Articles for category Politics
Republican lawmakers are prepared to let voters decide whether to close California's stubborn budget deficit with higher taxes in exchange for major changes in state spending, public pensions and regulatory policies.
State revenue has rocketed to a projected $6.6 billion beyond expectations, a windfall that Gov. Jerry Brown wants to use to stabilize education spending and help repair California's battered finances.
In the revised budget plan that Brown released Monday, schools would receive about $3 billion that would otherwise have been deferred, aiding districts' ability to plan the academic year. The proposal also devotes some of the unanticipated money to business tax credits and to delaying a portion of the tax increases the governor had sought earlier this year. [Read More...]
More than a thousand teachers, state workers and others fanned out across the south lawn of the Capitol on Friday to pressure Republican lawmakers to extend expiring taxes to avoid further budget cuts.
The event capped a week of demonstrations by the California Teachers Assn., whose members lobbied lawmakers, staged rallies and, on two occasions, got arrested for refusing to leave the Capitol after the building closed. On Friday, David Sanchez, the union’s president, said that his arrest -– and those of 25 others –- brought attention to the cause of public education. [Read More...]
Battle lines sharpened Thursday over California's public pensions with the release of a new report that concludes pay and benefit packages for public workers are better than those for their counterparts in the private sector.
Commissioned by pension overhaul advocates poised to seek changes, the report drew immediate fire from public employee unions, which have muscled up to fight the emerging pension wars. [Read More...]
In a victory for all public retirees, the California Supreme Court on April 13 refused to hear the County of Orange’s appeal seeking to reverse retroactive pension increases given to retired Orange County sheriffs’ deputies.
The refusal to hear the case means the decision made earlier this year by the 2nd District Court of Appeal in Los Angeles stands. That court ruled the 2001 labor agreement retroactively giving Orange County deputies a 3 percent at age 50 formula for retirement is valid and does not violate the provisions of the California Constitution. [Read More...]
Published Friday, Apr. 08, 2011
With the budget stuck in neutral, Gov. Jerry Brown and lawmakers are leaving Sacramento to bolster their case for and against taxes.
The dueling roadshows reflect the fact that the parties remain at loggerheads after talks broke down last week. Facing a remaining $15.4 billion deficit, Brown is still seeking an election on taxes.
As Brown launches a road trip in a quest for public support, some of his most ardent supporters are wondering if he’ll sell his budget plans by moving to the right – too far to the right.
The issue arises after the Democratic governor proposed changes in the public pension system, including many that have been demanded by Republicans or already contained in GOP-authored legislation. Some were presented as ideas, worded vaguely and signaling a starting point for negotiations.
Shaken by a report alleging wrongdoing by former top officials, directors of the California Public Employees' Retirement System voted to push for legislation curtailing gift-giving to public employees and limiting board members and executives from going to work for companies doing business with the pension fund. [Read More...]
Lawmakers on Wednesday reacted skeptically to a controversial new proposal to lower public employee pensions throughout state and local government.
"Frankly, I just don't see this happening," said Sen. Alex Padilla during a joint meeting of Assembly and Senate committees that oversee public employee compensation.
A Santa Barbara-based organization that wants to end union representation of California government employees has revved up its campaign contribution collection machinery for a run at putting the idea to a statewide vote.
Although Secretary of State records indicate that Californians for Public Union Reform hasn't reported that it has taken in any money yet -- it just filed with the state last week -- it is positioning itself to accept contributions with an aim toward putting an initiative on the ballot next year.