By Doug Porter
Back in 2012 voters approved Proposition 30, which combined a one-fourth cent sales tax increase and a surcharge on incomes taxes for individuals earning more than $250,000 annually. The money raised went to fund education and healthcare agencies, both of which were severely impacted by budget cuts during the great recession.
The provisions of this measure expire at the end of 2018. Proposition 55 asks voters to extend the 1-3% increase on high-income earners through 2030. The sales tax increase would be allowed to sunset at the end of 2016.
The measure will keep money flowing to K-12 schools, community colleges, and (if the Gov. says ok) healthcare for low-income Californians, along with adding to the state’s rainy day fund. Even with the current level of funding, California still ranks near the bottom of the nation in per-pupil spending, class-size average and per-student ratio in nurses, librarians, and counselors.
Not passing Prop 55 will result in going back to the days of budget cut roulette every year at the State legislature. The additional teachers, books and supplies, expanded libraries, and improvements in community colleges of the last few years will once again be on the chopping block
Needless to say, the entire educational establishment, along with all of organized labor, the healthcare industry, and the Democratic Party support Prop 55. In opposition are the Republican/Libertarian Party, the California Chamber of Commerce and the usual anti-tax groups.
The arguments against Prop 55 fall into three categories.
- Gov. Brown promised the taxes would be temporary. And that’s true. It’s also true that Gov. Brown isn’t the one bringing this measure to the voters.
- Rich people will leave California and take their weathcreator jobs with them if the increased income taxes continue. Cough. Riiight. Don’t let the door hit you on the ass on your way out.
- The teachers union supports this, and ‘everybody knows’ they hate poor children so they can get big salaries.
It’s a sign of the times, I suppose, that the Union-Tribune ran an op-ed by City College Professor (and friend of the SDFP) Kelly Mayhew in support of Prop 55. (The paper’s editorial board opposed it.)
Here’s her closing argument:
Proposition 55 is not a new tax or an increase; it simply maintains the current income tax rates on the wealthiest Californians for 12 more years: individuals earning more than $250,000 and couples earning more than $500,000 a year. Proposition 55 directs funds specifically to K-12 public education and community colleges, while also allocating funds to health care for low-income children and their families. You should note, too, that the money will be spent in our classrooms and on our students, not administration, because there are strict accountability requirements built into the proposition.
Budget forecasts show that unless we extend the taxes on the wealthy, which would continue to bring in an average of $8 billion in annual revenues, our public schools and colleges will lose nearly $4 billion and our state budget will face a deficit of more than $4 billion in the first full year alone.
Clearly, now is not the time to turn back. This is the time to move California forward. We have a proven pathway with Proposition 55, the Children’s Education and Health Care Protection Act of 2016. California’s future depends on an investment in our students to enable them to achieve 21st-century technical expertise, citizenship skills and academic success.
To date, no money has been raised to oppose the measure.
For More Information
Ballot Language – TAX EXTENSION TO FUND EDUCATION AND HEALTHCARE. INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT. Extends by twelve years the temporary personal income tax increases enacted in 2012 on earnings over $250,000, with revenues allocated to K–12 schools, California Community Colleges, and, in certain years, healthcare. Fiscal Impact: Increased state revenues—$4 billion to $9 billion annually from 2019–2030—depending on economy and stock market. Increased funding for schools, community colleges, health care for low–income people, budget reserves, and debt payments.
A YES vote would: Extend income tax increases on high–income taxpayers, scheduled to end after 2018, through 2030.
A NO vote would: End income tax increases on high–income taxpayers as scheduled at the end of 2018.
Polling: A Field Poll released on September 27 puts support for Proposition 55 at 60%, with 30% opposed and 10% undecided.
For information on the November 2016 General Election, see our San Diego 2016 Progressive Voter Guide
Other San Diego Free Press coverage of the 2016 general election.
Tomorrow: Prop 56. A proposed tax on tobacco and another campaign of corporate deception. (Yes, a rare Saturday column! I’m running out of time.) We’ll be writing about various state and local contests Monday-Friday for the next few weeks.
Weekly Progressive Calendar: Upcoming in San Diego
Get your event listed: I try to list the next 10 days or so of mostly non-commercial events I think our readers might find of interest. I source my material from social media listings and press releases. In cases where there are competing but similar events or campaigns of the progressive persuasion, I do my best to list everything.
Protests Involving Support for Alfred Olango
National Action Network Prayer Meeting
Friday, Sept 30, 10am
100 Civic Center Way, El Cajon
No Further Info Available
(It Was Announced Yesterday at Olango Family Press Conference)
From the Union-Tribune:
As many as 40 pastors from a variety of East County churches are expected at 10 a.m., according to a spokesman for the group.
The group emphasized that the gathering is for prayers for peace and unity, not political or protest speeches.
“We’re praying for peace in the city,” said Rolland Slade, senior pastor at Meridian Baptist Church in El Cajon. “As the protests begin to escalate, it’s time for us to come out of our meetings to physically show that we are together.”
March for Alfred Olango (Unofficial)
Saturday, October 1, 3pm
San Diego Central Police Station
2501 Imperial Ave
Info & Updates
CAUTION: Something about this just doesn’t feel right, IMO. I’m listing because it is all over social media. I hope I’m wrong.
This event is being sponsored by a newly formed group calling itself Black and Blue United. Outside of a Facebook page, which contains a statement about their intentions, they have no internet history. They say they are neutral, as in CNN is “liberal.”
