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Posts Tagged ‘California’

Taxes and the Pyrite State

Posted by Dana Pico on 2013/01/13

From

Jerry Brown: California Will Have Surpluses

That’s what he says:

After years of red ink, Gov. Jerry Brown said on Thursday that California’s $96.7-billion general fund is now poised to end next year with a surplus, thanks to years of deep budget cuts and billions in new taxes approved by voters last year.

“We achieved the position we’re in because of tough cuts … and then the people voted for taxes,” he said. “We broke the logjam by going to the people.”

Schools will be the big winner in the governor’s new spending plan, receiving $56.2 billion in state funds, an increase by $2.7 billion over the last year. That funding is set to jump to more than $66 billion by 2016.

The budget also dedicated an additional $350 million to the state’s public insurance program, Medi-Cal, to help implement President Obama’s healthcare law.

Brown’s budget predicts only the second budget surplus in the last decade, with an $851-million surplus projected at the end of the 2013-14 fiscal year — if all his proposals are approved by lawmakers.

Jerry Brown says we will have surpluses. I say we will not.

We’ll see who is right.

The boldfaced parts were by Patterico commenter Taney O’Haley, who said that it sounded like wishful thinking to her.

Donald Douglas referenced an article from Investor’s Business Daily which pointed out that the overwhelming majority the voters gave to the Democrats puts the restrictions under Proposition 13 at risk, and that there are already at least two proposals in the legislature to weaken it:

Already, state Sen. Mark Leno wants to put a measure on the ballot to lower the two-thirds vote threshold for school district parcel taxes to 55%. State Sen. Lois Wolk introduced a bill that would ask voters to drop the vote threshold to 55% for library parcel taxes and bond measures.

In the Assembly, Tom Ammiano plans to reintroduce a bill seeking to revise the definition of an ownership change that triggers a new business property assessment. Voters’ OK isn’t needed. Even if the bill stalls, as it has in the past, business owners fear that its goal — squeezing more tax money from commercial property — will surface in other proposals, some with better odds.

The tax increases approved by the voters in November were temporary increases, adding a 0.25% increase to the state sales tax, and creating three new brackets for the most productive Californians, lasting for seven years. For a single Californian earning $500,000 or more, the new 12.3% marginal rate, combined with the new federal top rate of 39.6%, means that 51.9% of his earnings over the thresholds will be seized just in income taxes alone. If his earning power is portable — and for many of California’s top producers, it won’t be — moving to a state like Texas or Florida, which have no state income taxes, is a completely rational economic decision.

How many will? We can’t know yet, but we’ll see in two more years, when Governor Brown’s projection of a balanced state budget is either realized, or it is not.
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Cross posted on THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL.

Posted in economics, Tax | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off

The Democrats’ economic and taxation policies at work in Illinois

Posted by Dana Pico on 2012/12/24

Remember how our friends on the left were so appalled that the Michigan state legislature passed a right-to-work law? How about in just-across-the-lake Illinois, that liberal bastion and home of President Barack Hussein Obama?

Unions blast state on plans for underfunded pensions

By Rick Pearson, Chicago Tribune | 1:26 p.m. CST, December 19, 2012

A coalition of public employee unions issued a report today blasting state legislation to address their vastly underfunded pension systems and offering instead to make increased worker contributions if lawmakers raised $2 billion by ending tax benefits to corporations and imposing new taxes.

Appearing at the James R. Thompson Center, members of the We Are One coalition said plans backed by Gov. Pat Quinn and another proposal supported by a bipartisan group of lawmakers would violate the state constitution by reducing pension benefits already guaranteed to workers. They predicted such a change would be overturned by the courts.

Moreover, the group said the plan Quinn was advocating would “cause deep harm to working and retired state employees and teachers, negatively impact the Illinois economy and yet still not solve the state’s primary pension problem — the failure to regularly fund its annual required contributions.”

The unions said their offer to require state workers and teachers to pay 2 percent more toward their retirement was conditional upon the state making an “ironclad guarantee” in state law that government fund its pension obligations.

To help fund those obligations, the unions proposed eliminating several corporate tax benefits as well as imposing new taxes on auto trade-ins, satellite TV service and downloaded digital entertainment. The new funds also could be used to help offset cuts in other public social services, the group said.

More at the link.

