OPINION: Reject push to lower threshold in tax votes


California Gov. Jerry Brown joins tax reformer Howard Jarvis at a 1978 news conference in Los Angeles following the passage of Prop. 13, the tax-limiting measure that has saved California homeowners billions of dollars. State legislators in 2014 should drop efforts to undermine parts of the landmark initiative.
In 2013, 18 state legislatures across the United States made pro-growth changes to their state’s tax structures, positioning their states to be much more economically competitive in the coming years; meanwhile, the California Legislature, in the wake of a massive retroactive tax increase passed in 2012, considered numerous legislative items aimed at making it easier for local governments to impose, extend or increase taxes on their residents.

 Make it easier to tax residents? California is already an extremely high-tax state and, according to the California Taxpayers Association, is home to the highest sales tax, gasoline tax and personal income tax levels in the nation. California has one of the highest corporate income tax rates, as well, and saddles economic activity with complex and costly regulatory processes. It’s astonishing that despite such high rates across major tax categories alongside such expansive regulatory authority, lawmakers still believe it should be easier to tax hardworking Californians even further.

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By Marc Steinorth @ Taxpayer Advocate and Businessman from Rancho Cucamonga