With campaigns initiated for two key November ballot measures, Yes on Proposition 30, the Schools and Safety Protection Act, and No on Proposition 32, the Special Exemptions Act, ACSA is following media reaction to each.
The San Luis Obispo Tribune has endorsed Prop. 30. In the editorial “Without funds, state’s schools may be irreparably harmed,” the newspaper stated: “Finally, we have a chance this November to approve a tax measure that will prevent the further slide of K-12 schools and higher education. We must take advantage of it.
“We strongly urge a “yes” vote on Proposition 30 – the combination sales and income tax measure proposed by (Gov. Jerry) Brown.
“The temporary measure would increase sales tax by a quarter-cent for the next four years, and would raise income tax for Californians earning more than $250,000 per year for seven years.
“By comparison, Molly Munger’s competing tax measure – Proposition 38 – would raise income taxes on those earning as little as $7,316 per year and for a period of 12 years. We urge support for Proposition 30. It’s the stronger measure, and it has a better chance of passing.
“If Proposition 30 fails, it will so undermine public education that it could take years, even decades, to pull out of it. In the interim, a generation of students will have been irreparably harmed. And no, we are not crying wolf.
“Think about what’s already occurred in our local schools: the increases in class size; loss of elective courses and extracurricular activities; teacher layoffs; reduction in teaching days; cancellation of free public transportation. … Without an infusion of revenue from Proposition 30, it will only get worse.”
No on 32
A Mercury News editorial recommends a “No” vote on Prop. 32.
“If Proposition 32 did what supporters claim – limit all special interest money from corrupting the political system – we would heartily endorse it,” the paper stated. “It doesn’t. It is a deceptive sham that would magnify the influence of wealthy interests while shutting out many middle-class voters. Vote no on Proposition 32. …
“The real elephant in the room for campaign reforms is super PACs, which can raise unlimited money, some anonymously, and which increasingly dominate political spending. Without paycheck deductions, unions would have no way of participating, but billionaires and businesses could still spend freely.
“Leaving aside the question of whether that's constitutional, it wouldn't apply to large numbers of businesses, including real estate investment trusts and sole proprietorships. But it would apply to all unions,” the paper said.
The editorial board debunks claims that public employee unions have far too much power in California politics.
“According to data compiled by the Center for Investigative Reporting..., the top labor unions spent $284 million on initiatives, candidates and parties from 2001 to 2011.
“But all together, the top contributors among the wealthy and business interests spent $931 million, swamping labor. Eliminating union spending would worsen this disparity, making it nearly impossible for millions of middle-class voters to make their voices heard.
“Indeed, some of the largest contributors to the 32 campaign are the same wealthy men who have spent millions to influence politics over the past decade.”
For more information on the campaigns, visit www.acsa.org/election.