | July 16, 2010 | Shane Goldmacher
    There are supposed to be two ways to close a deficit: raise taxes or cut spending. But a move is afoot in the Legislature to trim California’s budget shortfall through Sacramento's time-honored third way: making rosier revenue assumptions. The Legislative Analyst's Office gave lawmakers just such an opening. Assembly Speaker John A. Perez (D-Los Angeles) said Thursday that Republicans and Democrats alike had agreed to cut $1.4 billion from the deficit by penciling in the rosier revenue forecast by the LAO, which anticipates more tax revenue than is projected by the state Department of Finance.
  • Illegal Aliens Get Millions In Monthly Welfare Checks

    07/19/2010 4:14:29 PM PDT · by george76 · 32 replies · 2+ views
    Judicial Watch ^ | 07/14/2009
    On the verge of going bankrupt with an astounding $26.3 billion deficit, the nation’s most populous state is considering saving hundreds of millions of dollars annually by cutting monthly welfare payments to illegal immigrants. The savings doesn’t even include the billions of dollars that California spends annually to educate, incarcerate and medically treat the 2.7 million illegal aliens (7% of the state’s population) who live in the state that has so generously offered them sanctuary for decades. It turns out that legislators are finally realizing that illegal immigrants are draining their precious Golden State. would save a much-needed $640 million...
  • Schwarzenegger Orders Minimum Wage for State Workers

    07/01/2010 5:15:46 PM PDT · by GiovannaNicoletta · 14 replies
    The Sacramento Bee ^ | July 1, 2010 | Jon Ortiz
    The Schwarzenegger administration today ordered State Controller John Chiang to reduce state worker pay for July to the federal minimum allowed by law -- $7.25 an hour for most state workers. The instructions from the Department of Personnel Administration exclude roughly 37,000 state workers in six bargaining units that recently came to tentative labor agreements with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
  • Calpers and risk: Together forever? (CA Taxpayers on hook for State Employee Pension Fund Loses)

    07/01/2010 9:42:28 AM PDT · by mojito · 9 replies
    Fortune ^ | 6/30/2010 | Kit R. Roane
    Before clocking a $100 billion loss in early 2009, the California Public Employees' Retirement System, known as Calpers, had the swagger of a hedge fund and the certainty of a saint. Other pension funds followed its lead, loading up on leverage, investing in unrated CDOs, shoving money into high-priced private equity deals and barreling into commodities and real estate. The question now is whether a loss of nearly 40% of its market value -- the worst loss in the system's 77-year history -- has brought Calpers sufficiently back down to earth to avoid another such debacle, and whether other chastened...
  • California on 'verge of system failure’

    06/23/2010 7:34:00 AM PDT · by americanophile · 58 replies
    Glober & Mail ^ | June 18, 2010 | Barrie McKenna
    rnella Sims has seen a lot in her 34 years as a Los Angeles County court reporter, but nothing like this. Case files piling up by the thousands, phones ringing off the hook, forced midweek courthouse closings and occasional brawls as frustrated citizens queue for hours to pay parking fines. “People think we’re becoming a Third World country,” said Ms. Sims, 55. “They don’t understand.” It’s a story that’s being repeated all across California – and throughout the United States – as cash-strapped state and local governments grapple with collapsed tax revenues and swelling budget gaps. Mass layoffs, slashed health...
  • Dan Walters: A three-way stalemate over California's budget

    06/22/2010 8:04:53 AM PDT · by SmithL · 4 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/22/10 | Dan Walters
    Budget, budget, who's got a budget? The governor has a state budget that his fellow Republicans more or less support. Assembly Democrats have a budget whose centerpiece is a complex scheme to borrow billions of dollars. And Democratic senators have a budget that's based on raising taxes and shifting some programs from the state to counties. Democrats control the 10-member, two-house conference committee that's supposed to be reconciling all three budgets into one version that would be placed before the entire Legislature. They have the votes to do it. However, the committee has been going through the budget page by...
  • Senate Democrats outline plan to shift services to counties

