Attorney General Reins In Shady Bond Practices

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

It’s not often that taxpayers get good news, especially in tax-happy California. Even more surprising is when the good news is an official opinion from the state’s Attorney General, someone not normally associated with friendly treatment to taxpayers. Last November, this column noted that local governments, especially school districts, were prone to engage in questionable […]

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Don’t Blame Proposition 13 for the Housing Crisis

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Notwithstanding California’s leftward drift, Prop 13 remains remarkably popular. Indeed, polling suggests that if Prop 13 were on the ballot today, it would pass by about the same two-thirds margin that it did in 1978. But the enduring embrace of this landmark measure by California homeowners is a huge irritant to those who want ever more […]

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New Taxes Are Not Necessary

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

There is an old expression, “carrying coals to Newcastle,” to describe a useless activity or fool’s errand. Sort of like shipping pineapples to Hawaii or, bringing it closer to home, sending more tax dollars to Sacramento. The truth is, Sacramento is awash in cash. The Legislature’s budget analyst estimates that this fiscal year will end […]

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What Are Taxpayers Thankful for in 2015?

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

With the recent terror attacks against France, America’s oldest ally, most Americans are rightfully concerned for the welfare of our friends abroad as well as our own safety. With the French, we share a common heritage of a dedication to liberty. The Statue of Liberty that stands proudly in the harbor of New York is […]

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​Tax Raisers Like Non-Voters​

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Did you know that there was an election last Tuesday? Not many voters did, and the tax-and-spend crowd likes it that way. In this little publicized election, 29 out of 40 local tax increase measures passed. Michael Coleman, Founder of the California Local Government Finance Almanac, notes the significance:  “There were more local revenue measures […]

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Governor Brown’s Attack on Prop 218 Is a Threat to the Middle Class

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Governor Brown has foolishly decided to poke a hornets’ nest with his signing of Assembly Bill 401.  While AB 401 itself isn’t particularly controversial, as it merely authorizes a couple of state agencies to devise a plan by 2018 to assist low income individuals with paying their water bills, the problem is what Brown wrote […]

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The CA Supreme Court Considers: Can Legislature Put an “Advisory” Measure on the Ballot

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Yesterday, the California Supreme Court heard the case of Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Assoc. v. Padilla, which involves the legality of the California Legislature’s attempt to place an “advisory” measure on the 2014 November ballot.  The Supreme Court previously, at the request of HJTA, removed Prop 49 from the 2014 ballot.  Today’s hearing is on the merits and will […]

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End of Discussion

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

“End of discussion!” is what those on the political left yell in your face when they know they are losing an argument. It is also the name of a compelling new book by Mary Katharine Ham and Guy Benson with the revealing subtitle of “How the Left’s Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes […]

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For a New Legislative Model Look to Texas

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

Would-be reformers have filed an initiative that, if adopted by voters, would make the California Legislature one of the largest – if not the largest – legislative bodies in the world. The Neighborhood Legislature Reform Act (NLRA) would require one Senator for every 10,000 Californians and one Assembly representative for every 5,000. This would mean […]

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Certainty in Taxation: Prop. 13’s Best Feature

Jon Coupal
President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

​In its more than 160 plus year history, few things have remained constant in California.  However, since the 1800’s California has taxed all classes of property the same. Thus, when the iconic Prop 13 passed in 1978, it did not differentiate between different kinds of property.  All real property – whether residential or commercial – […]

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