February 6, 2012 archive

Who is Bankrolling Governor Jerry Brown’s November Tax Initiative?


Gov. Jerry Brown discusses the cuts he has already made to help reduce the state’s budget deficit as he unveiled his proposed $92.5 billion 2012-13 state budget at a Capitol news conference in Sacramento, Calif. While most other governors are proposing tax cuts and letting temporary tax increase expire, Brown is trying make the case for boosting taxes on the wealthy and the state sales tax

California Governor Jerry Brown reports that he has raised $1.7 million for his November tax increase initiative.

Gov. Jerry Brown’s campaign reported Tuesday that it has raised $1.7 million for his proposed November ballot initiative to raise California’s sales and income taxes temporarily to help solve the state’s ongoing budget deficits.

The largest donor was the California Hospitals Committee, which gave $500,000. A building trades union, the American Beverage Association and Occidental Petroleum each gave $250,000 to the campaign, which is still collecting signatures to qualify for the November ballot. Several American Indian tribes and affiliated groups also made contributions.

In all, the committee raised $1.2 million in 2011, according to campaign finance reports filed Tuesday with the secretary of state’s office. Brown’s campaign has reported taking in another 500,000 in January.

Here is the list.

Scott Lay over at the Nooner has a handy-dandy list that shows the big donors and their stake in increasing California sales taxes for everyone and income taxes for the “rich” – of course temporarily.

  • California Hospital Association – $500,000 (opposes health insurance rate regulation – AB 52, Medi-Cal reimbursement cuts)
  • Gaming tribes – $375,000 (interested in compact renewal)
  • American Beverage Association – $250,000 (opposes soda taxes – AB 669 last year)
  • Occidental Petrolium – $250,000 (opposes oil severance tax)
  • KP (Kaiser Permanente) Financial Services – $250,000 (opposes health insurance rate regulation)
  • State Building Trades Council – $250,000 (wants high speed rail)
  • Blue Shield of California – $100,000 (opposes health insurance rate regulation)

So, what does Governor Brown propose to do?

The Democratic governor wants to ask voters to raise the statewide sales tax by half a cent for four years and boost the income tax rate on those making $250,000 or more a year by as much as 2 percentage points for five years. The extra revenue would go toward K-12 education and to counties, primarily for housing lower-level offenders who used to be sentenced to state prison but are now going to county jails.

Early polls have shown support for this measure.

I mean, after all, a 1/2 cent increase in the sales tax is not likely to break anyone. And, the rich, who cares about them anyway – because they are rich.

Brown and the Dems will spin the campaign and instead of cutting back spending to balance the California State Budget, they will pass this measure with $ millions of campaign ads. They will warn about the schools and our “kids” being dramatically short changed, while kicking the financial armageddon of California down the road.

In the meantime, California special business interests will fund this nonsense, since they know what the Democratic Legislature and governor can and will do to them, if they do not pony up the campaign cash.

Save up your pennies, Californians, a tax increase is coming – remember it is only temporary!


Ventura City Councilman Neal Andrews to Announce for Ventura County Supervisor


Ventura City Councilman Neal Andrews, a Republican will announce his candidacy for Ventura County Supervisor on Wednesday.

From Facebook:

I will officially announce my candidacy for the Ventura County Board of Supervisors, District 1, on Wednesday, February 8th, at noon, on the steps of City Hall. Please join me if you can. I promise to be brief, but direct, as you know I can be. I hope you will be with me for the campaign ahead. Thank you, one and all, for your support. I appreciate it more than you can ever know.

Other candidates include:Ventura County Fire Chief Bob Roper of Ojai, Ventura Councilwoman Christy Weir and Brian Brennan, another Ventura council member is alos rumored to announcing soon.

The seat which represents Ventura and Ojai on the Board of supervisors is currently held by Steve Bennett who is vacating the seat to run for Congress.


Flap’s California Morning Collection: February 6, 2012


Dodger Stadium, Elysian Park, Los Angeles

The California Legislature is in session. Today’s schedule is here.

On to today’s California headlines:

California negotiating with banks over mortgage settlement

California is back at the negotiating table to potentially take part in a multi-state deal with the nation’s largest mortgage servicers over faulty foreclosure practices.

For months, Atty. Gen. Kamala D. Harris has not been involved in direct talks with the banks, walking out on negotiations last year. As recently as two weeks ago she called the potential $25-billion settlement inadequate for California. Winning the Golden State’s support of a settlement would strengthen it considerably, given the shear size of the state’s mortgage market.

“For the past 13 months we have been working for a resolution that brings real relief to the hardest-hit homeowners, is transparent about who benefits, and will ensure accountability,” Harris said in a statement Sunday night. “We are closer now than we’ve been before but we’re not there yet.”

A spokesman for the state attorney general’s office declined further comment. Monday looms as the deadline for individual states to either reject or accept a deal — though that deadline was originally last Friday and was pushed back to allow more time for negotiations.

Rick Caruso changes his party affiliation from Republican to Decline to State

Developer Rick Caruso has left the GOP, signaling he is increasingly serious about his potential run for mayor in an overwhelmingly Democratic city.

The lifelong Republican switched to decline-to-state in December.

“It reflects who I am,” Caruso said. “I have supported Democrats and Republicans and I am much more independent-minded. I don’t think either party has the right answers. I think that’s what a lot of people think in California.”

Los Angeles has only had one Republican mayor in the last four decades – Richard Riordan, who was generally considered a moderate.

Caruso is under no pressure to make an immediate announcement for mayor since he would finance his own campaign. Other candidates have to announce their decisions earlier because of fundraising and reporting deadlines.

Caruso also has one other major effort on his mind these days: buying the Dodgers. He has partnered with the team’s former general manager, Joe Torre, to form a group that is considered among the leading bidders to purchase the team from Frank McCourt.

“I believe we’re the team to beat,”

Ventura County voter rolls: Partisans’ share shrinks, independents’ climb

A year ago, Democrats held a 2.8 percentage point advantage among Ventura County voters. It has now fallen to 2.7 percentage points. In real numbers, the Democrats’ lead dropped by 1,256 voters. It wasn’t because Republicans gained, however — just that the GOP lost fewer voters than the Democrats did. Nonpartisan voters now make up 19 percent of the county’s voter roll.

California public employees among highest paid in country, firefighters at the top

Public employees in California were among the best paid in the nation in 2010, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau last week.

Full-time employees of state and local governments received an average of $5,774 in March 2010, which the Census Bureau used as a snapshot of worker pay. Only local public employees of Washington, D.C. were paid more, earning $5,900 on average during the same period.

Closely following California in worker pay were New Jersey, New York, and Washington state.

Enjoy your morning!


CA-26 Video: An Interview with Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks


Ventura County Supervisor and Congressional candidate Linda Parks

You can find the interview here.

With California State Senator Tony Strickland locking down the Republican Establishment endorsements and with Democrat Ventura County Supervisor Steve Bennett’s reluctance to withdraw from the race, Linda Parks may be the odd candidate out.

Watch Parks to try to attack Strickland, while her “real” opponent in the “top two” June primary election will be Bennett.


Flap’s California Blog @ Flap Twitter Updates for 2012-02-06


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