Illinois is an already-highly-taxed state, with significant companies considering leaving the state due to the already-passed increases in corporate taxes. Here’s another story:

Illinois Among Nation’s Worst State Business Climates, According To CEO Survey

Illinois has been struggling to keep big companies in the state since Illinois Governor Pat Quinn approved an income tax increase in January. Quinn has been widely criticized for the move, and a new survey ranking Illinois among the worst business climates in the U.S. will likely provide fodder to the naysayers.

According to a survey released Monday, California, New York and Illinois have the “least favorable business climates” to corporate executives in the U.S. Nearly 25 percent of the 322 corporate executives surveyed said Illinois was unfavorable due to high taxes and “anti-business climate/regulation.”

“With the battle for business more intense than ever, states and their economic development organizations need to pay close attention to the results of this survey,” Development Counsellors International (DCI) President Andrew T. Levine said in a statement. “Whether accurate or misguided, perceptions about a location’s business climate often play a crucial role in site selection decisions and where companies invest money and create jobs.”

Texas, North Carolina and South Carolina had the most favorable business climates, according to the survey.

More at the link. But Illinois’ business climate is so bad that the family of an Illinois state senator is moving their business out-of-state!

Mike Frerichs is running to keep his seat in the 52nd District Senate seat from Champaign County. He clams he’s all about small businesses in Illinois. Yet, things have gotten so bad during histerm in office that his own family is moving their business out of Illinois and into Indiana.

On the main page of his Senate website, Frerichs is all proud of the “job-creation program” he had a hand in but the best “job-creation program” would be to make Illinois more business friendly and tax-hike-Mike has no desire to do that at all.

The business climate in Illinois under Frerichs and Democrat Governor Pat Quinn is so bad that even Frerichs’ own family is moving its business out of the state.

Recently The Champaign News-Gazette reported that Frerichs cousin moved his trucking business from Illinois over to Covington, Indiana.

Frerichs’ cousin admitted that it is all true and that Illinois’ horrid business climate drove him out of the state.

Readers will not be surprised to learn that Mike Frerichs is a Democrat.

Illinois is doing just what our friends on the left say government should be doing as far as taxes and the economy are concerned, and the result is a loss of businesses, a state government which cannot fund its pension system, and calls for even higher taxes. Simply put, the Democrats’ economic policies are being put into practice, and they are not working!
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The section above the line was published on THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL on December 21st. Today, I found this on Patterico’s Pontifications:

Chevron Moves Hundreds of Employees to Texas from California

Patterico @ 10:32 pm

Interesting:

Chevron Corp. will move as many as 800 jobs to Houston from its California headquarters to support its exploration and production operations, the company told employees Thursday.

The oil giant will maintain its corporate headquarters in San Ramon – just east of San Francisco – where 6,500 employees work.

In an email to its workers, Chevron said jobs moving to Houston include employees in support groups involved with technology, procurement and business development.

“Moves in these groups are expected to take place over the next two years to support our growing upstream business,” the company email said.

I wonder how many businesses are relocating employees from Texas to California. Somehow, I suspect not many.

An interesting move. Chevron is moving support jobs to Houston, which will improve efficiency and (presumably) lower costs. “Moves in these groups are expected to take place over the next two years to support our growing upstream business,” the company e-mail stated, and it makes sense that such jobs would be closer to the physical activity involved. The corporate leadership remains in California, so most of the top executives don’t have to move.

California and Illinois are both following the Democrats’ preferred model for government: unsupportably high government spending, and a high tax regime. Now the Pyrite State is losing another 800 good jobs. Those jobs might or might not have been moved anyway, even if California were governed better, but the anti-business attitude on the Left Coast couldn’t have helped swing the decision toward keeping the jobs in San Ramon.

Posted in economics, Oil | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Flee California Now!

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2012/04/21

I previously wrote about the massive amount of businesses fleeing California. I even noted the mega-billions in tax revenue California lost as people — not businesses — fled the Pyrite State. Well, there’s more news about just who is fleeing California. And it’s those very people who will be necessary to turn California around: the young married couple and their children. From The Wall Street Journal (care of The First Street Journal) comes the corroboration.

Joel Kotkin: The Great California Exodus

A leading U.S. demographer and ‘Truman Democrat’ talks about what is driving the middle class out of the Golden State.
By ALLYSIA FINLEY

“California is God’s best moment,” says Joel Kotkin. “It’s the best place in the world to live.” Or at least it used to be.