    06/21/2010 6:10:26 PM PDT · by SmithL · 7 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/21/10 | Kevin Yamamura
    Senate Democrats on Monday unveiled their plan to give counties greater control of state programs, potentially shedding $3 billion to $4 billion in ongoing costs to the state budget. Many of the programs are already delivered by counties but paid for through state coffers. Senate Democrats see their changes as a more appropriate "realignment" of services and costs over the next four years. Their plan would not cut taxpayer costs but rather give counties new forms of revenues to pay for the added responsibilities. The state would approve a tax on oil production, permanently extend the state's higher vehicle-license fee...
  • Dan Walters: Pension fund bombshell could worsen budget woes

    06/20/2010 2:47:40 PM PDT · by SmithL · 18 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/20/10 | Dan Walters
    California's fiscal pickle – state and local budgets that are many billions of dollars out of balance – may have just gotten worse by hundreds of billions of dollars. The Governmental Accounting Standards Board has dropped a bombshell with preliminary new rules that, if adopted, would force governments to increase projections of pension liabilities by using tighter "discount rates" – effectively, lower assumptions of pension fund earnings. The huge California Public Employees' Retirement System, the California State Teachers' Retirement System, the University of California Retirement System and dozens of locally managed pension funds would no longer be able to minimize...
  • CALIFORNIA: AG's office questions legality of Assembly budget borrowing

    06/17/2010 6:21:26 PM PDT · by SmithL · 8 replies · 345+ views
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 6/17/10 | Jim Sanders
    In 2004, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger barnstormed around the state for Proposition 58, using an oversized credit card as a prop and vowing that it was time for the state to "tear up its credit card." Now Attorney General Jerry Brown has concluded that Assembly Democrats' plan to borrow billions to help ease the state's $19.1 billion deficit could be deemed illegal under that ballot measure if challenged in court. "We conclude that a court could reasonably determine that the proposed transaction violates Proposition 58," the attorney general's office said in a letter to Schwarzenegger's legal affairs secretary. Assembly Speaker John...
  • CALIFORNIA: Lawmakers set to miss budget deadline again

    06/15/2010 7:46:46 AM PDT · by SmithL · 4 replies · 256+ views
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/15/10 | Jim Sanders
    California lawmakers' constitutional deadline to pass a state budget by June 15 will be ignored today – again. Only once in the past two decades has the deadline been met, last year, but that spending plan was quickly unraveled by the economy and needed more than $20 billion in fixes. California finds itself sinking again in red ink, a projected $19.1 billion, and no compromise is in sight between Democrats intent on raising billions in revenue and Republicans adamantly opposed. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, through a spokesman, expressed a sense of urgency about today's missed deadline. "Our deficit grows every day...
  • CalPERS plans to seek $600 million more from the state (Bankrupt CA)

    05/18/2010 1:59:33 PM PDT · by mojito · 2 replies · 433+ views
    Los Angeles Times ^ | 5/18/2010 | Marc Lifsher
    Taxpayers would be on the hook for increasing their contribution to the state employees' pension fund by $600 million a year — at a time when the state budget is $19 billion in the red — under a recommendation approved Tuesday by a committee of the California Public Employees' Retirement System. The increase, which is expected to be endorsed by the 13-member board at a meeting Wednesday, is $400 million more than fund executives had expected to seek from the state. The state currently contributes $3.3 billion a year to employees' pensions. The jump in the state's annual contractual payment...
  • Rapid Response Roundup: May Revise

    05/14/2010 3:15:48 PM PDT · by SmithL · 2 replies · 261+ views
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 5/14/10 | Torey Van Oot
    Want to know what lawmakers and interest groups are saying about Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's revised spending proposal for the next fiscal year? Find a collection of responses after the jump. We will update the list as more responses roll in, so be sure to check back. Click here to read our full story on the budget proposal. The full text of the plan can be found here. Democratic lawmakers and officials: Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg: We will not pass a budget that eliminates Cal-WORKS. Outright. We will not be party to devastating children and families. Period. It's not...
  • The Failed State of California - The Changing Landscape of America

    03/15/2010 4:01:28 PM PDT · by george76 · 32 replies · 1,148+ views
    New Geography ^ | 03/06/2010 | Robert J. Cristiano
    The Golden State is not so golden anymore. California is broke. With a $20 billion dollar deficit and tax revenues down 27% from last year, Governor Schwarzenegger looks to Washington D.C. for a bail-out ... Unemployment is statistically 12.3%, but functionally, it runs closer to 20% of the work force. Nowhere is unemployment more tragic than in the Central Valley, the fruit and vegetable producer of the world. The unemployment rate in arguably the most fertile land on the planet is near 30% as residents line up in bread lines to feed their families. How did this happen? What happened...
  • Billions in red ink drowning California's cities, schools and counties, too

