Monday, January 31, 2011

Higher taxes and More Redevelopment

It isn’t often that I read the letters to the editor in the Orange County Register, much less get irritated enough to comment on them.  However, today is a two-for. 

The first letter, written by Mary Kidwell of La Habra sees fit to bash the Tea Party.  No harm there, everyone has an opinion about the Tea Party, but her letter asks the following:
“I feel I paid my fair share for all that we received. What did you pay? If you are middle class, I highly doubt that you paid more than 7 percent.”

Well Mary, I am in that middle class you mention and I give well over 20% of my income to the State and Uncle Sam.  If you include excise taxes and those “fees” at the DMV and gas pump, I give more than 50% of my hard-earned money to the government.  Based on what you and I are paying in taxes, it looks like one of two things has happened:
A) You are paying too little for the services you enjoy, or B) I am paying too much for the services you enjoy.  Either way you slice it, I’m paying the difference so that you can enjoy those government services. 

Mary also contends that It’s also just a little ridiculous that most seen at Tea Party rallies are obviously Social Security and Medicare recipients.” I’ll be 38 in a few days and I am OBVIOUSLY NOT receiving Social Security or Medicare.  So far, Mary’s stereotype of Tea Party supporters (anti-tax abuse advocates) doesn’t seem to pan out. 

I encourage anyone who would like to pay more in taxes to go ahead and send a donation to your government agency of choice.  Give them as much as you like, I’m sure they won’t mind. 

For the rest of us who feel we pay too much and actually do, be sure to elect leaders who won’t give away the company store.

One other letter to the editor got me fired up.  The owner of Renick Cadillac and Subaru, Leonard M. Renick, seems to think it is OK to spend taxpayer’s money on corporate welfare.  I suppose if I was in the business of trying to sell Cadillac’s and Subaru’s in Fullerton I might want a taxpayer-funded bailout too. 

Renick says, “It is not enough that [Norby's] influence as an elected official of Fullerton has left the city in a permanent state of dowdiness while Brea is a shining light of newness and economic vitality thanks to redevelopment?” 

He must be thinking of Mayor Pro Tem Don Bankhead.  During Bankhead’s 22 years on the dais Fullerton has gone from bad to worse.  Norby hasn’t been on the Fullerton City Council for the past 8 years to oppose any Fullerton Redevelopment Agency boondoggles.  And in those 8 years all of Bankhead’s redevelopment money has done nothing for the roads and sidewalks of north or west Fullerton.

Also worth pointing out is that Brea receives a large portion of their tax revenue from their industrial parks and their retail mall.  Couple that with the simple fact that Brea has a very small population base and you see how Brea manages to get by.

But the best quote is saved for last.  “Now, Norby throws in with Gov. Jerry Brown to strip cities of their ability to decide locally what would improve the local scene/economy and send the money to Sacramento so that Jerry Brown can buy more teacher and police union votes. Redevelopment is not perfect but local control beats the alternative.”

Mr. Renick didn’t get the memo that RDAs can not spend it wherever they want on whatever they want.  The funds are legally encumbered by welfare projects and not the corporate type of welfare either.  The worse part is that the RDA can borrow against the future tax revenues without voter approval.  The Fullerton Redevelopment agency borrowed $29-million to meet their low-income housing funding requirements because they had already spent too much on other non-housing projects.  

It doesn’t take a highly educated person to recognize that using tax revenue to prop up car dealers or any other business is just wrong. 

Government exists to provide for the people that which the people cannot provide for themselves.  It does not exist to bail out businesses or operate slush funds for the politically well connected. 

2 comments:

  1. Brown says he wants to eliminate redevelopment agencies, which raise money by diverting all increases in property tax revenue away from other agencies that normally would share them, and redistribute the funds to local governments’ general funds. The proposal is part of a strategy Brown has outlined to pare the state deficit by cutting state funding of local services.

    The above was from the Press democrat in Santa Rosa Ca.

    This is just the beginning of cuts and new or more taxes. In his speech tonight, Governor Brown didn't propose a single program or bill that would cost the state money. When is the last time you heard a state of the state like that?

    ReplyDelete
  2. "Brown says he wants to eliminate redevelopment agencies, which raise money by diverting all increases in property tax revenue away from other agencies that normally would share them, and redistribute the funds to local governments’ general funds. The proposal is part of a strategy Brown has outlined to pare the state deficit by cutting state funding of local services."
    Tom, for years a lot of people have been crying fowl on the RDA. The idea of killing it for obvious reasons is not new. It is amazing and ironic that it takes a Democratic Governor to do the work the work of the Republican Party.
    If brown tackles pensions and taxes with the same independence, I just might have to vote for him in 4-years. This state needs help and raising taxes to pay for the bad decisions and wasteful programs of the last 50 years is not the answer.

    ReplyDelete

Greg Sebourn

Orange County Bail Bonds

The Beauty of a Storm

The Beauty of a Storm
Orange County, Ca.

My Grandma - A Eulogy

LET'S TALK ABOUT 1914 FOR A MOMENT.



FOR STARTERS, GRANDMA WAS BORN TUESDAY, DECEMBER 22, 1914 IN HER FAMILY'S ATWOOD RANCH HOUSE.



IT IS WORTH NOTING THOSE ALSO BORN IN 1914:

JACK LALANNE

JOE DIMAGGIO

DANNY THOMAS



AND WHO DIED IN 1914:

JOHN MUIR, THE FAMOUS NATURALIST FOR WHICH NUMEROUS ROADS, PARKS, HOTELS, AND NATURE RESERVES ARE NAMED.



