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Keyword: moonbeam

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  • California's budget problems linger while many other states shape up

    05/19/2012 11:20:36 AM PDT · by SmithL · 19 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/19/12 | David Siders
    The pile-on was in full effect within hours of Gov. Jerry Brown's announcement this week that California's budget deficit had grown to $15.7 billion, with The Week giving its national audience a summary of the Golden State's financial affairs. "California's financial apocalypse," the magazine offered. "A concise guide." Fox News played the Red Hot Chili Peppers' "Californication," and host Greg Gutfeld proclaimed Brown captain of "the Titanic that is California, a state so broke it may ask Greece for a loan." On Friday, the Democratic governor slapped back on national TV. "This is not Europe," Brown told Charlie Rose on...
  • Gov. mistakenly says Facebook invented in Calif.

    05/18/2012 8:56:00 PM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies
    AP via SFGate ^ | 5/18/12
    Apparently, California Gov. Jerry Brown forgot to rent "The Social Network." In an appearance Friday on "CBS This Morning," the California governor said his state is still the land of innovation and where Facebook was invented. He added: "Not in Texas, not in Arizona, not in Manhattan and certainly not, you know, under the White House or the Congress." . . .
  • This just in: Jerry Brown guessed wrong. Again. Tack another billion or so on that deficit.

    05/18/2012 1:16:23 PM PDT · by Mark Landsbaum · 7 replies
    We wrote for the weekend (see our column Sunday morning when it goes up here) that Gov. Jerry Brown is a bad guesser. The ink wasn’t even dry yet – in fact the Sunday paper hasn’t even been printed yet – and we learn that Brown guessed wrong again. Back in January Brown guessed that the state budget would be $9.2 billion in the red. Wrong. Monday Brown revised his estimate. Then he said it would be $15.7 billion in the red. Wrong. Today the independent Legislative Analyst affirmed that Jerry’s wrong again. It will be $17 billion plus some...
  • To Gov. Jerry Brown's dismay, pension board phases in state hike

    05/16/2012 4:09:55 PM PDT · by SmithL · 6 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 5/16/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    Against Gov. Jerry Brown's wishes, the California Public Employees' Retirement System board voted today to phase in a higher cost to the state over two years rather than bill the state immediately in full. In a letter to the board, Brown called that "not a prudent decision." The disagreement was over the pace at which PERS is lowering its assumptions about future investment returns from 7.75 percent to 7.5 percent, called the discount rate. Such changes are intended to compensate for lower market returns. When the rate of return assumption goes down, governments must contribute more. The PERS board agreed...
  • Steinberg: Democrats seeking alternatives to some budget cuts {in the Golden State}

    05/16/2012 4:05:51 PM PDT · by SmithL · 6 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 5/16/12 | Torey Van Oot
    Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg today repeated a pledge to look for budget solutions that would allow lawmakers to preserve some services targeted with steep cuts under Gov. Jerry Brown's revised budget plan. "I said on Monday, I'm not looking for a public fight here," the Sacramento Democrat said this morning. "We're looking to work collaboratively and yet not be afraid to have our differences or air our differences with the other stakeholders, the other parties, but come to a resolution where we can in fact buy out some of the worst cuts." The revised budget proposal released by...
  • Jerry Brown aims new budget at tax vote

    05/15/2012 8:29:04 AM PDT · by SmithL · 8 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/15/12 | Dan Walters
    Just a few months ago, Gov. Jerry Brown chastised "declinists" and "dystopian journalists" for their pessimism about California, particularly about emerging from a deep recession. "Contrary to those critics who fantasize that California is a failed state, I see unspent potential and incredible opportunity," Brown told the Legislature in January, citing supposed signs of economic recovery. On Monday, however, Brown blamed a sluggish economy for revenues falling billions of dollars short of the rosy estimates in the budget he signed last June. "You can never get it quite right," Brown told reporters as he released a revised budget aimed at...
  • Optimistic projections led to dramatic surge in California budget deficit

