How CA GOP can have fun with the budget, Democrats

Reagan LaughingJan. 31, 2013

By John Seiler

I keep giving Republicans ideas so they can have some fun with Democrats. So far, the GOP remains about as fun-loving as teetotaler at a Sonora wine-tasting party.

But here’s an idea. Proposition 30 just passed and is raising $6 billion in new taxes. As you’ll recall, in the ads last fall the money was advertised as going entirely to education. And Gov. Jerry Brown’s  new budget proposal even says, “Proposition 30, the Governor’s Initiative, was premised on the need to reinvest in education.” (For Democrats, tax increases always are “investment.”)

But in that budget proposal, Brown gives just $2.7 billion to K-14 education, just $150 million to Cal State and $250 million to the University of California. Total: $3.1 billion to education.

That leaves $2.9 billion for the general fund, meaning pensions.

Now here’s where Republicans can have some fun. Put an initiative on the November 2014 ballot that allocates all the Prop. 30 funds to education! Make it $5 billion to K-14 and $1 billion to Cal State and UC.

Is that “ballot-box budgeting,” which I always have attacked because it distorts the budget? Yes, but so is Prop. 30. So, it’s just reallocating what’s already been budgeted at the ballot box.

And here’s the best part: The Democrat’s main interest groups, the teachers’ unions, will have to support it “for the children.” Yet the initiative also would deny money to the government-workers’ pensions, forcing an earlier date that reforms must be made.

Republicans: If you can’t beat Democrats, at least have fun causing division and chaos in their ranks.


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  1. RightCowLeftCoast
    RightCowLeftCoast 31 January, 2013, 09:06

    For all the increases in labor costs within our multiple state and local level education systems, our students are not graduating at a significntly higher rate, with significantly great academic or technical skills, and our education system graduated thousands of people who are barely employable or who have undergrad degrees in fields that are not hiring. We to have millions of illegals working in fields that use to be seen as honest work and we have to grant visas to highly educated immigrants to meet the demands of our most high tech companies who haven’t yet been run out of the state due to our higher operating costs.
    It’s not that we don’t believe in properly funding the education of the future members of the society, it’s just that the track record so far has been atrocious.

    Reply this comment
  2. TomK
    TomK 31 January, 2013, 09:17

    My Wife who is a teacher in the Simi Valley School district just had an emergency meeting. They are 13 million short on their budget and need to make cuts problem is the budget is 96% personnel. They are saying the are trying to avoid having to go to the state for a loan because the state would then control the district until the loan is paid back. All this even after prop 30 passed.

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  3. SkippingDog
    SkippingDog 31 January, 2013, 12:15

    Money is fungible, John. Even you Von Mises nuts know that much. If you move all of the Prop 30 money to education, the funding for CalSTRS will be readily availble becuase that’s education as well. The money for existing pension obligations to CalPERS will continue to come from the general budget, and the funding that would otherwise be directed toward education would be diverted in response to the changes in Prop 30 allocations.

    I guess your opposition to ballot box budgeting isn’t based on any principles you claim to have.

    Reply this comment
  4. SeeSaw
    SeeSaw 2 February, 2013, 10:36

    Isn’t is interesting, how people like you, Mr. Seiler, rail on and on about the “evil” public sector unions, when your darling Republican Governor, Ronald Reagan, was the first politician in CA to sign the Bill allowing local public sector workers to organize. Why don’t you write an article about that, and give the Republicans a little education about that pesky little truth.

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