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FlashReport Weblog on California Politics

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Kevin Dayton

Pugnacious Defense of Economic Freedom in Orange County Can Inspire California’s Free-Market Activists

Californians whowant fiscally responsible governments and freedom of choicefor government contractors and their employees have another reason for dismay.

Construction union lobbyists are once again advancing their costlyagenda for local governmentsbeyond the corrupt and mismanaged urban centers of Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area.

In their latest move, union officials and their elected sycophantsare nowpushing formonopoly control of almost $1 billion in planned construction at Coast Community College District in Orange County (California).

This is not the firstinfiltration of government-mandatedProject Labor Agreementsinto Orange County. About a dozen years ago, union lobbyists managed to get control of the taxpayer-funded construction programs of three local governments: Orange County, Santa Ana Unified School District, and Rancho Santiago Community College District. In the case of Orange County, three Republican supervisors voted for it andaRepublican state legislatordefended it.

But California’s supporters of economic and personal freedom shouldnot be discouraged! This… Read More

Assemblyman Donald P. Wagner

Toe Tags for GOP Bills

As the current legislative session winds to a desultory close, I had the occasion recently to look back on the bills Republican Assembly Members had offered to make the state more business friendly. The sight was not a pretty one. Dead Republican bills littered the committee rooms and assembly floor. The local morgue does not have enough toe tags for all of the good, pro-jobs bills killed this year in Sacramento.

For example, the Republicans proposed several bills offering tax incentives to small businesses. Paul Cook’s AB 166 eliminated the yearly Minimum Franchise Tax on small businesses to make easier expansion and the hiring of new workers. If wholesale elimination was too much for the Democrats, then Martin Garrick offered AB 821 reducing that Minimum Franchise Tax from $800 to $100 for the second through tenth years of operation. If even that was too much, Mike Morrell proposed AB 368 to cut the tax for only the first six taxable years. And finally, if all else failed, Jim Silva had a bill, AB 831, to at least provide a break in the Minimum Franchise Tax to the few entrepreneurs who establish single member limited liability companies. No, no, no, no,… Read More