    05/15/2012 8:25:08 AM PDT · by SmithL · 12 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/15/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    Gov. Jerry Brown announced Monday that the state budget deficit had grown by a remarkable 70 percent since January, but fiscal experts said the economy had little to do with it. They instead blamed a bad marriage of volatile capital gains and political intransigence that led state leaders last year to count on a huge upswing in revenues that never materialized. At the same time, corporate tax changes from 2009 appear to have cost California more than state officials ever realized. The Democratic governor says the general fund deficit has mushroomed from $9.2 billion to $15.7 billion. Most of the...
  • FLASHBACK: 2011 Dems reject GOP plan to eliminate CA's $15.4 B deficit. Defict now $16 B

    05/14/2012 3:30:23 PM PDT · by cakid1 · 2 replies
    cbs47 ^ | 5-14-12 | cakid1
    FLASHBACK.. 2011 Democrats reject GOP plan to eliminate CA's $15.4 billion deficit without tax hike.... From 2011 ! Deficit is now $16 billion... For some in California its Déjà vu all over again. This week Governor Jerry Brown announced his ‘Honest’ budget from last year is now $16 billion in the red. Republicans did not support his plan. They offered their own plan to cut state spending and balance the budget without tax hikes. Now, one year later the Governor's new plan is convince voters to approve $63 billion in new taxes (over 7 years) According to an LA Times...
  • Shortfall in California’s Budget Swells to $16 Billion

    05/12/2012 5:06:21 PM PDT · by reaganaut1 · 44 replies
    New York Times ^ | May 12, 2012 | ADAM NAGOURNEY
    The state budget shortfall in California has increased dramatically in the last six months, forcing state officials to assemble a series of new spending cuts that are likely to mean further reductions to schools, health care and other social programs already battered by nearly five years of budget retrenchment, state officials announced on Saturday. Gov. Jerry Brown, disclosing the development in a video posted on YouTube, said that California’s shortfall was now projected to be $16 billion, up from $9.2 billion in January. Mr. Brown said that he would propose a revised budget on Monday to deal with it. “We...
  • Jerry Brown submits tax petitions, says 'difficult' budget cuts next

    05/11/2012 4:22:21 PM PDT · by SmithL · 13 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/11/12 | David Siders and Torey Van Oot
    In one choreographed appearance at the office of the Sacramento County Registrar of Voters, Gov. Jerry Brown's campaign to raise taxes appeared on Friday to take shape. A week after announcing he had collected enough signatures to qualify the initiative for the November ballot, Brown – accompanied by a new political consultant, the first lady and his dog – turned several boxes of them in. The event came just days before Brown is expected to propose deeper spending reductions in a budget revision Monday to deal with a deficit that likely has grown beyond $10 billion. The Democratic governor cast...
  • Union president says she told Jerry Brown: 'furloughs are off the table'

    05/10/2012 4:25:17 PM PDT · by SmithL · 37 replies
    SacBee: The State Worker ^ | 5/10/12 | Jon Ortiz
    In a memo to members today, SEIU Local 1000 President Yvonne Walker said that she was consulted about Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to cut state employees' pay and that she drew a line at imposing unpaid time off on workers. "First let me say that I have made it clear that furloughs are not on the table," Walker wrote.
  • Jerry Brown tells unions to brace for California state worker pay cuts

    05/09/2012 9:55:33 PM PDT · by SmithL · 19 replies
    SacBee: The State Worker ^ | 5/9/12 | Jon Ortiz
    State workers' compensation is back on the budget chopping block. Brown administration officials met with the state employee union leaders last week, according to sources familiar with the meetings, to warn them that the next version of the governor's budget will include an unspecified cut in employee costs up to 10 percent. The administration in January estimated that California is confronting a $9.2 billion deficit through 2012-13, but a recent state analysis concluded the actual gap is considerably more. The sources, who declined to talk on the record because the administration asked all involved to keep the discussions secret, said...
  • Upcoming tax battle could be a nasty feud

    05/07/2012 4:37:54 PM PDT · by SmithL · 17 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/7/12 | Dan Walters
    Let's get ready to rumble. In this corner is California Gov. Jerry Brown. In that corner is Molly Munger, a very wealthy civil rights attorney. Brown and his union allies want voters to raise their own sales taxes, plus income taxes on the most affluent, to narrow a chronic budget gap. Munger and the state PTA want to raise income taxes on all but the lowest-income Californians to provide more money to schools. Brown, desperate to eliminate competition that might confuse voters, merged his initial tax proposal into that of a rival group that wanted to tax the rich even...
  • Bill Clinton hears Gov. Jerry Brown's budget pain