    03/15/2010 3:48:09 PM PDT · by george76 · 37 replies · 1,235+ views
    San Jose Mercury News ^ | 03/07/2010 | Denis C. Theriault
    With even well-managed counties, cities and schools finding themselves in the same budget hole that has swallowed state government, California now confronts a financial crisis that may be unrivaled — though it is also maddeningly difficult to quantify. So just how broke is California? California's collective deficit may be double the state government's $20 billion budget gap. Now consider that California has 58 counties, 480 or so cities and nearly 1,000 school districts — plus dozens more special districts, like transit agencies and water boards. Amid California's harshest slump since the Great Depression, officials from one end of the state...
  • Worst-case for California's budget deficit next year? $25 billion

    11/14/2009 12:30:57 PM PST · by NormsRevenge · 26 replies · 1,477+ views
    Mercury News ^ | 11/14/09 | Denis C. Theriault
    SACRAMENTO — With high unemployment continuing to eat at California's tax revenues, and risky budget gimmicks failing to materialize, the state's deficit next year could hit a staggering $25 billion. If worst-case scenarios hold true, several insiders who track the state's financial picture tell the Mercury News, the deficit through June 2011 would be billions higher than previous estimates. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's best-case estimate earlier this week was half that sum, at $12.4 billion. Assembly Republican leader Sam Blakeslee of San Luis Obispo floated a number as high as $20 billion during water negotiations. "It's not outrageous," one budget expert...
  • Calif-ornery (California is stealing from its residents)

    11/14/2009 3:51:08 PM PST · by rabscuttle385 · 37 replies · 2,226+ views
    The Tribune-Review, Pittsburgh, Pa. ^ | 2009-11-13 | Donald J. Boudreaux
    On Nov. 1, the government of the state of California began withholding from workers' paychecks 10 percent more than what it had been withholding. The Los Angeles Times described this move -- prompted by California's fiscal calamity -- as "a forced, interest-free loan" from taxpayers to the government. The Times explained to its California readers that "You'll be repaid any extra withholding in April. Those who would receive a refund anyway will receive a larger one, and those who owe taxes will owe less." The ostensible purpose of withholding is to better ensure that taxpayers actually pay the taxes they...
  • California to withhold a bigger chunk of paychecks

    11/01/2009 8:08:17 AM PST · by EagleUSA · 40 replies · 2,000+ views
    Los Angeles Times ^ | 10/31/2009 | Shane Goldmacher
    Reporting from Los Angeles and Sacramento - Starting Sunday, cash-strapped California will dig deeper into the pocketbooks of wage earners -- holding back 10% more than it already does in state income taxes just as the biggest shopping season of the year kicks into gear. Technically, it's not a tax increase, even though it may feel like one when your next paycheck arrives. As part of a bundle of budget patches adopted in the summer, the state is taking more money now in withholding, even though workers' annual tax bills won't change. Think of it as a forced, interest-free loan:...
  • Calif. university system OKs 20 percent fee hike [on top of recent 10 percent hike]

    07/21/2009 7:09:46 PM PDT · by rabscuttle385 · 18 replies · 1,733+ views
    AP ^ | 2009-07-21
    LONG BEACH, Calif. (AP) — The California State University system raised student fees Tuesday by 20 percent as part of a budget plan that would also shrink enrollment and furlough nearly all employees for two days a month. The Board of Trustees voted 17-1 to raise undergraduate fees by $672 a year to $4,827 in the nation's largest four-year university system. The fee increase, which follows a 10 percent hike approved in May, is part of the 23-campus system's plan to close a $584 million budget shortfall caused by an unprecedented drop in state funding to CSU, which has with...
  • Legislative leaders say California budget deal is unlikely tonight ( but close )