Now, however, the Golden State’s fastest-growing entity is government and its biggest product is red tape. The first thing that comes to many American minds when you mention California isn’t Hollywood or tanned girls on a beach, but Greece. Many progressives in California take that as a compliment since Greeks are ostensibly happier. But as Mr. Kotkin notes, Californians are increasingly pursuing happiness elsewhere.

Nearly four million more people have left the Golden State in the last two decades than have come from other states. This is a sharp reversal from the 1980s, when 100,000 more Americans were settling in California each year than were leaving. According to Mr. Kotkin, most of those leaving are between the ages of 5 and 14 or 34 to 45. In other words, young families.

As “they” say, RTWT. But some quick math. 100,000 more Americans moving into California than leaving during the 1980s makes 1,000,000 American “profit”. The “loss” of 4,000,000 since the 1980s leaves the accounting books for the past 30 years at a 3,000,000 American soul “loss”.

California has less than 60 million souls. And far less than that number of actual “legally here” souls. And even fewer American souls. For over 4 million souls to vamoose, it would take 6-2/3 percent reduction in American Citizen population over 20 years. Since California has seen a nominal increase in population since Y2K, that means far more than 6-2/3 percent of the total already living in California was added to California by the foreigner influx. Commenter Hoagie’s wife (God bless her soul) just this week became a US Citizen. And she is arguably more Conservative than I, as she grew up within 60 miles of the DMZ. But she differs from California’s immigrants in that she came here legally and she loves the US, while the lion’s share of California’s immigrants are in the US illegally and have no fealty whatsoever with the US. And, contrary to Hoagie’s wife June, it is illegal for them to vote. But they provide a massive amount of support for allocating California’s 53 Representatives to Congress.

Alright, I went on a tangent there for a moment. I’m back. California is sinking into the abyss. Rapidly. California is shedding employers at an alarming rate. And the people California needs to turn California around? They’re fleeing California, too.

What does all of this mean? It means that, in California’s time of greatest need, those who are most able to rescue California have either already left or are in the process of leaving. There was a very popular game back in the 1980s where you spun a marble in a funnel and tried to time its drop before releasing your own marble. The closer you got to the drop point, the more points you scored. As anyone who ever played that game knows, the closer that marble got to the end-point, the faster it spun. Also, there was no telling when that marble would actually give up the ghost and enter its final fall.

This is California. It will fall. It will collapse. It is only a matter of timing. And the responsibility for its fall rests four-square on the shoulders of the residents who continue to elect radical Socialist Democcrats as the people’s lives become evermore unsustainable.

California is collapsing. Those who could save California are fleeing the collapse. That means California will collapse that much sooner. That means even more people who could possibly save California will flee to other states. That means California will collapse that much sooner. That means even more people who could possibly save California will flee to other states. That means California will collapse that much sooner. That means even more people who could possibly save California will flee to other states. … … … …

Anyone else see a pattern?

UPDATE
The Wall Street Journal article, written by a woman, made its way into Hot Air Headlines and got far more comments than normal.

Posted in economics, Elections, Liberal, Over-regulation, politically correct, politics, society | Tagged: , | 5 Comments »

Moving From California To Texas?

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2012/04/19

You’re not alone. For several years, California businesses have pulled up stakes and moved to Texas. Here are a couple quick videos featuring Andrew Puzder, CEO of CKE restaurants (that’s Carls Jr, and Hardees), a multi-billion-dollar business that moved from California to Texas, very briefly touching on some of the reason why.

As I said, the business exodus from California has been ongoing for several years. Here is a video from mid-October, 2010, noting that over 150 businesses had fled California up to that point in 2010 alone, and that it was a continuing occurrence and not the start of the flight.

A business that spent 42 years in Orange County, California, moved to Corpus Christi, Texas in 2011. The main reason cited? Taxes and fees.

The businessman’s Texas building has double the square footage at a quarter of the cost.
His corporate truck registration fee is 1/7 the cost it was in California.
His electric bill while running the air conditioning for a full month in Texas is less than 1/3 the average bill in California.
California charges sales tax on leased equipment, unlike most states. Every month of the lease, there’s another month of sales tax.
When California residents put a cap on property tax increases, California Government officials just switched to skyrocketing fees, such as Orange County’s sewer connection fee, which went from 50 a year to 800 a year, a 16-fold increase.
In the same time-period, his fee for a business license nearly doubled.

In other words, California made it far too expensive to remain. Do read the above-linked article.