    05/06/2012 9:15:47 AM PDT · by SmithL · 2 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 5/6/12 | Andrew S. Ross
    Bill Clinton feels Gov. Jerry Brown's pain. "I know what he's going through out here," said the former president after hearing Brown's litany of budget woes delivered at a conference of Bay Area business executives and public officials last week. "I said, 'How you doing, Jerry?' He said, 'This is tough.' I said, 'Yes, but I think you're doing the right thing. You have to live by the laws of economics and the money you've got.' " If it's any consolation, Clinton added, "the dilemmas that the governor and the Legislature, and the people who will soon vote on the...
  • Group submits signatures for California business tax change on November ballot

    05/05/2012 9:20:31 AM PDT · by SmithL · 11 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/5/12 | Jim Sanders
    The stage was set Friday for three revenue-raising measures to qualify for the November ballot after a group led by hedge-fund manager Tom Steyer submitted more than 900,000 signatures for a tax increase on out-of-state businesses. Proponents of two other tax initiatives, driven separately by Gov. Jerry Brown and civil rights attorney Molly Munger, said they have collected more than enough signatures to place their proposals before voters. The measures would generate billions in revenue for a state rocked by recession and cuts to education and public services in recent years. But Mitch Zak, spokesman for a coalition opposing Steyer's...
  • California governor warns water plan controversial

    05/05/2012 9:13:51 AM PDT · by SmithL · 11 replies
    SFGate: Capitol Notebook ^ | 5/5/12 | Marisa Lagos, Wyatt Buchanan
    Gov. Jerry Brown warned this week that his administration's soon-to-be unveiled plan to tackle the state's water delivery challenges is "going to be controversial" but vowed he would "push it through." Saying that state leaders have failed for five decades to ensure water reliability in the Golden State, Brown told a group of about 900 business leaders in San Jose Thursday that his administration would soon announce its preferred plan - widely expected to be two giant pipelines that move water out of the Sacramento River and under the fragile Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta to the Bay Area, Central Valley...
  • GOP vows to fight Jerry Brown's tax measure

    05/04/2012 9:03:31 AM PDT · by SmithL · 2 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 5/4/12 | Kevin Yamamura and David Siders
    After years of being labeled the "Party of No" by majority Democrats, California Republican leaders stood under rainy skies Thursday outside the Capitol to dub themselves the "Party of Yes." The newly christened party kicked off its campaign by asking for a "no" vote on Gov. Jerry Brown's tax hike. California Republican Party leaders organized the press conference to launch a statewide whistle-stop tour just as Brown finished collecting signatures for his $9 billion tax initiative. "Jerry Brown is turning in his signatures as we speak to make that (top tax rate) the highest rate in the country," said California...
  • California Governor's Mansion has a black cat mystery to solve

    04/28/2012 8:22:19 PM PDT · by nickcarraway · 13 replies
    The tour guides at the old Governor's Mansion in Sacramento are trying to solve a mystery, one that involves a black cat. One of the guides, John Casey, is the grandson of former Gov. Pat Brown, the last governor to live in the Victorian mansion at 16th and H streets, and therefore the nephew of the current governor, Jerry Brown. Casey was given the black ceramic cat by his aunt, former Treasurer Kathleen Brown, with a story that Pat Brown used it to denote whether his conversations with reporters at the mansion were on or off the record. If the...
  • Jerry Brown warns of more cuts to state budget

    04/25/2012 7:42:01 AM PDT · by SmithL · 10 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 4/25/12 | Andrew S. Ross
    The topic was "States and competitiveness in a global economy," but first off, the panel's moderator wanted Gov. Jerry Brown to give us a "sneak peek" at his 2012-13 budget revision, scheduled for next month. Brown demurred, but said, "It will be very interesting." In fact, "You'll hear howls of execration over the next 30 days," he told a gathering of Silicon Valley CEOs on Tuesday. That is, when he lays out additional cuts - watch out health and social services - beyond the $4 billion he's already asked for. Basically, some cuts that Brown wanted have been delayed by...
  • Jerry Brown glad death penalty measure on November ballot