I reached out to the via FB Messenger this morning to try and learn more about the group. They responded by saying I should do an interview with them. (Not possible when you’re writing on deadline)
I was told they wished not to identify anybody from the group (I explained that I wasn’t looking to publish any names, just verify that they were for real) due to “the Founder is receiving threats and harassment…”
At the Olango family press conference yesterday, they made reference to this event saying it was something they knew nothing about and that “anybody can post anything to Facebook.”
When I mentioned this to BBU via Facebook, they asked ME to connect them with a representative of the family.
“If you can connect us to a representative of the family, we would love to explain our intentions. Other than that we’re not we don’t want to make it about us, just trying to make a difference.”
Political Animals – A film featuring Chris Kehoe
Political Animals tells the story of the civil rights struggle of this century – the gay rights movement – through the eyes of four elected women – including our own trailblazer CHRIS KEHOE! Emotionally charged like its subjects, the film follows four ground- breaking lesbians who took the fight for the causes most personal to them and their communities off the streets and into the halls of government.
New Black Voices: A Community Dialogue
New Black Voices is holding a FREE inclusive health conference on the 1st of October. Supported by the California Endowment and California Wellness Foundation, New Black Voices is an education initiative designed to promote awareness and shared social action addressing the Black communities.
Please join us for presentations from our guest speakers, workshops as well as a healthy catered lunch. Parking is also complimentary. Any inquiries, please call 619-316-9322
Talk Against State Violence
Sunday, October 2, 11am
Bread and Salt
1955 Julian Ave (Barrio Logan)
Info & Updates
Mexico is experiencing one of its worst crises in its history; politically, economically, socially, and culturally.
We invite you to attend and discuss the consequences of U.S. military aide to Mexico on the 48th Anniversary of the Tlatelolco massacre (October 2, 1968). Hear first hand accounts of the impact of US military aide (Merida Initiavite) has had on the people of Mexico. Join us in welcoming the Regional Center for Human Rights Morelos y Pavón (Guerrero), Center Frey Matías (Chiapas), and a student from the Normal Rural School Isidro Burgos, Ayotzinapa Guerrero who survived the september 26th 2014 dissapearance of 43 classmates.
Justice for Robert Branch Rally
Monday, October 3, 4:30pm
County DA’s Office
330 West Broadway (Downtown)
Info & Updates
Come and support Robert Branch who was racially profiled last year. Robert Branch was approached by a non-identified Sheriff in plain clothes and a non-identified car and choked Robert Branch unconcious before Robert Branch could even confirm he was a cop. Robert and Civil Rights Attorney’s filed a lawsuit against the Sheriff’s department and 7 months after the incident the District Attorney’s office came back and brought criminal chargers on Robert for resisting arrest. Now many will gather outside of the DA’ s office the day before his trial begins to call for her to drop the charges on Robert Branch.
Protest Against America’s Largest
Private Prison Corporation (CCA) & Prop. 57 Rally
Thursday, October 6, 6pm
2181 Logan Ave San Diego
Info & Updates
The time is NOW and we must act NOW! This is a call for ACTION that will take place on October 6th in Barrio Logan as we stand in solidarity to protest against the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA). Our revolution to the end the privatization of Correctional Facilities has only begun and we will continue to fight for social justice.
CCA is the largest for-profit prison industry in America and they currently operate three Correctional Facilities across San Diego County. Two out of the three facilities are located in the heart of Southeast San Diego and Barrio Logan. Both centers are located in residential neighborhoods within close proximity of homes, churches, schools, and businesses. CCA is looking to capitalize through alternative services in order to boost their revenue by purchasing re-entry/detention centers across the country. Our brothers and sisters deserve an authentic righteous RE-ENTRY/Pre-Release center that is not ran by for-profit corporate pimps. CCA’s primary objective is to to make profit off incarcerating human beings rather than providing quality rehabilitative services that help individuals transition back into their communities after incarceration.
Our communities deserve better and we must start investing in infrastructures that will promote positive social change for our people. Join our movement and let’s rise up in solidiarity as we take a stand against these corporate pimps!
No Way to Treat a Child:
Youth Imprisonment in Palestine and US
Sunday, October 9, 1:30pm
Malcom X Library
5148 Market Street
Info & Updates
The San Diego chapter of Jewish Voice for Peace is excited to announce our upcoming event titled “No Way to Treat a Child: Occupation, Youth Imprisonment and Mass Incarceration in Palestine and the US”.
The event is being held in conjunction with the No Way to Treat a Child campaign, which is headed by Defense for Children International Palestine and the American Friends Service Committee. The campaign seeks to challenge Israel’s prolonged military occupation of Palestinians by exposing widespread and systematic ill-treatment of Palestinian children in the Israeli military detention system.
Event co-sponsors are San Diego Public Library, American Friends Service Committee, Amnesty International, All of Us or None – San Diego, Council on American-Islamic Relations – San Diego, and Students Against Mass Incarceration-UCSD.
On This Day: 1899 – Seventy-year-old Mother Jones organized the wives of striking miners in Arnot, Pa., to descend on the mine with brooms, mops and clanging pots and pans. They frightened away the mules and their scab drivers. The miners eventually won their strike. 1962 – James Meredith succeeded in registering at the University of Mississippi. It was his fourth attempt to register. 1989 – Neil Young appeared on “Saturday Night Live” and performed “Rockin’ In The Free World.”
Did you enjoy this article? Subscribe to “The Starting Line” and get an email every time a new article in this series is posted!
I read the Daily Fishwrap(s) so you don’t have to… Catch “the Starting Line” Monday thru Friday right here at San Diego Free Press (dot) org. Send your hate mail and ideas to DougPorter@SanDiegoFreePress.Org Check us out on Facebook and Twitter.