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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Katy Grimes


By Katy Grimes and Megan Barth

“Hands up don’t shoot” was a lie. The phony “Black Lives Matter” movement exists solely as atool for Democratsto create civil unrest and racial dividewhen they need votes and are recent,million dollar benefactorsof Beyonce and JZ.

Advocacy of violence against police and black racism… Read More

Lance Izumi

Key Brown Education Legacy Program Comes up Short

In his 2016 State of the State address, Governor Jerry Brown touted the centerpiece of his education agenda, the Local Control Funding Formula, which simplifies the way in which local school districts are funded.

Yet his key legacy program has experienced critical implementation problems and has exposed, once again, the fallacy of relying only on government-centric solutions to the state’s education problems.

The governor’s intentions in creating the Local Control Funding Formula, which was adopted by the state in 2013, were worthy. In his State of the State, he criticized the micromanagement of educators “through increasingly minute and prescriptive state and federal regulations.” With his LCFF program, he proclaimed, “California has led the country in the way it is returning control to local school districts.”

But simply shifting spending discretion from one level of government to another still means that government is in control of decision-making, with predictably bad results.

Prior to the enactment of the LCFF, funding California’s public schools was a complicated mix of general and restricted dollars,… Read More

Punishing Politically Incorrect Thought

A recent YouGov global survey, found that only 9.2% of Americans rate global warming as a top concern. In fact, the headline read the “U.S. among the least worried about climate change.” What to do? Well, sue someone, of course.

The Attorneys General of each state are supposed to use their powers to protect our constitutional rights, not restrict them. So, it is a surprise to learn that the Attorney General of California, Kamala D. Harris, is using her power to investigate those who she claims are climate skeptics.

News reports tell us that Harris, who is coincidently running for the U.S. Senate, is investigating whether Exxon Mobil Corp. lied to the public about global warming, and whether that amounts to securities fraud or violations of environmental laws. The New York Attorney General, Eric Schneiderman, is also investigating. Exxon’s response is that it “unequivocally” rejects the allegations… Read More

Ed Ring

California Initiative Would Require Legislators to Wear Logos of Donors

If youarebemused by the success of populist candidates for President, if you think national politics in America is at risk of becoming a circus spectacle, get ready. Because that circus is coming to California. Southern California businessman John Cox is collecting signatures for aballot initiativethat will require state politicians to wear the logos of their top ten campaign contributors.

If voters approve this measure, every time a state senator or member of the assembly votes on the floor or in a committee, they will have to wear these logos on their jackets. As the text of the initiative puts it, “the disclosureshall be printed clearly and legibly, be conspicuous and in a type sizesufficient that it can be read by a member of the public observing any public session of theLegislature or a Committee thereof.”

Truth is indeed stranger than fiction. But then again, isn’t Cox’s initiative just making explicit what everybody’s known for a very long time? As Cox puts it, “unions and corporations have too much power and it’s time we stand up and fight. The ‘California is Not For Sale… Read More

Katy Grimes

Gov. Brown Holding Road and Hwy Projects Hostage for Tax Votes

California state budgets no longer require a two-thirds vote of the Legislature to be passed, butthere are still budget games, deals and hinky promises that happen in the process.. However, tax increases do still require two-thirds vote.

This year, Gov. Jerry Brown had proposed tax increases – a gas tax hike, a road tax for miles driven, a car registration hike, and a health plan tax… to name a few.

In order to get these tax increases approved, Brown and his administration use arm-twisting and extortive tactics on lawmakers who show resistance.

In January, the California Transportation Commission sent a letter to all members of the California State Legislature, warning that because of a reduction decided by the Commission of $750 billion in state transportation projects over the next five years, many of the ongoing or new projects on… Read More

Richard Rider

CA state income tax rate is now 34% higher than the 2nd highest state — vs. “only” 21% higher in 2015

Bad news for California. Other states are dropping their state income tax rates for the well-to-do, making those states ever more attractive for wealthy folks — compared to the money-grabbing Golden State.

In 2015, CA was “only” 21% higher than the 2nd highest state — Hawaii. But starting in 2016 Hawaii has dramatically cut their top rate from 11% to 8.25%. A very liberal state, Hawaii’s politicians nevertheless figured out that it should welcome rich people rather than drive them away.

That locks in California’s “worst” rank among the 50 states. With our 13.3% top tax rate, we are now 34% higher than the 2ndhighest state. Oregon is #2, with a top rate of 9.9% — down from the 11% they charged a couple years ago.

Below is my updated summary of the CA income tax, as found in my constantly updating fact sheet comparing CA with the other 49 states. Note the update to the nation’s highest tax brackets(inbold):

Prior… Read More

Katy Grimes

‘Jock Tax’ is Ill-Gotten Revenue Windfall for California

Regardless what a punk Carolina Panthers’ quarterback Cam Newton may or may not be, the ugly news that he will owe $137,900 in taxes — for losing the Super Bowl – shouldn’t be the thanks he gets.

The thanks is courtesy of California’s highest-in-the-nation tax rate of 13.3 percent, known as the “jock tax” – the nonresident income taxes that states and cities enforce on athletes performing in their jurisdictions.

As Kurt Bedenhausen explained in Forbes last week, “Newton will pay California 86.3% of his Super Bowl earnings if the Panthers win. Losing means his effective tax rate will be a whopping 172.2%. Oh yeah, he will also pay the IRS 40.5% on his earnings.” This tax bill is based on Newton’s 2016 earnings of $20 million.


Sounding very Orwellian, California’s Franchise Tax Board website explains:

“The SportsRead More

Jon Coupal


Even if one lives in a cave, it’s hard to avoid the publicity surrounding the high profile presidential debates that are a reminder that this is an election year. And California taxpayers know, from hard experience, it also means that it is open season on taxpayers as local politicians rush to put tax increases on the ballot.

Emboldened by success in little publicized 2015 off-year elections in which 29 out of 40 local tax increase measures passed, scores of communities and special districts are seeing this year as an ideal opportunity to raise your taxes.

Presidential election years tend to bring out more voters, including many who do not pay close attention to what’s on the ballot until the last minute. These “low information voters” are a prime target of tax raisers because they are more easily convinced by simplistic arguments. These duplicitous arguments often tout the benefits of a measure to a community, without ever mentioning that it is a new tax. Or they minimalize the actual cost by expressing it in pennies per day, “It will only cost about 50 cents a day!”

To read the entire column click here:… Read More

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