It probably comes as no surprise to anyone that Governor Brown today renewed his call to smack working Californians and their families with increases in the state’s income, sales and car taxes (with a delay of implementation of the higher income taxes until next year). Fortunately I believe that the Governor’s request in this regard, both to place these taxes on a special election ballot, and his further request to actually vote to implement new taxes on sales and car taxes starting July 1st, are DOA with legislative Republicans.
Look, every Republican legislator to whom I have spoken is painfully aware of the difficulties that present themselves when there is a significant scarcity of resources to fund state government services and operations. But they also will point out that the recession is not just taking place inside of state government, but that the people of this state are going through extremely difficult economic times. Right now, the top priority of legislative Republicans is doing everything possible to spur on private sector job creation — which is largely about trying to get state government out of the way. Clearly increasing taxes on Californians is not going to create private sector jobs — quite the contrary, actually.
That having been said, I was quite pleased to see a section of the Governor’s May Revision entitled, “Reducing State Government.”
You can download the .PDF of this short, seven page section of the Governor’s full budget revision here: ReducingStateGovernmentDoc. While the total savings to taxpayers from the various proposals outlined in the Reducing State Government section are only projected at $82.7 million, it is all, from a cursory review, good stuff. Included in there, among other things, is the elimination of a bunch of state boards and commissions.
So let me just end this blog post with some “words of wisdom” to Republican legislators. As you take the opportunity to review the Governor’s proposal in its entirety, and in parts, if you decide to criticize items in the “Reducing State Government” section – you are officially OFF MESSAGE. This is all stuff for which the Governor should be praised, and which Democrat legislators should be encouraged to pass. Yes, there are individual constituency groups that will yell and scream about many of these boards and commissions being nuked — tell them to take a chill pill and to understand that everyone is having to do more with less.