February, 2011

Students Protest For Entitlements

Monday, February 28th, 2011

Katy Grimes: On the west steps of the Capitol today a small group of college students protested the proposed cuts to public university and community college budgets -- schools which the California taxpayers already subsidize. And right along with the students were several legislators encouraging th...

Poisonous Budget Spider Uncovered

Monday, February 28th, 2011

FEB. 28, 2011 BY WAYNE LUSVARDI There is a line in Sir Walter Scott’s novel Ivanhoe where a gentleman is... advised to remember that all the wealth he had acquired by sucking the blood of miserable victims had but swelled him like a bloated spider, which may be overlooked while he kept in a corn...

Pensions Before The Poor!

Monday, February 28th, 2011

FEB. 28, 2011 By TROY ANDERSON For years, officials in California have used accounting gimmicks, stimulus funds and the state credit card to keep the safety net intact. But experts say the state may have run out of tricks. Facing a $25 billion state budget shortfall, Gov. Jerry Brown has propose...

Can California Mimic Wisconsin?

Monday, February 28th, 2011

FEB. 28, 2011 If a real union reform battle can take place in Wisconsin and spread to other liberal rust-belt, union-dominated states, then it could perhaps happen in California ---- although it might take some time, given the political dynamic here and the Golden State's "follows its own drummer" ...

Is An All-Cuts Budget Ahead?

Friday, February 25th, 2011

FEB. 25, 2011 By KATY GRIMES SACRAMENTO -- There is never a dull moment with California Gov. Jerry Brown. In a surprise visit to a budget committee meeting yesterday, Brown threatened to produce a budget that cuts $26.6 billion from state services if legislators do not vote to put his tax extensio...

“Balance” Is Missing From Budget

Thursday, February 24th, 2011

FEB. 25, 2011 By KATY GRIMES SACRAMENTO -- As the Budget Conference Committee hearings began on Wednesday, Republicans challenged the frequent use of the word “balanced” for describing the tax increases and budget cuts within the governor’s budget proposal. With Republicans and Democrats com...

Bulldoze Williamson Act Subsidies?

Thursday, February 24th, 2011
Bulldoze Williamson Act Subsidies?

Feb. 24, 2011 By DAVE ROBERTS There is much wailing and gnashing of teeth over Gov. Jerry Brown's proposed budget cuts, but the outcry over elimination of state subsidies for millionaire landowners may be overkill. Brown has zeroed out funding for the Williamson Act, which this year is providing $...

2/3 Wis. 8th Graders Not Proficient

Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011

John Seiler: Wisconsin teachers have been on strike. And they object to Gov. Scott Walker's move to end or limit collective bargaining. They're also the highest-paid teachers in the Midwest. So, how well are they teaching? This is from CNS News: Two-thirds of the eighth graders in Wisconsin public...

CA Budget Still Needs Fumigation

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Feb. 22, 2011 By JOHN SEILER As Gov. Jerry Brown and the state Legislature continue crafting a budget, skunks keep being thrown into the room. The biggest skunk is that the $146 billion California State Teachers' Retirement System, CalSTRS, is effectively insolvent. Funded at 80 percent of liabi...

Courts' 2-Billion-Buck IT Bust

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

FEB. 22, 2011 By KATY GRIMES While courtrooms across the state are being closed, courthouse employees furloughed and criminal and civil cases taking record time to come to trial, the Administrative Office of the Courts refuses to halt the implementation of a $1.9 billion computer system. After spe...