The people of California have voted for new dams and haven't gotten any. They've voted for roads and now money is being taken away.
Oct 09, 2019
California sees itself as a leader in the world. It's not necessarily how others see us. We mostly write about water issues and certainly our water policy is in disarray. But there are a lot of other issues that make living here difficult. We have high poverty and homelessness. A recent headline said "California's roads are some of the worst in the nation and getting worse." Former Governor Jerry Brown said we have $187B in unmet infrastructure needs, not just roads and water but also dams and bridges. The unfunded liability of state pensions has been estimated at a trillion. California has the highest state income tax, one of the highest sales taxes.
Nevertheless, California is putting policies into place that will attract people who need services like health care for people here illegally. No telling how much spending will be done in the name of climate change.
To pay for all this there are always more bonds and taxes. In 2014 Californians passed Prop 1, the $7.1B Water Storage Bond by a 67-33% vote. The public clearly wants to solve the problem. But the storage projects that applied for the money don't pass the 'public benefit' test of the water bureaucrats. It's 2019 and still no new storage.
When the people of California threatened to repeal the state's 12-cent per gallon gas tax by getting 940,000 signatures to put it on the 2018 ballot, they encountered State Attorney General Xavier Baccera who changed the wording on the ballot to "Eliminates Recently Enacted Road Repair and Transportation Funding by Repealing Revenues Dedicated For Those Purposes." Nothing about repealing the tax. Voters elected to keep the tax and they were assured the money would be used for road building and repair.
Now the Governor has signed an executive order "redirecting $5 billion in highway-centric transportation funding toward rail projects with the overarching goal of reducing greenhouse gasses and cutting fuel consumption."
The people of California have voted for new dams and haven't gotten any. They've voted for roads and now money is being taken away. Remember all that the next time you take a bumpy ride down the highway.
Gov. Newsom’s Executive Order Authorizing Theft of Voter-Approved Gas Tax Money
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