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Katy Grimes

Schools Superintendent Horse Race Provides Stark Contrasts

Only ten months ago, I wrote a story about the California Schools chief who at that time announced he wanted to extend Proposition 30’s “temporary” taxes. Only one year into Proposition 30’s five-year life, Democratic State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson called for an extension ofthe 2012 ballot initiative.

Set to expire in 2018, Prop. 30 was sold to voters as a temporary tax.

Today, Torlakson has many Democrats lined up with him, pushing for the tax extension, essentially lying to the public.

The 2013 Brown budget plan blamed “economic uncertainty” as the result of “global economic developments that tempered investment” and “Hurricane Sandy.”

“’We need to renew Prop. 30,’ Torlakson, the state Superintendent of Public Instruction, said at a coffee meeting with local PTA leaders in a Sacramento home,” theSacramento Beereported in January.

TorlaksonRead More

Katy Grimes

Local ‘Thought Leaders’ Bamboozle Sac GOP on Measure L

I arrived home from a weekend away, lateSunday afternoon, to a robo-call phone message from the Sacramento County Republican Party Chairmantouting Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson’s “Strong Mayor,” Executive Mayor initiative. In the message, the Chairman told Republicans to vote “yes” on “Measure L.”

I was floored. Someone made a bargain with the devil.

Measure Lproposes the mayor as chief executive, responsible for the budget proposal, who chooses a city manager, and no longer will have a voting position on the city council.

Johnson, a Democrat, has modified the Executive Mayor plan four times since 2009, each rejected by citizens or voters. The idea of a strong mayor has some merit in some cities, but it is Johnson as the Strong Mayor that most people object to, as well as possible future liberal, elitist mayors. Johnson’s time as Mayor is not what he promised. He has instead spent his political capital on professional sports arenas and personal power, style over substance.

Johnson wants a “world class” arena because he is embarrassed by cowtown Sacramento, and wants… Read More

Katy Grimes

De Leon: Reliance is the ‘American Way’

In some California parallel universe, the new Senate President Kevin de Leόn, announced last week during his flagrant swearing-in ceremony, “Reliance is the ‘American Way.’”

“Isn’t it time we shatter the great American myth about pulling oneself up by the bootstraps?” De Leonasked the crowd.The audience broke into rousing applause. De Leon continued, “It’s a fantasy. It’s simply not true.”

De Leon’s “extravagant bash” was held at the Disney Concert Hall where “corporate interests — oil, telecommunications, pharmaceuticals and others who lobby Sacramento — paid for the $50,000 bash through the Latino Legislative Caucus Foundation. National Review Online called the bash a “… Read More

Katy Grimes

Reactions to Sac Bee Columnist’s Love Letter to Steinberg

Sacramento Bee News Columnist Marcos Breton wrote a love letterSunday Oct. 11, to outgoing Democratic Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg: “An argument could be made that Darrell Steinberg is the most accomplished politician Sacramento has produced in nearly a century,” Breton said.

With a legacy of special interest legislation, a delayed statewide water bond full of pork and wasteful spending, support of the $100 billion High-Speed Rail bungle, his dubious law firm connections, his mental health millionaire’s tax, the special interest bill he helped pass for the billionaire owners of the Sacramento Kings, and multiple, serious Senate scandals under his watch as Pro Tem, Steinberg may instead have a well-documented legacy of collusion, malfeasance, nepotism, and… Read More

Katy Grimes

A Reality Check For “Environmentalists”

Immediately following Gov. Jerry Brown signing the bill by Sen. Alex Padilla to ban the use of plastic bags at grocery stores and tax paper bags, now the progressive left is whining about the plastic bag industry initiating a referendum process for a vote of the people for the November 2016 election.

The Sacramento Bee editorial board compared the plastic bag industry to a chicken with its head curt off: “It would explain why it hasn’t figured out that the ubiquitous single-use plastic grocery bag has just suffered a killing blow. Its days are numbered.”

And the Bee editors are still calling these plastic bags, “single use bags.” Perhaps all of the people who insist these bags are “single use” are the people who throw them out after just one use, rather than use them a second or third use at the grocery store. Do they instead purchase expensive plastic… Read More

Katy Grimes

Santa Barbara County, A Tale of Two Californias, And A Future Of Less Energy

We’ve all heard about the 6-states initiative, and the State of Jefferson secession proposal, however, there are really two Californias:

There is the liberal elite state, run by the environmental oligarchy, which makes our political policy; and There is everyone else – the upper working middle class, the very middle class, the working class, the working poor, and those living in abject poverty.

Santa Barbara County is a microcosm of the two Californias –

the North County, which is primarily working class and relatively poor, with a large Hispanic population; and the South County, which is relatively wealthy, white, with high-paying white collar, jobs, high tech jobs, and academia.

As if the divide isn’t enough already, Measure P, put on the ballot bythe Water GuardiansofSanta Barbara County, is masquerading as a ban on hydraulic fracturing, while the initiative would actually result in shutting down the onshore oil and gas industry in Santa Barbara County, according to COLAB President Andy Caldwell.… Read More

BOE Member George Runner

Lumber Tax Cut for Small Businesses Becomes Law

Legislation I proposed to ease the burden of a lumber tax on small businesses has become law.

Assembly Bill 2031, authored by Assemblyman Brian Dahle (R-Bieber), passed the Legislature with bipartisan support and was signed by Governor Brown on September 29, 2014.

In 2012, the Legislature enacted AB 1492, which imposed a 1% assessment on lumber and engineered wood products. Unfortunately, the bill did not allow an exemption for qualified businesses that have little or no sales of wood products, causing many retailers to needlessly file returns.

AB 2031 fixes this problem by exempting businesses that sell less than $25,000 in lumber or engineered wood from paying the 1% Lumber Products Assessment. This will save nearly 1,000 businesses the hassle of separately reporting lumber sales to the Board of Equalization.

The legislation was sponsored by the State Board of Equalization and received support from the California Retailers Association, the California Forestry Association, CalTax and many small business owners.

In his… Read More

Katy Grimes

Gov. Brown Bans Plastic Bags, Taxes Paper, and Encourages Bacteria

The back room deal between the California Grocers Association andUnited Food and Commercial Workers labor union paid off; Gov. Jerry Brown signed the bill to ban and tax plastic and paper grocery bags… despite that all types of plastic shopping bags can be recycled into new bags.

SB 270by Senators Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles Alex Padilla, D- Pacoima, and Ricardo Lara, D-Los Angeles, “prohibits stores from distributing lightweight, single-use plastic bags.” Padilla is running for Secretary of State.

Immediately after the bill signing, the American Progressive Bag Alliance announced it was preparing to gather signatures for a November 2016 ballot initiative to repeal SB 270.

Governor Jerry Brown has repeatedly said, “There will be no new taxes for the foreseeable future.” But the plastic bag ban is also a tax increase on reusable bags, and paper bags — minimum 10 cents per bag — which grocers will pocket.

I remember when plastic bags were… Read More

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