Friday :: Oct 10, 2003

What do we do about arnold? And what’s arnold going to do about California?

by Duckman GR

Greetings from the Duckman. First time poster here, and glad to be! Thanks to Steve and Mary and Al Gore and everybody else who makes this internet thingy the happening it is. I’ll be posting from sunny San Diego, that sleepy little navy town south of Los Angeles, all 3 million or so of us just sleepin away. Sure, we gave you pete wilson and duncan hunter, but hey, how about Tony Gwynn and Tony Hawk and the World Famous San Diego Zoo and the Over-the-Line Tournament and Tailgating (you don’t think the Dodger fans came up with that do ya?). So let’s talk about that governor we’ve been foisted with.

arnold faces some tough decisions if he truly means to fix the state’s economy and budget deficit. He says he won’t raise taxes, so how’s he going to do this? By bringing in auditors and opening up the books? I think he’s confused us with dick cheney’s energy planning group, because CA’s budget is an open book, not a matter of executive privilege. By bringing in jeb’s finance director, ? No, karl bush had nothing to do with the recall, never mind how he’s talking up arnold, visiting arnold, planning on sending cash to arnold. But I digress.

If arnold wants to slash and burn, I think we need to help him. He’s asked for us to work together to solve the problems, so I think we should. Looking at some potential target areas, we know the right wants to get rid of those pesky environmental expenditures from the CA budget, things like the CAL EPA and the Coastal Commission, but really, can they? And how much money are they going to save if they do?

There’s a reason why CA’s air is cleaner than Texas’ and it isn’t the sea breezes. The CAL/EPA is tougher than the federal standards, and apparently that hasn’t really held us back, economically, since we are the worlds 6th largest economy.

The California Coastal Commission’s budget is around $15,000,000 million. That’s about .19% of that darned persistent $8,000,000,000 deficit. Out of every dollar for that deficit, almost a fifth of a whole penny would be saved getting rid of the Coastal Commission. Forget that the CCC is mandated by the CA constitution, just start counting the savings! We could get rid of the whole Jobs-Housing Balance Improvement Program, at about $100-200 million. This one provides grants to those localities that increase their housing permits. A program for workers and developers, i.e. social and corporate welfare, and it would knock off a whopping 1.25% of that deficit or about a penny and a quarter per dollar. But the right wing wants to go after the environmental stuff, the migrant workers, but to paraphrase State Senate President Pro Tem John Burton (D) on MSGOP last night, I’m not doing it the backs of blind people and little old ladies and the poor and their dogs.

But there are more things in the budget. Things that benefit wealthy developers, those that give money to big corporations that don’t need the cash. In the 2001-02 budget we spent $19.6 million on the agriculture industry to help bail them out of their Glassey-winged Sharpshooter and Pierce’s Disease problems. You want to grow stuff Mr. and Mrs. Farmer, deal with the pests. That’s your job! Right arnold?

There’s just got be zillions we can find for the [gag] governor that he might miss, spending for business infrastructure that they could and should do themselves, credits, state spending as incentives, long before they start gutting programs that actually help people, and mitigate the harm from the activities of our human experience. Or it might just amount to chump change. But der Gropenfuehrer needs our help. Let’s make him pay for asking.

Update 10/10 2:05 p

Here's a link to the State of CA budget here (pdf). It's only a summary, 673 pages.

Duckman GR :: 8:40 AM :: Comments (9) :: Digg It!