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Katy Grimes

Transgender bathroom and sports bill: Who is confused?

Transgender students in California will now have the right to use whichever bathrooms they prefer, and participate in either the girls’ or boys’ programs and sports teams, because of monumental legislation signed by Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday.

AB 1266 by Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, D-San Francisco, amends the state’s education code, and requires that in addition to accessing the bathrooms of their choosing, each student will have access to sports teams, and programs “consistent with his or her gender identity,” rather than the student’s biological gender.

A boy who self-identifies as female could use the girls’ bathroom, even if he is anatomically male.

Do you see a problem with this?

Imagine a hormonal middle school or high school-aged boy who just wants the cheap thrill of looking at girls undressing in the locker room, or taking showers. (This would be just about every 13-year-old boy)

The libidinous lad will now be able to claim he is really a transgender.

So, for a few days he dons a dress, jewelry and makeup, and uses the girls’ bathrooms and locker room.When the gig is up, and his face breaks out from the makeup,… Read More

Katy Grimes

Fracking survives CA Legislature — for now

SACRAMENTO — After sitting through several recent marathon sessions in the Assembly, it was shocking to witness the powerful California environmental lobby lose its attempt to ban oil and gas hydraulic fracturing.

For this, Californians can be thankful.

That got me thinking. What if California’s powerful environmental lobby had been as powerful during the 1849 Gold Rush as it is today? Back then, they would have harassed gold pioneer James Marshall so much he would have quit. California never would have become the Golden State.

Hydrolic fracking for oil and gas has the potential to become the next Gold Rush — this time of black gold, Texas tea. But will the environmentalists stop it? Not yet — but maybe in the future.

A University of Southern California study, “Powering California: The Monterey Shale & California’s Economic Future,” looked at the development of the vast energy resource beneath the San Joaquin Valley known as the Monterey Shale. It found that hydraulic fracturing could create 512,000 to 2.8 million new jobs, personal income growth of $40.6 billion to $222.3… Read More

BOE Member George Runner

Success of Budget Hinges on Taxpayer Decisions

The Legislature should be commended for approving an on-time budget and exercising some measure of restraint.

However, the success of this budget hinges on the decisions of a very small number of overtaxed Californians, their continued presence in California and their success in the stock market.

According to the Franchise Tax Board, the highest one percent of income earners will pay more than $2 billion less in 2013 than 2012. That’s not surprising. A recent survey found 75 percent of affluent Californians are planning actions to reduce their tax liabilities—and a quarter are considering moving out-of-state.

It’s troubling that the volatile personal income tax accounts for 63 percent of budget revenue. Just one percent of California taxpayers now provide nearly half of all income tax payments the state receives.

You can’t tax your way to prosperity. To create true budget stability, California must attract jobs and investment to our state rather than drive them away.… Read More

Katy Grimes

Corbett bill would end independent union audits

A bill written and sponsored by the union labor group State Building and Construction Trades Council of California, appears to be an effort to eliminate from monitoring and enforcing prevailing wage laws through independent compliance audits and enforcement of building contractors.

SB 776 by Sen. Ellen Corbett, D-San Leandro, will be heard today in the Assembly Labor and Employment Committee. This should be interesting.

According to the non-union California Construction Compliance Group, the audits always find labor violations, and particularly those involving employee prevailing wage requirements. It’s ironic that the prevailing wage is supported entirely by unions, but it’s usually union contractors which violate this rule and do not pay prevailing wage to construction workers.

Once an audit is completed, employees receive substantial amounts of back wages they were cheated out of through fraudulent labor practices, or just sheer incompetence by the contractor employers.

If the wages were underpaid due to fraud, the State of California Labor Commissioner assesses fines and penalties on the employer commensurate with the level of fraud or… Read More

BOE Member George Runner

Will Fire Fee 2.0 Be Six Times Worse?

Better late than never, California lawmakers seem to be waking up to the reality that the illegal “Fire Prevention Fee” they enacted nearly two years ago is a complete fiasco. Even so, they are refusing to repeal it. Instead they are scheming up ways to replace the tax with yet another tax that’s even bigger than the first.

Where else but Sacramento would someone think the answer to a bad tax is to replace it with one even worse?

Assemblyman Wes Chesbro, who represents many rural taxpayers on California’s North Coast, is leading the charge to reinvent and expand the fire fee. His proposal (AB 468) would replace the fire fee with a 4.8 percent “surcharge” on all insured homeowners and businesses in the State of California, regardless of location.

A similar concept was proposed by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2009 but was rejected by the Legislature.

These payments, averaging $48 per policy and totaling an estimated $480 million per year, would find their way to a “Disaster Management, Preparedness, and Assistance Fund.” The fund would benefit bureaucracies, like Cal Fire, that are involved in the state’s disaster preparedness… Read More

Katy Grimes

Does Munger hunger for ‘Gov. Maldonado?’

Abel Maldonado is running for Governor. Groan.

Only a few years ago as a state senator, Maldonado, a Republican, sold taxpayers down the river when he provided the key vote for the $13 billion tax increase of then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. He did this after promising he would never increase taxes.

As a reward, Schwarzenegger appointed Maldonado to the vacant seat of lieutenant governor. But Abel seemed unable to acquire the confirmation of his colleagues. He’s not exactly liked in political circles. He finally prevailed, and settled in comfortably to the most useless office in the state.

But someone likes the sound of “Gov. Maldonado.”

“Charles T. Munger Jr. confirmed Friday that he plans to contribute an undisclosed amount to a committee Maldonado is opening to explore a gubernatorial bid, but said he is refraining from endorsing any of the possible… Read More

Katy Grimes

Legislature uses anti-gun laws as diversion

How convenient. Instead of focusing on criminals released the last two years under AB 109 and now committing new crimes, the California Legislature is diverting citizens’ attention by taking up gun control. AB 109 was the prison “diversion” law that dumped thousands of criminals from state prisons onto local jails, many subsequently being released into the general public.

A hearing in the Assembly Public Safety committee Tuesday advanced the diversion while making the majority Democrats seem “tough on crime.”

The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence was one group that testified at Tuesday’s hearing. It advocates more gun control, while saying, “We all deserve to live in communities free from the fear and threat of gun violence.”

For a group to make such a definitive statement about public safety, there is oddly nothing on its website about… Read More

Katy Grimes

Caltrans director about to be quietly reconfirmed

Caltrans is an agency in trouble. The most recent buffoonery involves putting California motorists at risk, with the 30 broken bolts discovered on the newly renovated San Francisco Bay Bridge. And apparently Caltrans knew about this.

A recently released report from the California League of Cities , California State Association of Counties and other transportation organizations found only 56 percent of California’s local streets and roads were deemed to be in “good” condition, and 49 of the state’s 58 counties were rated “At Risk” or in “Poor’ condition.

“By ‘streets and roads,’ the report is also referring to bridges and essential components like sidewalks, storm drains, curbs and traffic signs,” the AllGov California website… Read More

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