    04/24/2012 12:34:55 PM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 4/24/12 | David Siders
    SAN JOSE - Gov. Jerry Brown, who has personal reservations about the death penalty but enforced it as state attorney general, said this morning that he is glad a measure to abolish the death penalty will be on the November ballot, though he declined to say how he will vote. . . . Brown vetoed death penalty legislation in 1977, when he was governor before. The Legislature overrode his veto, and he said during the 2010 gubernatorial campaign that he would uphold it as governor.
  • Don't trust Democrats to fix Nadia Lockyer mess

    04/24/2012 9:14:45 AM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 4/24/12 | Chip Johnson
    It's easy to dismiss the dramatic fall of Alameda County Supervisor Nadia Lockyer as the failings of an addict. But it was much more than that. A system - our political system - created her. Our political system allows one person, like state Treasurer Bill Lockyer, to run for a statewide office, collect millions of dollars in donations and then bestow those funds like a kingmaker in lower-level races - like a county supervisor's race. Our system here in Alameda County allows one party - the Democratic Party - to declare for the rest of us who should be in...
  • Jerry Brown's up to his old say-anything tricks

    04/17/2012 1:01:07 PM PDT · by SmithL · 2 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 4/17/12 | Dan Walters
    Two years ago, when Jerry Brown was trying to reclaim the governorship he had left 28 years earlier, he often said that his age, maturity and lack of political ambition would allow him to succeed where others had failed. Brown said he would patiently attack the state's political issues, especially the deficit-ridden state budget, and "I will tell the truth in ways (that hadn't occurred) in years past." Those "years past" included his own first governorship, when Brown developed a reputation for saying whatever sounded politically advantageous at the moment, regardless of how it may have differed from what he...
  • What effect would proposed tax increases really have?

    04/15/2012 7:35:01 AM PDT · by SmithL · 8 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 4/15/12 | Dan Walters
    Over the coming months of gestation about taxation, California voters will be inundated with claims, counterclaims and other forms of propaganda. We still don't know how many major tax proposals will be on the November ballot. It'll be at least one, but whether it's the one that Jerry Brown, other Democratic politicians and labor unions want, or the one that civil rights attorney Molly Munger and the PTA want, is still unknown. Most likely, it'll be both. Brown, having merged his original tax proposal with one pushed by a left-wing coalition, now wants to hike sales taxes by a quarter-cent...
  • Jerry Brown says lawmakers need to 'man up' and cut California's budget

    04/14/2012 1:38:16 PM PDT · by SmithL · 22 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 4/14/12 | David Siders
    Gov. Jerry Brown urged the Legislature on Friday to "man up" and make spending cuts, acknowledging the state budget deficit is likely larger than he previously thought. The Democratic governor, in an interview on Bay Area talk radio station KGO (810 AM), said the deficit is "probably bigger now" than the $9.2 billion he estimated earlier this year. "We're trying to be as prudent as we can," Brown said. "That's why the Legislature has to man up, make the cuts and get some taxes and we'll make it." Democrats this year have resisted Brown's proposed cuts to social services and...
  • California revenues 4.2 percent shy in March

    04/10/2012 3:43:15 PM PDT · by SmithL · 15 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 4/10/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    As state leaders hope for a surprise uptick in revenues this spring, state Controller John Chiang reported Tuesday that California lagged last month by $233.5 million, or 4.2 percent. The state missed its target most in corporate income taxes, which were $125.8 million (8.2 percent) off the mark. Income taxes and sales taxes were each less than 2 percent behind Gov. Jerry Brown's revenue forecast. For the fiscal year that ends in June, the state is now trailing Brown's expectations by nearly $1.1 billion, or 1.9 percent.
  • Jerry Brown, unions agree to delay contract talks until after tax vote

