Our state is big.
Our state is full of people, many of whom are great, some of whom are not so great.
Our state is governed by The Terminator who actually hasn't done that horrible of a job.
Our state is in debt.
Our state is almost out of money.
In fact, come February, the state will be totally out of money... and public works projects like road work, building construction, and many other social services will cease. Also, the state workers (people like the worker bees over at the Department of Nursing, Department of Justice, etc) might not get paid.
Something has to be done... and they appear to have been trying for a long long long time. However even though this state considers itself progressive in a few ways, the bickering and tantrum throwing antics of the state legislator have been nauseating.
The Republican and the Democrat legislators can't seem to reach an agreement, and the tax payers don't want to pay more in taxes.
Something has to give.
Enter the "out of the box" or "tricky" thinking Democrats. (Depends on who you ask.)
They want to raise 9.3 billion bucks via new taxes and fees.
Wait, you might be saying... didn't Californians vote back in 1978 via Prop 13 to ensure that state taxes couldn't be raised without a 2/3rds majority vote? You would be right.
Wait, you might be saying... isn't the validity of a 2/3rd versus a simple majority in order to change the state's constitution being very closely examined as we speak? (Well, no... not until January, but still.)
Wait, you might be saying... what sorts of taxes and fees?
Gas Tax of 13 to 35 cents a gallon (depending on the news source)
State Sales tax increase by 3/4 of a cent
2.5 surcharge on state income taxes
That sounds bad. And it sounds illegal because of the aforementioned Prop 13.
But wait! The Democrats will cut spending (7 billion) in other areas -no news source had a verified list- and thus they say they wouldn’t be raising taxes and fees as much as shifting them around somewhat.
So, a few things spring to mind.
Raising taxes is never fun. however, the taxes that we pay go toward services that we need and use. Therefore, even though it isn't ideal, wouldn't you rather everyone pay more in taxes and have a working infrastructure? I would.
Also, if you are wigged out by the thought of paying more for gas when the price has finally dropped back to the cheap side of affordable... take heart: The proposal would eliminate an 18-cent-a-gallon excise tax on gas and a fluctuating sales tax on gas, replacing them with the proposed per-gallon fee.
I don't actually have a problem with the plan... but I know that if it were put to the vote, it would fail. And the democrats know that as well... which is why they are trying this back door approach. Which would seem sneaky if it weren't being talked about out in the public eye.
Still, a bit loop-hole-ish. I wonder what the long term effect of allowing this to happen would be. Some people are saying that should the vote pass, it would immediately be taken to the courts. Because delay is just what we all need right now.
Oh, one more thing.. even if it passes the State House, the Terminator would still have to sign it into effect...
What do you think? Do desperate times call for desperate measures? Or s this a group sleigh ride down a slippery slope and a dangerous solution?