    07/15/2009 9:44:34 PM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 21 replies · 1,622+ views
    Mercury News ^ | 07/15/2009 09:10:55 PM PDT | Mike Zapler
    SACRAMENTO — Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders say they're nearing a deal to close the state's $26.3 billion deficit. And despite California's left-leaning electorate, the final product is almost certain to be settled on Republican terms, with deep spending cuts to most state programs and no new taxes. After huddling in the governor's office until almost midnight Tuesday, the Big Five — Schwarzenegger and the four Democratic and Republican leaders of the Assembly and Senate — reconvened Wednesday afternoon for another lengthy negotiating session. All sides said they are within striking distance of a deal.But emerging from the governor's...
  • Talks intensify over closing Calif.'s $26B deficit

    07/11/2009 12:58:27 PM PDT · by Simmy2.5 · 25 replies · 1,956+ views
    AP via Yahoo ^ | On Saturday July 11, 2009, 3:43 pm EDT | By Judy Lin, Associated Press Writer
    Schwarzenegger, lawmakers express optimism as talks resume to close California's $26B deficit SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- Against a backdrop of IOUs and expanding government furloughs, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders expressed optimism Saturday that they were moving toward a compromise that could end California's fiscal calamity. Negotiations to close the state's $26.3 billion deficit restarted after two weeks of inaction and partisan bickering. Top lawmakers from both parties said a budget-balancing deal was possible in the coming week. "I would say we're getting very close to a general framework, but there are still outlying questions," said Assembly Minority Leader...
  • Fitch Again Cuts Calif. Rating As Budget Battle Continues [two steps above junk] [may fall further]

    07/06/2009 2:37:44 PM PDT · by rabscuttle385 · 22 replies · 2,225+ views
    Fitch Ratings cut California's long-term general obligation bond rating by two notches to BBB, the second cut on the rating since late June, based on the state's inability to achieve an agreement on its budget and cash flow solutions amid its severe financial crisis. Legislators in the state have been deadlocked for more than a month on ways to close what is now a $26 billion deficit in a $92 billion general-fund budget. The state plans to issue a little over $3 billion in IOUs to thousands of creditors this month after lawmakers failed to come to an agreement on...
  • Gov: State's Deficit Has Grown To $26.3 Billion

    07/01/2009 9:27:55 PM PDT · by Steelfish · 11 replies · 1,479+ views
    SFChronicle ^ | July 01st, 2009
    Gov: State's deficit has grown to $26.3 billion Matthew Yi, Richard Procter,Wyatt Buchanan, Chronicle Sacramento Bureau Wednesday, July 1, 2009 Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said today that the state's deficit has grown by $2 billion - to $26.3 billion due to the Legislature's failure to pass a comprehensive solution to solve the state's shortfall. The Republican governor also declared a fiscal emergency, citing the Legislature's inability to pass a plan by last night's midnight deadline. The fiscal emergency means that under Proposition 58, lawmakers will have 45 days to adopt a plan to close the deficit. If they fail to meet...
  • California Digging (Its Own Financial Grave)

    07/01/2009 5:16:12 PM PDT · by WhiteCastle · 38 replies · 3,244+ views
    IBD Editorials ^ | Juky 1, 2009 | Investor's Business Daily
    Regulation: Ignoring the first rule of holes, a bankrupt state passing out IOUs welcomes an EPA waiver allowing it to further kill its economy. Too bad the state can't stop the air pollution imported from a growing China. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday granted California its long-standing request — denied by the Bush administration — for a waiver to allow it to impose even more stringent air pollution rules than currently required by the federal government.The way is now clear for implementation of a 2002 state law requiring new cars to increase their fuel economy 40% by 2016....
  • Politicians Bankrupted California, Not Prop. 13

    06/29/2009 11:49:27 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 4 replies · 1,136+ views
    Townhall.com ^ | June 29, 2009 | Carol Platt Liebau
    As the end of California’s fiscal year approaches, the Governor and state legislators confront a $24 billion deficit. While Republicans and Democrats wrangle over how to address the gaping shortfall, some members of the press have started to look for a scapegoat for the fiscal train wreck. Many have blamed the California taxpayer’s only protection: Prop. 13, the 1978 measure capping state property taxes at 1% of a home’s assessed value. Perhaps the most egregious example of the finger-pointing is a recent piece from TIME’s Kevin O’Leary, moaning that “Before Prop 13, in the 1950s and '60s, California was a...
  • Politicians Bankrupted California, Not Prop. 13

