Global Warming Zealots Invade California’s University System

Senator Dutton married his wife, Andrea Guillen, in 1981. Andrea, a fourth generation Chino resident, is the Department Director of Radiology at Chaffey Community College. He and Andrea have a daughter, Kara, who received her Master’s in 2010 from the University of La Verne, and is now working in the banking industry. This week yet […]

Time to Let the Sun Shine on Air Board’s Shady Accounting Practices

There’s an old saying in politics:  “Sunshine is the best disinfectant.”  Unfortunately, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) has been operating under cover of dense fog for several years now when it comes to accounting for millions of dollars in “administrative fees” it spent on managing AB 32, the state’s global warming law. To date, […]

Sacramento’s Failures Bring No Holiday Cheer

This holiday season, Sacramento policymakers have little reason for good cheer.  Deficit spending, high taxes and excessive regulations are the equivalent of a large lump of coal in politicians’ stockings.

The public gets it.  Most Californians appropriately blame California’s leaders for our failure to act: the Governor’s approval rating has sunk to 27%, while a record low 17% approve of the Legislature’s work.

Reforms are long overdue.  Recent legislative hearings on improving California’s government are a good start-but mere talk isn’t enough.  While political leaders talk, Californians continue to lose their jobs due to the decisions made in Sacramento.

If the economy feels worse in California than the rest of the nation, that’s because it is.  Fifteen metro areas across the nation have unemployment rates of 15% or higher.  Of these, an astounding nine are in California.  The national unemployment rate of 10 percent is more than two points lower than California’s rate of 12.3%.

A Gun to Our Head: The Environment or Jobs?

What if someone put a gun to your head and forced you to make a decision between your job and the environment? It’s not a fair choice, is it? No one should be forced to choose between having a job and taking care of the planet. Yet all too often this choice is being made for you—in Sacramento—as politicians adopt extreme environmental policies that kill jobs.

The laws passed each year by the Legislature often sound good. They are disguised with friendly sounding names. Yet history has proven and our current record unemployment numbers illustrate that these new laws often create more problems than they have solve. They spend your tax dollars to establish new agencies filled with state bureaucrats. These bureaucracies grow, not only with more government workers but with the power to change your life. These government agencies impose mandate upon mandate on everyone from small business owners to school teachers.

For example, an unelected body in this state, the California Energy Commission, recently imposed new regulations that are sure to kill more jobs in this state by limiting the types of televisions that can be sold. They did this without any scientific proof that limiting TV sales will actually improve the environment.

California’s Shocking Jobless Numbers

Just how many Californians need a job? The answer may be larger than you think.

Judging by the official unemployment rate of 12.2%, California has more unemployed workers than the entire population of New Mexico. To provide a job for every unemployed worker, California’s economy would have to generate nearly 2.3 million new jobs.

But a growing number of “underemployed” workers in California’s labor force aren’t included in the conventional unemployment statistic. These workers, who want full-times jobs but have settled for part-time work, now number more than 1.4 million.

Add 2.3 million and 1.4 million and you get 3.7 million. That number, which exceeds the entire population of Oklahoma, represents a startling 20% of California’s labor force. Simply put, one in five California workers wants full-time work, but can’t find it.

The Bloodletting of California’s Economy

The nation is mired in the deepest recession since the Great Depression, and job losses continue to mount. But as bad as things are nationally, California is faring far worse—with a double-digit unemployment rate exceeding the national average by more than two percent. In the Inland Empire, which I represent, unemployment is now above 14%.

Yet state lawmakers and regulators seem oblivious to the hard times ordinary Californians are facing. They continue to suck the life out of the Golden State’s economy by prescribing more taxes and red tape.

Take for instance a recent decision by the State Water Resources Control Board. Not content to wait for federal standards, the board voted to impose burdensome and questionable new requirements on construction projects across the state. Businesses who fail to meet these restrictive new regulations face fines of up to $27,000 per day.