Posts Tagged ‘California’

8th November
written by Sean Noble

“What’s your favorite season?”  For whatever reason, I have never really liked that question.  I think it’s because I always felt conflicted among Spring, Summer and Fall (Winter would never make my list).

I felt like I should say Spring, because it was the long anticipated break from Winter (I lived in fairly cold and snowy climes from age 5 to 21).  I felt like I should say Summer because of baseball and fishing.

In my heart, I really knew Fall was my favorite.  That acceptance and realization that I could actually say it came the Fall after I turned 19.  I was in Indiana and the leaves were had turned and were starting to really cover the ground.  I happened to hear the song “California Dreamin’” and it seemed totally appropriate.

So, I’m really enjoying my favorite season.

20th February
written by Sean Noble

It didn’t take long for Americans for Tax Reform to react to the California budget deal, made possible by State Senator Abel Maldonado, who had previously signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge.  Here is an excerpt from ATR’s press release:

Early today the California Senate passed a budget agreement that will raise taxes by $70 billion. Sen. Abel Maldonado (R-Santa Maria) provided the deciding vote. The California Assembly approved the deal shortly thereafter.

In approving this massive tax increase Sen. Maldonado has violated a written promise he made to Californians that he would “oppose any and all efforts to raise taxes.” Other Golden State lawmakers who broke this same commitment today include Sen. Dave Cogdill (R-Modesto), Sen. Roy Ashburn (R-Bakersfield), Assemblyman Mike Villines (R-Clovis) and Assemblyman Anthony Adams (R-Hesperia).

“It is a truly sad day for California taxpayers,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “It is never good when a politician breaks a promise to constituents, but it is unconscionable when a broken promise results in a $70 billion tax hike in the middle of a recession .”

19th February
written by Sean Noble

Remember the name Sen. Abel Maldonado.  He was the final Republican vote needed to break the budget impasse in the California State Senate, by joining two other Republican Senators in supporting the budget deal.   I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets nicknamed Abel “Specter” Maldonado in honor of U.S. Senator Arlen Specter joining two other Republicans to pass Obama’s stimulus bill.

Once difference between Maldonado and Specter, is that Maldonado claims to be a conservative – and appears to have voted such in the past.  Here is an excerpt of Maldonado’s bio from his website:

During his Assembly tenure Abel was named Hero of the Taxpayer by the Americans for Tax Reform… Now as the State Senator for the 15th District, Abel… is making the same commitment. During his campaign, Abel made very simple promises, “I will never forget where I come from, I will never forget whose money government spends – it’s the people’s money and I will never let the people down.”  Abel’s track record has proven that he is a man of his word and there is no doubt that he will keep those promises to the people of California.

My guess is that some folks are now going to question Maldonado’s claim of being “a man of his word.”  You can bet that Grover Norquist at Americans for Tax Reform will have something to say about it.

As I wrote a couple days ago, California’s mess could work to Arizona’s benefit.  Here is one of the comments on the Sacramento Bee website under the story about the budget deal.

Well, that does it. I am OUT OF HERE. This state apparently wants me only for my tax money. It has collected over $150K in income taxes alone over the last 15 years, and I’ve had it. Despite very high tax rates, traffic is still awful, you can’t get anywhere on our public transportation “system,” and the schools are still awful. Maybe this state can get other suckers to come in and support the illegals and other freeloaders. All I know is that they won’t have my tax money anymore.

That is exactly the kind of guy I want moving from California to Arizona.  Let’s roll out the welcome mat.

17th February
written by Sean Noble

There is no question that the budget mess we are in here in Arizona rivals any state in the nation.  We have the largest deficit as a percentage of our budget than any other state.  The good news is that we haven’t fallen into the trap (yet) of trying to tax our way out of it.

California is trying to pass a budget, but they haven’t been able to because Republican legislators are holding firm on opposing a $14 BILLION tax increase as a part of the package. With the impending layoffs of more than 10,000 state employees in California, I would guess they will get a budget out today or tomorrow – someone is going to break to the pressure.

Unfortunately for California, that will not fix their long-term problem.  They are already losing population as a result of their fiscal policies that squeeze the middle class to the point of literally driving them out of the state.

Which means that California’s loss may be Arizona’s gain.  If Governor Brewer and the Legislature deal with the 2010 budget mess in a constructive way, Arizona could be a magnet for businesses and individuals (many from California) which could help us grow our way out of the fiscal crisis in the mid-term and long term.  No, it won’t help the short term, that is still going to be very painful, but if Arizona avoids gouging individual taxpayers and businesses, we can make significant strides to dealing with our housing crisis and budget shortfalls.

Let’s do the right thing and put out the welcome mat.