In the Press-Telegram (I would link the article but trying to find articles on the P-T website is too frustrating this early in the morning) an AP article touted a bill that is part of "Agenda 2010" that would end furloughs for 80,000 state workers. As a reminder Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger mandated furloughs three days a month for 200,000 state employees. Calculating a four week month that amounts to a 15% cut in expenses, and salaries for those furloughed.
Since the furloughs have taken effect I have been asking if anyone has noticed any change or been inconvenienced because of the lay-offs. With the exception of those furloughed I am yet to have someone say, "yes I have been affected..." So overall the citizens of California are seeing a 15% savings with virtually no impact to services. Not good enough for Senate Pro-Tem Darrell Steinberg D (naturally) from Sacramento. Since Steinberg's district is chock full of government workers, and since Steinberg and his statewide party receive much largess from state employees for their campaigns, Steinberg is obligated to ignore the savings the rest of us are seeing and get some payback for his allies.
Steinberg's office has said the employees his bill would un-furlough are from departments not dependent on the general funds, departments where 95% of the funding comes from the feds (which is our tax dollars) and are self-funded through fees and collections, which become our funds. To wit Steinberg wishes to un-furlough employees at the State Franchise Tax Board and the Department of Motor Vehicles.
Steinberg said that the state is losing $300 million a year in uncollected taxes because of the furloughed workers. What? We are losing $25 million a month because employees are missing three days a month? Sounds to me that instead of furloughing people at the Franchise Tax Board we should be firing them. And does anyone really believe these numbers? Where they worked up by the same mathematicians who brought us the false global warming temperatures? An official sounding Senate Office (of Oversight and Outcomes) calculates that for every $1 in savings at the tax board the state loses $7 in collections. This would be the same office that does budget projections with assumed revenue and fudges when spending actually starts so the budget appears balanced, but then the state runs out of cash after five or six months.
Regarding the DMV, Steinberg says the furloughs "inconveniences" motorists. Those dumbe enough not to make and appointment have to wait an average of 45 minutes instead of 27. So we are going to un-furlough thousands of workers to save people who are incapable of planning ahead for something with a known date, like a license or registration expiration, 18 minutes? We are going to add 24 hours per worker per month of salary and benefits to trade off 18 minutes per unscheduled visitor?
This is what the Democrats call saving jobs. Re-employing government workers to full time, which increase not just costs today but also long terms as it adds 15% to their long term benefit and retirement plans as well. Reading through the "Agenda 2010" website one is overwhelmed with the buzz words used that pander to the political correctness and progressive terminology that really means nothing. "Green jobs," "brown fields," "low and very low income housing," "value working families."
Green jobs? How about a tortoise preventing solar and wind farms? What about nuclear power? What about off shore drilling that would reduce millions of miles of ship, train and truck transportation of foreign oil?
Brown fields? Those areas where factories could be built? Where new companies could start up and employ Californians? Those areas that are laying fallow except for a butterfly that could support an energy plant more efficient than the one it would replace?
Low and very low income housing? More tax breaks for low income home ownership? Isn't our housing crisis because people with too little income bought homes? Does every housing bill have to only be for low and very low income families, thus attracting more low and very low income families into a community? And the subsequent impacts on schools, hospitals, emergency services?
"Value Working Families." From the same people that raised income tax rates? Raised sales tax rates? Raised state DMV fees? Cut child tax credits? Imposed ridiculous diesel particulates regulations that will cost one million jobs in the state? Value those families?
Agenda 2010 is ripe with using Federal funds and money from past propositions to pump money into other state and local bureaucracies that essentially moves funds from one government pot to another and another with skimming along the way. Government money does not create jobs in the private sector, government money takes jobs away from the private sector.
Here is my Agenda for 2010 jobs a day in California, it is pretty simple:
- Cut the corporate tax rate from 8.84% in half. It is currently the 4th highest in the nation, cutting it in half will retain existing companies and attract other companies to move from Oregon (who just raised corporate rates), Nevada, Arizona and other states where jobs have been lost.
- Cut the unemployment insurance costs. Again attract businesses and major corporations.
- Cut the sales tax by a third. Free up funds for citizens to spend and lower costs for businesses for their materials and equipment.
- Suspend the California Air Resources Board and all their draconian edicts based on false reports and science.
- Cut personal tax rates by a third. Again free up personal income for spending an investment.
- Provide five year tax breaks for companies that start up new manufacturing facilities.
- Kick back more tax revenue for five years to cities and counties that approve permits and land use for manufacturing facilities once those plants begin operating.
There are two groups that Sacramento Democrats see as their constituents, and neither of them provide jobs or have a net positive impact on the bottom line: government employees and the low and very low income earners. Our budget is incredibly skewed to these two groups and is paid for by moderate income earners, average income earners (which by math makes up about hald the work force) and high income earners. It is the last two groups who create jobs. Our state is on the verge of bankruptcy because the Legislature has sucked more and more money out of those who work at decent jobs to pay for those who work for the state or are uneducated, unemployed--generationally, and living off the free education, health care and emergency services others provide.
That pig the Democrats are trying to ride to market isn't going to make it. In the meantime the farmer has taken his horse and moved to Texas.
Google has changed their posting format and has removed the spellcheck button, having always been a poor speller this is a much needed tool for me. My apologies to those who stumble over and get frustrated with the mistakes! I, and many other bloggers, hope they correct this soon!