Saturday, October 14, 2006

"The 1 Plan to Rebuild California"

"The 1 Plan to Rebuild California" is touted as "supported by people who don't usually agree on anything." I wouldn't say that's entirely true, because they're all career politicians and special interest groups. They want work for their constituents paid for by the state without having to ask for tax increases (especially) during a general election year.
The "Plan" is being marketed as a single bloc of votes: "Vote Yes on the Ones," which may be unfortunate because it lumps Prop. 1A with debt-financed spending programs.
I wrote a bit about Prop. 1A the other day.
Proposition 1B would authorize $19.9 Billion from general obligation bonds for state and local transportation construction.
The only identified highway is SR-99. One half of one percent would go toward port and harbor security.
Proposition 1C would authorize $2.9 Billion from general obligation bonds; about half to continue funding for existing programs and the rest for "development programs" (pork).
Proposition 1D would authorize $10.4 Billion from general obligation bonds for education facilities construction and improvements. Not to open or operate them... just to build them.
Proposition 1E would authorize $4.1 Billion from general obligation bonds for "flood management" projects... okay, primarily one project: $3 Billion for the Central Valley Flood Control System.
If my math skills haven't failed me again, Californians are looking at borrowing about $37.3 Billion almost all of it (except for about $1.5 Billion in homeownership loans) to be repaid... with interest... about $63.3 Billion over 30 years... by taxpayers!

$37.3 Billion to rebuild California "without increasing taxes!" There ought to be an asterisk and fine print somewhere that says "this year." This single issue, assuming no new bond issues in the future (AS IF!!), is expected to push California's debt service ratio to 6% in the 2010-11 fiscal year.
The Riverside Press-Enterprise opened
their article on Proposition 1B with:

"Local transportation leaders say they expect plenty of money to flow to
Riverside and San Bernardino counties... even though it does not include
specific projects in the Inland area."

Riverside and San Bernardino counties are populated by people who can't afford to live in Los Angeles County and managed by people who wanted their same jobs in Orange County. These people are notoriously nuts (in my humble opinion)... incurably Republican. Mary Bono is still representing them in the House.

I am encouraged that it looks like support for "The 1 Plan" is dropping, I am not optimistic that my fellow voters are going to (a) read through a 192-page Voter Guide before they (b) VOTE.

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