    04/10/2012 8:15:48 AM PDT · by SmithL · 11 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 4/10/12 | Jon Ortiz
    Gov. Jerry Brown has agreed to extend the labor contracts of four state worker unions, pushing aside a potential obstacle to his quest for a tax increase later this year. The agreements affect roughly 24,000 state employees working under deals that expire July 1, extending their current terms for one more year. The governor's deals with labor are "mind-numbing," given the state's $9.2 billion deficit, said Senate GOP leader Bob Huff. The Diamond Bar Republican and three other GOP leaders last month put their names on a budget proposal that included cutting state workers' pay by about 5 percent. "It's...
  • Jarvis group launches 'Don't Sign the Petition' anti-tax campaign

    04/09/2012 9:08:55 PM PDT · by SmithL · 6 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 4/9/12 | David Siders
    Less than a week after Gov. Jerry Brown started using robotic telephone calls and mailers to gather signatures for his ballot initiative to raise taxes, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association plans to launch its anti-tax campaign today on the conservative "John and Ken" talk radio show. The taxpayers group this morning posted a red banner on its website inviting viewers to join a "Don't Sign the Petition" campaign. The banner links to a campaign website opposing Brown's effort to raise the state sales tax and income taxes on California's highest earners.
  • Is bait-and-switch any way to build a railroad?

    04/03/2012 1:06:18 PM PDT · by landsbaum · 4 replies
    Imagine you sign a contract to put down $9,000 on a $340,000 house situated on a beachfront in Laguna with a closing date of 12 months from now. Then imagine that a few months later, the seller tells you he has some changes to your contract. Your beachfront Laguna house will be located in Brawley, instead. And instead of $340,000, your house in Brawley will cost you $980,000. Just a technical change in the contract, the seller says. And, oh, by the way, your sale won’t close in 12 months, it’ll take a bit longer, 26 months instead of 12...
  • Gov. Brown looks to global warming fees to pay for high-speed rail ("Better, faster, cheaper")

    04/03/2012 9:11:23 AM PDT · by NormsRevenge · 11 replies
    Mercury News ^ | 4/3/12 | Mike Rosenberg and Paul Rogers
    With a lower price tag and speedier plan to start zipping bullet trains up and down California, Gov. Jerry Brown's ambitious new high-speed rail proposal is still wobbly on one vital ingredient: billions and billions of dollars. The state still has no guarantee on where it will come up with about 80 percent of the funding needed for a project that high-speed rail leaders announced Monday will cost at least $68 billion. But bullet train backers are now touting a new wild card .. Anywhere from $2 billion to $14 billion a year could be in play for high-speed rail,...
  • Gov. Jerry Brown's administration wants health care change, with or without federal law

    03/30/2012 8:15:50 AM PDT · by SmithL · 15 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/30/12 | David Siders and Kevin Yamamura
    Gov. Jerry Brown's administration vowed Thursday to continue pushing forward elements of the federal health care overhaul in California, even if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes it down. If the court does rule the federal law unconstitutional, state Health and Human Services Secretary Diana Dooley said California should at least consider enacting its own universal health care legislation, including requiring every Californian to buy insurance. "I think that we should be committed to making this system more rational than it is today, and improving the health of the people of California," Dooley said in an interview. "If we ask the...
  • California Gov. Jerry Brown calling his plan a 'Millionaires' Tax'

    03/28/2012 1:49:52 PM PDT · by SmithL · 11 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/28/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    When Gov. Jerry Brown reached a tax compromise with the California Federation of Teachers and liberal activists, apparently their "Millionaires' Tax" slogan was included in the deal. Brown launched a new campaign website today whose front page calls the proposal a "Millionaires' Tax" even though it contains a quarter-cent sales tax increase and starts hiking income taxes at $250,000 for single filers and $500,000 for couples.
  • California legislative Democrats balk at Jerry Brown's budget cuts

    03/27/2012 8:17:41 AM PDT · by SmithL · 8 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/27/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    In a show of good faith one year ago, legislative Democrats slashed Medi-Cal, cut universities and reduced welfare grants to slice the state deficit 13 weeks before the constitutional deadline. But this year Democrats are refusing to go along with Gov. Jerry Brown's most controversial reductions, spurning his demand to have cuts in place by March. They oppose Brown's plan to halve the amount of time that unemployed adults can receive welfare-to-work benefits and to slash grants to children. Assembly Democrats have voted against his proposal to cut scholarship aid for 26,000 low-income students through higher grade requirements for Cal...
  • Anderson bill would cap state worker pay at Jerry Brown's salary

