Even with the largest budget on record, California cities and counties feel the need to ask for billions in additional taxes this year due to the majority party’s priorities. Meaning that the Democrat majority has again, failed to address the vital needs in communities across our state.
The local tax measures on this year’s ballot would add billions to the $250 billion Californians already pay in state and local taxes each year. Is it not enough? Is it not being allocated to the places where we need it most? Or are the Democrats just happier to let special interests lead them around by the nose and send taxpayers the bill?
Schools are a great example. Our schools deserve the best, and our counties and cities are asking voters to approve $24.63 billion in debt to make critical improvements. Democrats have failed to pursue smart reforms, and have actually worked to derail smart legislation in favor of special interests.
School District reserve cap reform never made it out of committee despite being brought up two years in a row and having bipartisan support. Lifting or removing the cap would allow school districts the ability to save money for a rainy day (think surviving 2008 cuts in future recessions) and for big projects that keep our kids in a healthy learning environment.
As our schools crumble, Democrats continue to ignore the need for reforms and instead push bad legislation and taxes, like Proposition 55, all for the sake of special interests. Looking at you health industry – we all know you are outspending everyone by millions because you’ll be getting up to $2 billion of the Prop. 55 “money for schools.”
Another great example, housing. Only half of Californians can actually afford a house. New local property taxes and bond repayments will continue to keep families from homeownership. Democrats should have thought about that before they shot down Brown’s CEQA streamline for affordable housing.
Without the crucial reforms proposed this year to increase affordable housing in California, most people will never know the dream of owning a home.
The Democrat majority has created the crisis we find ourselves in. Their choice to ignore the necessary legislative reforms that need to be made in favor of skating through another election with the help of special interest money has placed a heavy burden on our communities. Don’t expect this to be the last time we see additional taxes at the local level – someone has to pick up the Democrat slack.
Want to know what costs are coming to your door? Across the state there are 228 local tax measures and 193 local bond measures that carry the hefty price tag of $32 billion. The California Taxpayers Association has made the calls and crunched the numbers to issue this easy to read report.