Newsom’s First Budget Goes Easy on Taxes

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

In his recently-released state budget proposal, Governor Newsom made two important and supportive statements on California’s business and economic climate. First, he reinforced the need for state fiscal stability. While enjoying the benefit of more than $20 billion in surplus revenues, he chose to direct most of the surplus either to bolstering the Rainy Day […]

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Housing Woes Threaten California’s Middle Class

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

California’s housing crisis is the worst threat to our middle class lifestyle since the recession. Our median home listing price is nearly twice the national average, and besides Hawaii is higher than any other state. Our median rental rate is half again higher than the national average, and is also the highest in the nation (other than Hawaii). When […]

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California’s Next Governor Will Have a Long “Want-List.”

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

On Day One of his new administration, Gavin Newsom or John Cox will enunciate his vision for California, and call on the Legislature to implement it, whether it’s spurring more housing, increasing school funding, eliminating the new “sanctuary” law, cutting taxes or “resisting” the Trump Administration. He will set the agenda for how to spend […]

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#MeToo, But Maybe Not For You

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

Preventing sexual harassment and protecting victims has been a high priority for the Legislature – fallout from the #MeToo movement sweeping politics, the media and Hollywood, and especially on the heels of harassment scandals in the State Capitol. So it’s noteworthy that one of the signature bills to combat sexual harassment explicitly exempts the Legislature and other […]

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High Court Ruling Raises Questions on Passage of Local Special Taxes 

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

How many voters does it take to pass a local special tax? Since Proposition 13 in 1978, voters have had the final say on local tax increases. A subsequent initiative passed in 1996, Proposition 218, further required most local tax measures to gain approval by two-thirds of voters, whether proposed by a local government agency […]

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The Legislature Nose-to-Nose with Ballot Initiatives

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

The talk of the Capitol last week was of “the Hertzberg bill,” which changed the calendar for certain activities related to ballot measures, with the intent to ease legislative fixes to proposed ballot measures – if proponents were amenable. Though the bill was enacted in 2014, the new process hasn’t been employed until this year, when […]

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Breaking Up is Hard to Do – and Should be

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

Tim Draper believes California is three states struggling within the boundaries of one, and wants to set them free. Voters will have the chance in November to decide if they share his vision that more governments make better governance. Spoiler Alert: Breaking up is hard to do – which is a very good thing. The […]

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The Split Roll Property Tax May be on Ice, but Make Way for the Split Roll Sales Tax.

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

Senator Bob Hertzberg last week unveiled a long-promised “modernization” of the state sales tax, but it’s mostly just an old-fashioned tax shift from shoppers to businesses. The guts of the plan are simple: over a three-year transition period, cut the existing state sales tax rate by two percentage points (from 4.75% to 2.75%) and enact a new […]

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Privacy Initiative Won’t Stem Internet Abuses

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

It’s not surprising that proponents of the so-called “California Consumer Privacy Act” would want to draw attention to the latest controversies around internet privacy. Not surprising – but dishonest. The initiative has nothing to do with the situation in the headlines. The ballot measure would not have prevented it and doesn’t even contemplate the scenario. […]

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Federal Tax Reform Means More Business Taxes for California

Loren Kaye
President of the California Foundation for Commerce and Education

California’s corporate tax base may increase by up to 12 percent as a result of federal tax reform legislation, according to a study recently released by the State Tax Research Center. This means that revenues from California’s corporate income tax could increase by as much as $1.3 billion – without any action by state lawmakers to increase corporate […]

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