IT IS ALSO WORTH NOTING THAT IN 1914 WOODROW WILSON SIGNS MOTHER'S DAY PROCLAMATION AND BABE RUTH MAKES HIS MAJOR LEAGUE DEBUT WITH THE RED SOX. MOTHER'S DAY AND BASEBALL- TWO OF MY FAVORITES!! (PERHAPS HER NICKNAME "BABE" CAME FROM BABE RUTH???)



GRANDMA WAS BORN INTO A PERIOD OF TIME FILLED WITH TURMOIL. IN JUNE OF 1914 ARCHDUKE FRANZS FERDINAND WAS ASSASSINATED. WITHIN ONE MONTH WORLD WAR I RAGED ACROSS EUROPE. TWO DAYS AFTER HER BIRTH HOWEVER, GERMAN AND BRITISH TROOPS INTERRUPTED WWI TO CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS. (PERHAPS THEY PAUSE KNOWING THAT A GREAT WOMAN WAS BORNE) WORLD WAR I CONTINUED UNTIL THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES IN 1919.



ALTHOUGH SHE WAS ONLY 5 YEARS OLD, SHE SAW THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS CREATED AND THE 19TH AMENDMENT WAS APPROVED BY THE U.S. CONGRESS GUARANTEEING THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN TO VOTE.



SHE LIVED THROUGH MANY NOTABLE EVENTS. LIKE THE 1933 LONG BEACH EARTHQUAKE OR WHEN ATWOOD FLOODED ALONG WITH MOST OF ORANGE COUNTY IN 1938 AND THE FLOOD-WATERS CLAIMED MORE THAN 50 PEOPLE, 43 OF WHICH WERE FROM ATWOOD! ALL OF THIS DURING A TIME THAT WE READ ABOUT IN SCHOOL AND KNOWN AS "THE GREAT DEPRESSION". SOMEWHERE IN ALL OF THAT SHE FOUND THE LOVE OF HER LIFE, GRANDPA LEO, GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL, GOT MARRIED, AND HAD KIDS!



THEN THERE WAS WORLD WAR II. FROM PEARL HARBOR TO HIROSHIMA, GRANDMA WAS RAISING MY UNCLE BOB AND MOM ARLINE. WITH AIR-RAID SIRENS AND BLACKOUTS SHE WAS A WIFE AND MOTHER. WHAT A TIME TO RAISE CHILDREN! I BET GRANDMA'S PARENTS WERE ABEL TO TELL HER A THING OR TWO ABOUT RAISING KIDS IN WARTIME.



GRANDMA WAS THERE WHEN THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA HELD THEIR 3RD ANNUAL NATIONAL JAMBOREE IN 1953. SHE SAW AIRBASES OPEN IN '42 AND CLOSE IN '99. SHE WATCHED WALTER KNOTT START UP HIS BERRY FARM AND WALT DISNEY TURN ORANGE GROVES AND STRAWBERRY PATCHES INTO DISNEYLAND!



SHE SAW THE HORSE AND CARRIAGE FADE AWAY INTO HISTORY AND SPACE TRAVEL EXPLODE BEFORE HER WITH THE FIRST LUNAR LANDING. JUST IMAGINE HOW MUCH TECHNOLOGY HAS CHANGED OVER THE LAST 100 YEARS. FROM TUBE RECTIFIERS TO SUPERCONDUCTORS; FROM TRANS-ATLANTIC TELEGRAPH CABLES TO SATELLITE TV.



SHE SAW MORE IN HER 93 YEARS THAN MOST OF US WILL EVER READ ABOUT, LET ALONE LIVE THROUGH!



OF THOSE 93 YEARS IT IS MY HONOR TO HAVE BEEN HER GRANDSON FOR 35 OF THEM. SHE WAS MY MOTHER WHEN MOM HAD TO WORK. SHE WIPED MY NOSE AND PUT FOOD IN MY MOUTH. SHE LET ME PLAY WITH GRANDPA EVEN THOUGH SHE NEEDED HIM TO TAKE HER TO THE STORE. SHE WAS MY GRANDMA AND I WILL MISS HER IMMENSELY.



JUST LOOK AROUND THIS ROOM; SHE DID THIS. SHE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR BRINGING SO MANY GOOD PEOPLE INTO THIS WORLD AND TOGETHER TODAY. THIS IS HER LEGACY.



A Dedication To My Loving Wife, Stacey. Thank you for all you do for me!

Brad Paisley - I Thought I Loved You Then


I remember trying not to stare the night that I first met you
You had me mesmerized
3 weeks later in the front porch light taking 45 min to kiss you goodnight
I hadn’t told you yet but I thought I loved you then

Chorus
Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Like a river meets the sea
Stronger than it’s ever been
We’ve come so far since that day
And I thought I loved you then.

I remember taking you back to right where I first met you
You were so surprised
There were people around
But I didn’t care I got down on one knee right there
And once again I thought I loved you then

Chorus
Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Like a river meets the sea
Stronger than it’s ever been
We’ve come so far since that day
And I thought I loved you then.

I can just see you with a baby on the way
I can just see you when your hair is turning gray
What I can’t see is how I’m ever gonna love you more
But I’ve said that before.

Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Well look back some day at this moment that we’re in
And I'll look at you and say I thought I loved you then
And I thought I loved you then...

Download AutoCAD's Educational Version