    03/19/2012 8:33:45 PM PDT · by SmithL · 19 replies · 1+ views
    SacBee: The State Worker ^ | 3/19/12 | Torey Van Oot
    Future state workers would say goodbye to the prospect of getting paid more than Gov. Jerry Brown under legislation pushed by a Republican state senator. Senate Bill 1368, by Sen. Joel Anderson, would set the top salary available to state workers and officers at the $173,987 annual paycheck currently approved for the state's top executive. "Salaries should be tied to the actual duties and responsibilities of the position," the Alpine Republican said in a statement. "Only highly paid bureaucrats can rationalize why their responsibilities are of greater importance than the Governor of a state with 38 million citizens." The cap...
  • Jerry Brown 2.0 finds it tough going

    03/18/2012 8:41:41 AM PDT · by SmithL · 37 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/18/12 | Dan Walters
    Does Jerry Brown ever haul his almost 74-year-old body out of bed in the morning, look in the mirror and ask himself why he ever had the notion of running for governor again, three decades after leaving the job? If he did, he'd probably never admit it. But Brown 2.0 clearly has found that governing California in the 21st century is more difficult than the scenario he painted for voters in 2010 – that his experience and professionalism would succeed where others had failed. Last year, he excoriated Republicans for not allowing voters to decide whether taxes should be raised...
  • Jerry Brown's tax plan breaks faith with California

    03/18/2012 8:31:14 AM PDT · by SmithL · 9 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 3/18/12 | Debra J. Saunders
    Gov. Jerry Brown likes to talk about "loyalty to California." For Brown, that means that public people should put aside their partisan interests to do what is best for the Golden State. Last week, Brown failed his own loyalty test. He agreed to a deal to put a tax-increase measure on the November ballot when he has to know that the new measure exacerbates California's dysfunctional finances. Brown's been trying to get a measure on the ballot ever since he was elected. This year, he proposed a "temporary" tax-increase measure for the November ballot. The five-year Brown plan would have...
  • Budget analyst: Tax revenue less than Jerry Brown projects

    03/17/2012 8:10:39 AM PDT · by SmithL · 19 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 3/17/12 | David Siders
    Two days after Gov. Jerry Brown announced a compromise ballot measure to raise taxes, California's top budget analyst said today that the measure will generate $2.2 billion less next year than Brown has estimated. The nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office estimated in its review of the measure that the tax increase would generate $6.8 billion in fiscal 2012-13. Brown had estimated raising some $9 billion. The tax initiative, a compromise Wednesday between the Democratic governor and the California Federation of Teachers, would increase the state sales tax less than Brown originally proposed, but include a larger tax increase on California's highest...
  • Big hazard for Jerry Brown's new tax plan

    03/16/2012 7:43:45 AM PDT · by SmithL · 21 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/16/12 | Dan Walters
    During a stream-of-consciousness speech to a gathering of police chiefs this week, Jerry Brown noted that during his first governorship, personal income taxes generated about a third of the state's revenue, but since have become a dominant source. The result, he continued, was "more volatility" in the state's revenue, which resulted in "a more or less constant state" of deficits. That's absolutely correct. When income taxes spike upward, politicians and voters squander windfalls on difficult-to-lower spending, and when they plummet – as they always eventually do – the state is then left with multibillion-dollar gaps. Brown told the top cops...
  • Jerry Brown changes his tax plan to address concerns of liberal allies

    03/15/2012 1:49:44 PM PDT · by SmithL · 6 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/15/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    After a months-long feud with his most liberal allies, Gov. Jerry Brown compromised Wednesday to eliminate a rival tax initiative for the November ballot. The new proposal Brown forged with the California Federation of Teachers and left-leaning activists would rely more on taxing the rich to raise an estimated $9 billion for California's budget. The Democratic governor tried with little success to knock CFT's rival tax on millionaires off the November ballot. With a negotiating window closing fast because of the election calendar, state leaders and the teachers group struck an eleventh-hour deal to put their unified plan before voters....
  • Brown appears resigned to a ballot full of tax proposals