    06/29/2009 11:42:20 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 5 replies · 922+ views
    Townhall.com ^ | June 29, 2009 | Carol Platt Liebau
    As the end of California’s fiscal year approaches, the Governor and state legislators confront a $24 billion deficit. While Republicans and Democrats wrangle over how to address the gaping shortfall, some members of the press have started to look for a scapegoat for the fiscal train wreck. Many have blamed the California taxpayer’s only protection: Prop. 13, the 1978 measure capping state property taxes at 1% of a home’s assessed value. Perhaps the most egregious example of the finger-pointing is a recent piece from TIME’s Kevin O’Leary, moaning that “Before Prop 13, in the 1950s and '60s, California was a...
  • Assembly Democrats push budget plan that doesn't need GOP support

    06/29/2009 7:48:36 AM PDT · by SmithL · 4 replies · 1,048+ views
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/29/9 | Steve Wiegand and Jim Sanders
    Democratic legislators trotted out a stick-and-carrot approach to closing the state's budget gap Sunday night, negotiating with the governor on one floor of the Capitol while voting for a package of cuts and taxes on another. Majority Democrats in the Assembly were voting late Sunday on a $23.4 billion package of spending cuts, tax and fee increases, and accounting tricks designed to close a gaping hole in the budget for the fiscal year that starts Wednesday. Unlike last week's efforts, when at least some Republican votes were needed to pass the bills so they could take effect immediately, Sunday's package...
  • Fiscal crisis puts Prop. 13 up for discussion

    06/29/2009 7:37:27 AM PDT · by SmithL · 10 replies · 1,224+ views
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 6/29/9 | Joe Garofoli
    About this time every year, as the Legislature and governor wrestle over how to pass the state budget, somewhere, somebody blames Sacramento's stalemate - and the state of the California's mediocre schools and crumbling roads - on Proposition 13. The wail usually echoes unanswered for a simple reason: Thirty-one years after California voters overwhelmingly passed the law that fixed the rate of property tax increases and required a two-thirds majority of the Legislature to raise taxes and approve state budgets, polls show that Prop. 13 is as popular as ever.But this year, with California and the nation in the throes...
  • CALIFORNIA: Governor says he would veto any budget end run

    06/29/2009 7:30:51 AM PDT · by SmithL · 46 replies · 3,308+ views
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 6/29/9 | Matthew Yi, Wyatt Buchanan
    In a controversial simple-majority vote Sunday night, the state Assembly approved raising taxes on oil production and tobacco products as part of a Democratic budget proposal that closes most of the $24.3 billion budget shortfall through June 2010. But the plan met immediate resistance when a spokesman for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vowed that the Republican would veto such an end run around GOP lawmakers. Bills containing new taxes normally require a two-thirds majority to be enacted. "He will veto any majority-vote budget fix," said Schwarzenegger spokesman Aaron McLear. "I think this shows that the Legislature is not yet serious about...
  • GOVERNMENT HACK OF THE DAY

    06/29/2009 5:52:24 AM PDT · by Turret Gunner A20 · 22 replies · 2,153+ views
    NEALZ NUZE ^ | June 29, 2009 | NEAL BOORTZ
    California State Assembly Speaker Karen Bass, a Democrat, did an interview with the LA Times. Thought you may enjoy her response to the following question: How do you think conservative talk radio has affected the Legislature's work? Bass' response: The Republicans were essentially threatened and terrorized against voting for revenue. Now [some] are facing recalls. They operate under a terrorist threat: "You vote for revenue and your career is over." I don't know why we allow that kind of terrorism to exist. I guess it's about free speech, but it's extremely unfair. Now that's a first. I know that politicians...
  • Bail Out California

    06/29/2009 5:49:55 AM PDT · by devane617 · 17 replies · 2,118+ views
    Forbes ^ | 06/26/2009 | Michael Maiello
    *SNIP* California has 55 electoral votes. A Democrat can't win the White House without winning California. "Obama to California: Drop Dead," is not the kind of Sacramento Bee headline that the president or his party can afford.
  • Time (Magazine) Blames Calif. Budget Mess on... Low Taxes?

