Fire Fee Suspension Not Enough

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

On behalf of working Californians and our citizen taxpayer members, HJTA is profoundly disappointed in the political “deal” which was struck yesterday to extend California’s “cap and trade” law.  Nothing can justify conservative support for a law that will surely result in at least a 71 cents increase in the cost of gasoline with absolutely zero […]

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“Follow the Money” Report Reveals Billions in Government Waste, Fraud, and Abuse

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Millions of Californians will file tax returns this Tax Day and many wonder whether the billions they send to their government actually goes to good use. The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association released the annual Follow the Money report documenting Sacramento’s repeated failure to properly manage taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars. Examples covered in the report include failure to account […]

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Is it time to abandon the Bear Flag?

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

The Bear Flag, which first appeared as the symbol of the short-lived Bear Flag Republic in 1846, was made the official flag of California in 1911. The flag displays a California grizzly bear which, in a bit of irony, is extinct in California with the last sighting taking place in 1922. Without any disrespect to […]

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Local Governments Rigging Elections

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

With all the state and local taxes on the November ballot, one would think that government at all levels in California was starved for revenue. But even a cursory review of the Golden State’s “tax machine” reveals that the tax burden is already too heavy for many to bear. California has the highest income rate […]

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SB 1298 Is an Attack on Prop 218

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Mike Lewis in his column published yesterday in Fox and Hounds makes numerous assertions that are simply not accurate. For starters, it is incorrect to say that SB 1298 is not an attack on Proposition 218. In fact, it would undermine one of the key provisions in Proposition 218, the right to vote on taxes […]

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Controller Dead Wrong on Property Taxes

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

California’s State Controller, Betty Yee, normally displays a measured, albeit liberal, view of California fiscal affairs. While viewed as reasonably competent and not given to hyperbole, her recent statement in a local government blog was one she must have known to be flat wrong. The blog, called County Voice, is disseminated by the California State Association […]

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Lessons from Chicago on the Value of Prop 13

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

In Chicago, escalating property taxes are headline news.  With the average property tax bill due to go up by 13 percent – and more increases in subsequent years virtually guaranteed – home ownership in the Windy City is in deep peril. No one seems happy except the moving companies. This drastic tax increase is the […]

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Budget Deception: Weird Accounting Diminishes Accountability

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

This week, after reaching agreement with Governor Brown, the California Legislature will pass the state budget for the 2016-17 fiscal year. In so doing, it will meet its Constitutional deadline of June 15th. A few weeks ago, this column attempted to provide some clarity to ordinary citizen taxpayers on basic state budget issues. This included […]

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Response to Will Kempton on Transportation Taxes

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

  Last week’s column presented the case for strong opposition to any new transportation taxes in California. But on Thursday, the Executive Director of Transportation California, Will Kempton, published a response in Fox and Hounds, which repeated the need for higher taxes. Will Kempton is a respected transportation expert who agrees with the central premise of […]

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Profligate Waste Negates Justification for Transportation Tax Hike

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

A personal digression: My father was head of the Iowa Department of Transportation (then called the Iowa Highway Commission) in the late ’60s and early ’70s before he was appointed by President Ford to serve as Deputy Federal Highway Administrator. (Of course, he lost that job when Jimmy Carter became president, but he continued to […]

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