    03/12/2012 5:31:59 PM PDT · by SmithL · 4 replies · 1+ views
    Inside Bay Area ^ | 3/12/12 | Steven Harmon, Bay Area News Group
    Gov. Jerry Brown sounded resigned to facing competition with his tax proposal on November’s ballot in comments he made Monday to the Police Chief’s Association and to reporters afterward. Proponents of two other proposals, the California Federation of Teachers’ so-called Millionaire’s tax and wealthy civil rights attorney Molly Munger’s broad-based tax for schools, have rejected Brown’s entreaties to back off and are actively gathering signatures to get on the ballot. That’s forced Brown to take his case to the public, arguing before editorial board meetings and various groups that his is the only plan that tames the deficit and seeks...
  • Cost of Moonbeam Express soars ever higher

    03/08/2012 10:31:52 AM PST · by landsbaum · 5 replies ^ | 3-8-2012 | Orange County Register editorial boarad
    California's high-speed rail project has been plagued with cost increases, delays and political shenanigans since 2008, when voters authorized $9.9 billion in bonds to help pay for it. Unsurprisingly, recent weeks have brought more of the same. The independent Legislative Analyst now says the state must repay more than $700 million annually if bonds are sold to build an initial 130-mile Central Valley route. Ultimately, the plan would link San Diego and San Francisco. But to get $3.3 billion in federal funds, train authorities agreed to put the first tracks where populations are sparse, rather than in densely populated areas...
  • Gov. Brown's taxes costly, less popular

    03/09/2012 1:46:46 PM PST · by landsbaum · 10 replies
    The Orange County Register ^ | 3-8-2012 | Orange County Register editorial boarad
    The huge tax increases proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown are becoming much less popular as voters learn more about them. At the rate of decline in popularity over just the past two months, there may be no one left in California who will vote for the higher taxes by the time November balloting arrives, save, of course, Mr. Brown and the principal beneficiaries, public employee union members to whom he panders. Meanwhile, an analysis by the state Board of Equalization, which handles state business taxes, has weighed the impact of the governor's higher taxes and found them quite costly. The...
  • Jerry Brown predicts ongoing budget problems, "finger-pointing" if his tax measures fails

    03/09/2012 8:01:19 AM PST · by SmithL · 15 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/9/12 | David Siders and Kevin Yamamura
    Gov. Jerry Brown said Thursday he is racing to clear the November ballot of two rival tax initiatives because failure will lead to severe ongoing budget problems and Democratic blame-trading. "If we get down the road and there are no taxes," he said, "there's going to be a lot of finger-pointing." The Democratic governor, who proposes to raise the state sales tax and income taxes on California's highest earners, said a proposed tax on millionaires would attract many of the same people who might otherwise support his plan, splitting the vote and likely leaving both measures to fail. "That would,...
  • California enforces death penalty without penalty

    03/08/2012 8:06:48 AM PST · by SmithL · 9 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 3/8/12 | Debra J. Saunders
    While running for governor in 2010, Jerry Brown admitted he would "rather have a society where we didn't have to use death as a punishment." But because the Legislature and California voters approved capital punishment, "we've got to make it work." With 725 condemned inmates living on San Quentin's Death Row but no executions since January 2006, I asked Gov. Brown at a Chronicle editorial board meeting Tuesday if California's death penalty is working. "It's working according to the Constitution of the United States, I can tell you that," Brown answered. No, it's not working. The U.S. Supreme Court has...
  • No love lost between Gov. Jerry Brown and Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (VIDEO)

    03/07/2012 5:39:22 PM PST · by SmithL · 4 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | 3/7/12 | Marisa Lagos
    Gov. Jerry Brown was at the Chronicle Tuesday for an editorial board meeting (mostly to sell his tax plan), and we asked him about how Gavin Newsom is doing in the number two, largely ceremonial, spot of lieutenant governor. The two former Bay Area mayors, you may remember, have a rocky past (in part because of personality, and in part because Newsom also had his sights set on the governor’s office two years ago before dropping out of the race) .“I think he’s well within the tradition,” Brown said when asked whether he’s satisfied with the job Newsom has done.Ouch....
  • Jerry Brown: No innocent inmates on death row

