California’s budget crisis reached historic proportions this year, with the recently signed budget being the latest in the history of the state. Despite the passage, California is still looking at a $7 billion shortfall. Governor Arnold Swarzenegger wrote a letter to Treasury Secretary Henry “Santa Claus” Paulsen for help.
Now the terminator is suggesting that California may not need a loan after all. Swarzenegger suggested that the citizens of California will be hit yet again with another bond initiative.
One of the problems with California is that chunks of the budget are mandated to go to certain things, like education. It is relatively inflexible, which leads to overfunding for some things, while leaving shortfalls in others. The Democratically controlled legislature, long beholden to unions and other special interests, continue to push for higher taxes to offset the now, annual shortfalls the state faces.
Another significant problem state faces is the problem of illegal immigration. According to the Federation For Immigration Reform, illegal immigration is costing the state more than $10 billion a year. If you include costs for education, health care, incarceration, and other expenses related to so called “anchor babies”, the American born children of illegal aliens, that $10 billion total would certainly rise.
The Democrats that control California are not inclined to change. When Swarzenegger placed a redistricting measure on the ballot in an attempt to breakup the Democratic monopoly in California, every special interest that had business with the state threw their resources behind its opposition-and the measure was soundly defeated. In the opinion of many Californians, Swarzenegger has been a Democrat ever since.
When state Senator Tom McClintock (the man who should have been governor) came to Swarzenegger warning him of the impending disaster, Swarzenegger told him “the people don’t want to hear bad news,”. McClintock, a man who in interviews uncannily predicted what would happen with the state budget months before it actually happened, was, as most Republicans are in California, ignored. The state legislators used accounting gimmicry to pass a budget this time around. The Dems wanted massive tax increases, and if things stay the way they are in Sacramento, they’ll probably get them eventually.
As a side note, I hear that Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa has some crackpot idea for building new even in the face of this economy. How would he pull that off? The plan is torn apart by the man who should be Mayor of L.A.: Walter Moore. The Los Angeles Unified School District wants more money as well to build schools, even though they have currently have a surplus of bond money for just that. And the beat the taxpayers senseless party rolls on in California…