The Orange County Register reported 69 businesses had moved all or part of their businesses out of California between January 1, 2011, and April 15, 2011, a rate exceeding it’s 2010 pace, according to a firm that had been tracking the exodus since 2009. The OC Register cites Joe Vranich, a relocation consultant, who gives a Top Ten list of reasons why businesses are fleeing California:

Why do these and the other companies move out of California? Vranich has updated his top 10 reasons that California companies call the moving van.

No. 10 is new: Energy costs soaring because of new laws and regulations. Commercial electrical rates are already 50% higher than the rest of the country, Vranich says, and Gov. Jerry Brown just signed a new law increasing the amount of power utilities must buy from renewable sources plus regulations for the California Global Warming Solutions Act will start soon.

The other reasons, Vranich says, are:
9. High and unfair tax treatment
8. Regulatory burden
7. Unfriendly legal environment for business
6. Most expensive place to do business
5. Provable savings elsewhere
4. Public policies and taxes create unfriendly business climate
3. Uncontrollable public spending
2. More adversarial toward business than any other state
1. Poor rankings for California on lists ranging from taxes to crime rates to school dropout rates.

“There is little evidence that California’s business environment will improve considering that the legislature in 2011 has voted down litigation reform, tax-increase plans are underway, and a host of new regulations are to be implemented that will increase costs for literally every business,” Vranich says.

California is shedding business because California is making it increasingly cost prohibitive to operate a business within its borders. And that means California, a very high-tax state, is losing massive amounts of tax revenue — and jobs. All while California continues to profligately spend money like there’s no tomorrow. California Legislators and other government officials even came down here to Texas to find out how Texas is luring businesses away from California.

When California politicians want to visit California jobs, they increasingly have to leave California to do so. That’s why Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom traveled with a small entourage of other Golden State politicians to Texas, the biggest beneficiary of California’s economic policies. So many jobs have fled California to Texas, John Fund writes for the Wall Street Journal, that the governing class needed lessons from Texas Governor Rick Perry on how not to repel business:

“We came to learn why they would pick up their roots and move in order to grow their businesses,” says GOP Assemblyman Dan Logue, who organized the trip. “Why does Chief Executive magazine rate California the worst state for job and business growth and Texas the best state?”

The contrast is undeniable. Texas has added 165,000 jobs during the last three years while California has lost 1.2 million. California’s jobless rate is 12% compared to 8% in Texas.

“I don’t see this as a partisan issue,” Mr. Newsom told reporters before the group met with Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry. The former San Francisco mayor has many philosophical disagreements with Mr. Perry, but he admitted he was “sick and tired” of hearing about the governor’s success luring businesses to Texas.

And, of course, businesses aren’t all that’s fleeing the People’s Republik of Kalifornia. People are, too.

The Top Three states in tax revenue lost (1999 – 2009) due to people moving away:
New York
California
Illinois

The Top Three states in tax revenue gained (1999 – 2009) due to people moving in:
Florida
Arizona
Texas

While New York, California, and Illinois all have very high income tax rates, Florida and Texas have no income tax.

For those of you moving from California to Texas (really from any Leftist state to Texas), The Grouch at Right Truth has a little language translation aid for you.

Posted in Conservative, economics, Elections, Law, Liberal, Over-regulation, Philosophy, politics, society, Tax, truth | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Circumcision Bans Outlawed In California

Posted by John Hitchcock on 2011/10/04

HT The Other McCain
The Miami Herald excerpts the Sacramento Bee in reporting that it is now illegal in the State of California for any county or city to ban male circumcision.

Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill prohibiting cities and counties from banning male circumcision, his office announced today.

Assembly Bill 768 by Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles, was inspired by a San Francisco ballot measure designed to prohibit child circumcision there. A judge in July ordered the circumcision ban off the November ballot, but Gatto’s bill proceeded through the Legislature, where it passed with unanimous votes.

Gatto argued that such bans were an affront to the exercise of “personal, medical and religious freedom.”

The San Diego-based anti-Semitic group that was leading the charge to outlaw male circumcision in San Fransisco — and produced multiple evil anti-Semitic comics in that endeavor — hardest hit.

Anti-Semites, do you like apples? Well, California got your number. How do you like them apples?

Posted in Christianity, Conservative, Health Care, Judaism, Law, Liberal, Personal Responsibility, Philosophy, politics, race, Religion, society | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »

 
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