    06/28/2009 5:46:40 AM PDT · by Zakeet · 57 replies · 3,286+ views
    NewsBusters ^ | June 28, 2009 | Warner Todd Huston
    For Time Magazine, Kevin O'Leary has decided that he's figured out why California is in such a budget mess. Is it because the state indulges over generous social programs, or always has some of the highest taxes in the nation, or because the denizens of its capitol in Sacramento are paragons of waste, fraud and theft? Nope. It's because California has Proposition 13, a measure that prevents state government from too easily raising taxes. Yep, O'Leary thinks California is in a mess because it doesn't have high enough taxes. And it's all Reagan's fault. With some of the highest...
  • Schwarzenegger's high-stakes strategy could close the budget abyss --or cause the meltdown

    06/27/2009 11:14:18 PM PDT · by KingofZion · 10 replies · 1,475+ views
    The Los Angeles Times ^ | June 27, 2009 | Evan Halper
    Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, seeking to conquer what could be the last budget crisis of his tenure, is engaged in a high-stakes negotiating strategy with lawmakers that could force him to preside over a meltdown of state government. As legislators have scrambled to stop the state from postponing payment of its bills and issuing IOUs starting next week, the governor has vowed to veto any measure that fails to close the state's entire $24-billion deficit. *** The governor readily admits that he sees the crisis as a chance to make big changes to government -- to "reform the system," he said...
  • OPINION: Why California can't be governed

    06/25/2009 9:49:45 PM PDT · by thecodont · 63 replies · 3,696+ views
    Los Angeles Times / latimes.com ^ | June 25, 2009 | By Jerry Roberts and Phil Trounstine
    Afew [sic] hours after California voters approved his Proposition 13 tax-cut measure on June 6, 1978, a bibulous and exultant Howard Jarvis dropped his pants for the benefit of a few reporters gathered in his suite at the L.A. Biltmore Hotel. A reporter had asked Jarvis why he was limping, so his ostensible reason was to show a large, ugly bruise, which he'd suffered in a fall a few days before, on his ample, boxer-clad behind. The surprise gesture, however, also afforded the earthy and profane Jarvis a chance to display his contempt for the press and, by extension, the...
  • California cities vow to sue if state siphons gas tax funds

    06/25/2009 12:58:41 PM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies · 1,293+ views
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/25/9 | Loretta Kalb
    California cities will sue the state if its new fiscal budget includes "stealing" local gas tax funds, leaders for the League of California Cities warned today. "Our intention is to be prepared to file a lawsuit the day after the budget is signed," Chris McKenzie, the league's executive director, said at a news conference in the Sacramento Convention Center. "The (state) Constitution and statutes have never authorized the state to steal gas tax funds."
  • Democrats' budget-balancing plan crashes and burns

    06/25/2009 7:52:52 AM PDT · by SmithL · 17 replies · 1,694+ views
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 6/25/9 | Steve Wiegand, Jim Sanders and Susan Ferris
    California's budget mess got even messier Wednesday, with the failure of legislators to reach a compromise on spending cuts, the state controller warning he will issue IOUs next week instead of checks, and no clear idea of what to do next."How can the people of California have a clue what we're doing if we don't?" asked Assemblyman Jim Nielsen, R-Gerber, as the Assembly debated a proposal to make $11 billion in program cuts to help plug a $24.3 billion budget hole.Nielsen's comment was in reference to the fact that GOP legislators didn't receive copies of the inches-thick bill until an...
  • California will issue IOUs starting July 2

    06/24/2009 6:11:41 PM PDT · by bruinbirdman · 14 replies · 2,080+ views
    California could begin issuing IOUs on July 2 unless the governor and lawmakers reach a budget deal, the latest challenge for the financially strapped state. On Wednesday, the state starts “a fiscal year with a massively unbalanced spending plan and cash shortfall not seen since the Great Depression,” State Controller John Chiang said in a news release. The state faces a $2.8 billion shortfall in July, increasing to $6.5 billion in September, with a “double-digit freefall” in the following months, he said. The state has an estimated $24 billion shortfall for the next fiscal year, after voters rejected propositions in...
  • California weighs global warming fees on polluters

    06/24/2009 6:10:32 PM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 18 replies · 1,581+ views
    AP on SFGate.com ^ | 6/24/09 | Samantha Young - ap
    Sacramento, CA (AP) -- California refineries and utilities are facing a new levy intended to pay for the state's landmark program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. If approved, the fee would raise $51.2 million annually for the next three years and would be the country's first statewide carbon fee on industry. The total would drop to $36.2 million by the fifth year. The fee will be considered Thursday by the California Air Resources Board.