I will give Brentwood City Council Candidate Carissa Pillow credit for being honest and fully transparent on where she stands on State Proposition 30-35 via Facebook Posts. It also gives Brentwood voters insights as to what she believes and if they should support her or not. While its not good political strategy (I shouldn’t do it either, but I still give my positions), it does promote open communication to the public. While I do not agree with her on all her positions, I enjoy candidates who are transparent even if it may ultimately cost them some votes on election day.
Let’s talk about the issues, proposition by proposition. This was brought up by one of the previous posters on my board. I haven’t endorsed any proposition one way or the other for a variety of reasons. Nevertheless, I am interested in having a candid discussion. Let’s start with Prop 30. Yes or No?
For me, proposition 30 is a “No”. Over the course of the last 8 years of living in California, I have seen evidence of money grabs in the form of taxes and unfunded propositions time and time again. The income tax rate in California is so high that when I came out from Texas, I actually thought that my paycheck was wrong… until I saw the income tax withdrawal from my check. While I understand that our schools need money, I can’t support a higher income tax rate to achieve the goal of increasing funds to the schools. The state needs to take a good hard look at the existing programs and make necessary cuts. In the mean time, I will chose to donate my money to our local schools directly. That makes much more sense to me than trusting Sacramento to properly appropriate my paycheck. IMHO.
Proposition 31 is a proposition we haven’t heard a lot about. This is the “Government Performance and Accountability Act”. Yes or No?
I tend to really look at the bottom line when it comes to these propositions. This proposition will cost our State budget $200, million annually. Initially I said, nope, not going to vote for a proposition that hurts the State budget. Then I read a little further. The prop actually diverts more money back to the local governments, which we NEED, and forces the State to stop enacting legislation that can’t be paid for. Wow! Common sense? That’s refreshing! So for me: Yes on 31. I’d love to hear other people’s take on Prop 31.
Prop 32: This is apparently a proposition that has flared up emotions in the public. It is a prop that prohibits unions from auto deducting from employee’s paycheck for the purpose of funding campaigns and prohibits corporate contributions to committees. Ahhhh… Campaign finance reform. I’m sure that this is going to be a “loaded” question! Prop 32: Friends tell me your opinion. Yes or no?
Ah… All of those union fans out there are going to love me for this! Again, I have to share the bottom line here. For me the bottom line is fiscal impact. Again the legislation is UNFUNDED. That to me is an absolute showstopper. Fiscal impact is projected to exceed a million dollars that the State and Local government will have to bear to provide enforcement. If they can’t demonstrate the money for the prop before it is passed, I can not advocate for it. Campaign finance reform is necessary, yes. But, if I can only afford a Honda, I don’t get to buy the Lexus!
Prop 33: Auto Insurance companies will be able to adjust prices based on a driver’s history of insurance coverage. Interesting. The argument for the proposition is that the insurance companies will be able to offer a discount when you make “the switch”. The argument against is that sometimes people lapse on their auto insurance for legitimate reasons and that this will penalize those drivers. Friends, what say you: Aye or Nay?
You know, I think far more often than not insured drivers lapse for budgetary reasons. And not receiving a discount is not punishment. So, I say: Aye. The fiscal impact to the state is nil and people who play by the rules and drive with car insurance reap rewards. Aye it is!
Prop 34: Death Penalty. To punish by death or not to punish by death. That’s the question. If this law passes, the criminal justice savings is: $130 million dollars annually. There is a initial one time cost of $100 million dollars in grants to get the local and state government rolling on this prop. Friends: Yes or No?
For me prop 34 is difficult. When I think of all of the traumas that I have seen and the devastation that families have endured over the pointless loss of a loved one, it literally brings tears to my eyes. Unfortunately, for me, murder doesn’t justify murder. I think it is really time for Americans to take a good hard look at the topic of violence, how it’s glamorized and how it is reinforced by our legal system. My answer is: Thou shalt not kill. No. Killing is inexcusable whether it is by an individual, or by the State. Lock them up in solitary for life. That is plenty to drive a person insane for the crimes they have committed. And the fiscal impact is $130 million dollars saved annually. For me that’s a win-win. It’s not very conservative of me. I’m finding that I’m pretty middle of the line on social issues.
Prop 35: Human Trafficking. A yes vote on Prop 35 means: increased prison sentences and offenders are required to register as sex offenders. It also forces these offenders to disclose Internet activities and identities. Fiscal impact: “A few million dollars annually to state and local governments for addressing human trafficking offenses.” These costs *potentially* increase fine revenue to offset the cost of the legislation. Friends: Yes or No?
For me, this was the easiest of all propositions. So many of these operations exist at the expense of women internationally. I will always support laws that punish this kind of human degradation. Prop 35 is a hearty “Yes” vote for me!
She stated Props 36-40 to be reviewed later!