    03/07/2012 5:34:16 PM PST · by SmithL · 17 replies
    SFGate: Token Conservative ^ | 3/7/12 | Debra J. Saunders
    <p>Jerry Brown came to the Chronicle editorial board where he made a compelling argument as to why two competing tax measures vying for the November ballot should be scrapped so that his measure can stand a better chance of passing. I used the occasion to ask Brown about the death penalty in California. Brown, a former Attorney General, said that there are no innocent inmates on California’s death row.</p>
  • This year's California state budget could be bizarre exercise

    03/07/2012 7:53:19 AM PST · by SmithL · 10 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 3/7/12 | Dan Walters
    Political machinations over the state budget dominate every legislative session, but this year's version of the annual budget game may be particularly bizarre due to a confluence of unusual factors, to wit: • Not only is it an election year, but incumbents and aspirants will be running in districts that have been altered, sometimes hugely, by the state's new redistricting commission. • This is also the first year for a new election system in which the top two finishers in the June primary, regardless of party, will face each other in November. • Legislators briefly lost their salaries last year...
  • Jerry Brown calls massive protest sign of broader frustration

    03/05/2012 4:14:04 PM PST · by SmithL · 11 replies
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 3/5/12 | David Siders
    As hundreds of students continued to protest cuts to higher education at the state Capitol this afternoon, Gov. Jerry Brown said in a prepared statement that the students reflect the frustration of millions of Californians. About 350 of the thousands of demonstrators who descended on the Capitol this morning remain inside the building. About 200 protesters gained entry to the Capitol rotunda before California Highway Patrol officers blocked entrances to the area, leaving others to shout from the hallways. "The students today are reflecting the frustrations of millions of Californians who have seen their public schools and universities eroded year...
  • Assembly Democrats reject Gov. Jerry Brown's welfare cuts

    02/29/2012 6:51:02 PM PST · by SmithL · 11 replies · 1+ views
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 2/29/12 | Kevin Yamamura
    In a hearing that included testimony from children as young as 6 years old, an Assembly budget panel on Wednesday rejected Gov. Jerry Brown's welfare-to-work cuts. The Assembly's health and human services budget subcommittee voted 3-1 along party lines against cutting grant levels and eliminating adults after 24 months, instead of 48, if they cannot find work. Brown had counted on CalWORKs cuts to save $946 million to help close a deficit he estimates at $9.2 billion. The state has reduced welfare benefits since the recession, such as shrinking the adult time limit from 60 months to 48 months and...
  • SEIU director tells Jerry Brown's tax-plan rivals to step aside

    02/29/2012 6:11:20 PM PST · by SmithL · 5 replies · 2+ views
    SacBee: Capitol Alert ^ | 2/29//12 | Kevin Yamamura
    Powerful labor leader David Kieffer says proponents of tax measures competing with Gov. Jerry Brown's measure should get out of the way. Kieffer, head of Service Employees International Union California, has begun breaking his union's silence on Brown's tax plan after the group had quietly pledged support weeks ago. "I think people do really feel like he's the adult in the room who would take the resources that the state voters have given him and be prudent with it," Kieffer said in a recent interview. "I think they have a really good feeling that this is the guy who goes...
  • Jerry Brown's budget plan looks like a pipe dream

    02/28/2012 7:46:24 PM PST · by SmithL · 4 replies
    Sacramento Bee ^ | 2/28/12 | Dan Walters
    For the past two months, Gov. Jerry Brown has been selling the concept that were the Legislature to approve his proposed budget and voters to approve his tax increase, the state's fiscal house would be repaired. It's turning out to be more a pipe dream than a realistic plan. The courts and the Obama administration are stalling, perhaps permanently, many of the spending cuts that the 2011-12 budget had assumed. A Legislature controlled by Brown's fellow Democrats is refusing to jump-start more health and welfare reductions in his 2012-13 budget. Controller John Chiang has reported that spending is running $2.5...