The game of high stakes poker in California might get a lot more interesting. Governor Jerry Brown demanded Republican put his tax hike proposals to a vote. Brown said “let the voter decide”. Now some Republicans are considering doing just that, provided the ballot also contains a provision to cut taxes.

Please consider Republicans preparing to support Jerry Brown’s special election — on their own terms.

California Republicans — who initially balked at Gov. Jerry Brown’s Monday call for a special election to “let voters decide” solutions to the state budget — may be crafting their own ballot plan, complete with a new twist.

Some leading Republicans and anti-tax figures are now mulling the idea of calling Brown’s “bluff” and supporting the special election –if tax cuts, as well as tax extensions, are offered to voters on the ballot, we hear.

Jon Coupal, who heads the influential Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, told the Chronicle/ today that some Republican lawmakers in Sacramento came up with the idea after Brown argued at Monday’s State of the State address that GOP lawmakers may be seen as “thumbing their nose” at voters by blocking a special election to allow them to weigh in on tax extensions and billions in budget cuts.

Asked how Republicans could meet or even counter Brown’s challenge, Coupal said: “I think it’s quite easy.”

“I think the Republicans should agree to put those tax increases on the ballot on one condition: parallel tax reductions.”

Said Coupal: “Our response is — “You want to give the voters a choice? We agree.”

Republicans, he said, “know what the answer would be, because Californians already expressed their desire to hold the line on taxes.”

Coupal told us it would work like this: Brown has proposed a five year tax extension that includes a .25 percent surtax on personal income tax. That would go on the ballot — as would a corresponding .25 decrease, he said.

The same would hold true for the vehicle license fee, and the sales tax, he said. That gives voters a chance, on each of the proposed taxes, the option “to increase it by whatever amount, to decrease it or reject both,”Coupal said.

“If the Democrats really want to give Californians a chance to engage in the process, let’s do it,” he said.

Why Stop With Taxes?

I strongly endorse this idea. But why stop with taxes?

Mish Ballot Proposals

  1. Ending defined benefit plans for state employees
  2. Scrap prevailing wage laws
  3. Ending teacher tenure
  4. Making California a Right to Work State
  5. Scrapping totally useless departments such as but not limited to: Acupuncture Department, Art Council, Bureau of Automotive repair, Barbering board, Film Commission, Hearing Aid Dispensers Bureau, Home Furnishings Bureau, Independent Living Council, Indoor Air Quality Program, MyCali Youth Portal, Natural Community Planning Program, Railroad Museum, Wetlands Information System

California Agencies

Look at this disgusting list of California Agencies.

I sorted out some but not all of the more ridiculous ones.

Does the state need a ….

  • Acupuncture Department
  • Office of AIDs
  • Air Research Board
  • 3 different agencies for alcohol and beverages
  • 2 Apprenticeship Councils
  • Art Council
  • Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus
  • Bureau of Automotive repair
  • Barbering board
  • Biodiversity council
  • Calvet Loan program
  • Climate Change Portal
  • Coastal Commission
  • Cool California
  • 4 Delta agencies
  • Digital Library
  • Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair
  • Employment Training Panel
  • Energy Commission
  • Equalization Board
  • 2 Fair Employment agencies
  • Film Commission
  • Flex Your Power
  • Healthy Family Program
  • Hearing Aid Dispensers Bureau
  • Home Furnishings Bureau
  • Humanities Council
  • Independent Living Council
  • Indoor Air Quality Program
  • Economic Development Bank
  • Interagency Ecological Program
  • Labor and Workforce Development
  • Latino Legislative Caucus
  • Learn California
  • Little Hoover Commission
  • Maritime Academy
  • Managed Risk Board
  • Museum for History
  • MyCali Youth Portal
  • Native Heritage Association
  • Natural Community Planning Program
  • Naturopathic Medicine Community
  • Outreach
  • Peace Officer Standards Board
  • Postsecondary Education Commission
  • Prison Industry Authority
  • Privacy Protection Office
  • Psychology Board
  • Railroad Museum
  • Recovery Task Force
  • Refugee Branch
  • Regents of the U of C
  • Save Our Water commission
  • Smart Growth Caucus
  • Status of Women Commission
  • Take Charge California
  • We Connect
  • Wetlands Information System
  • Workforce Investment Board

I support a yes-no vote on cutting off funding for every one of those agencies, individually, not in a group, preferably with a provision that “no vote” (nothing checked) counts as “a no vote”.

I say stick it to Brown big time. He wants a vote, well so do I. Let’s have one, and not just on taxes but rather about all issues that affect taxpayers.

Mike “Mish” Shedlock
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