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  1. #1
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    Budget Passed...Any info on the State Parks?

    The big picture results were no surprise, living as we do in a state with minority-party-rule, but I haven't seen any info yet on how the state parks fared. Anybody know???
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  2. #2
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    Looks like the parks were spared, though there's little detail.

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...politics&tsp=1
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  3. #3
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    Read an article in the LA Times which said "most" of the parks slated for closure will stay open.

    It's still a clusterf@ck, though. I'd like to take Arnold and both houses of the legislature and dump them into the Bay.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by fat_weasel
    Read an article in the LA Times which said "most" of the parks slated for closure will stay open.

    It's still a clusterf@ck, though. I'd like to take Arnold and both houses of the legislature and dump them into the Bay.
    Might as well sink the whole state, get rid of the government and the people will vote the same people right back in

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by fat_weasel

    It's still a clusterf@ck, though. I'd like to take Arnold and both houses of the legislature and dump them into the Bay.
    There is enough pollution in the Bay as it is.

  6. #6
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    Idiots!!

    All they did was kick the can down the road for another year. By deferring expenses and accelerating tax collections they just guaranteed the same problem next year, only it will be a bigger mess to clean up. It seems being a vertebrate is not a requirement for the state legislature.

    2 more years and I retire with a PERS pension. Then I am moving outta here and away from this dysfunctional cabal of fiscal morons.

  7. #7
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    All I heard was that that the "Governor's office will determine which SP's to close" on the radio this morning. I'm guessing some of the more remote parks without campground facilities will be "closed".

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54
    Idiots!!

    All they did was kick the can down the road for another year. By deferring expenses and accelerating tax collections they just guaranteed the same problem next year, only it will be a bigger mess to clean up. It seems being a vertebrate is not a requirement for the state legislature.

    2 more years and I retire with a PERS pension. Then I am moving outta here and away from this dysfunctional cabal of fiscal morons.
    you are spot on...26 billion in deficit vs 15 billion in cuts...the rest is accounting stuff that leaves the state with a 10 billion deficit next year already. they have done this every year they have had a budget problem. the solutions are easy in theory but hard in political reality....

    1. fix prop 13 to eliminate the loopholes..would raise billions a year without elimination of the 1% cap. but yes some corps and people who have been in their homes a while will have to pay their fair share of prop taxes. use the added money for schools and lowering of other taxes.
    2. lower top tax brackets and raise lower brackets, or just raise lower brackets. no chance in heck, but the state needs to get away from relying so heavily on the top bracket. it's the single thing that's killing the state the most.
    3. fix the proposition process so that the budget can't get crushed by props that really should come out of the legislative process, including anything that changes the tax structure.
    4. leave the 2/3 budget passage requirement alone...it's the only thing keeping california from having 20% income tax rates!
    Last edited by cohenfive; 07-21-2009 at 09:40 AM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54
    Idiots!!

    All they did was kick the can down the road for another year. By deferring expenses and accelerating tax collections they just guaranteed the same problem next year, only it will be a bigger mess to clean up. It seems being a vertebrate is not a requirement for the state legislature.
    +1.

    And BTW, a budget agreement has been reached by the key players, but the full legislature doesn't vote on it for a couple more days.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54
    Idiots!!

    All they did was kick the can down the road for another year. By deferring expenses and accelerating tax collections they just guaranteed the same problem next year, only it will be a bigger mess to clean up. It seems being a vertebrate is not a requirement for the state legislature.

    2 more years and I retire with a PERS pension. Then I am moving outta here and away from this dysfunctional cabal of fiscal morons.
    Kinda funny, because state and local employee pensions are one of the things that are sinking the ship.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  11. #11
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    not the pensions themeselves

    But the loss in value as a result of the bad investments being made by Calpers. They just posted a loss equal to 25% of the entire profolio.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by zorg
    Kinda funny, because state and local employee pensions are one of the things that are sinking the ship.
    Glad I'm not the only one who found that ironic.

  13. #13
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    "The following parks were initially slated for closure by the governor: California State Capitol Museum, Governor's Mansion State Historic Park, Leland Stanford Mansion State Historic Park, State Indian Museum State Historic Park, Sutter's Fort State Historic Park, D. L. Bliss State Park, Donner Memorial State Park, Ed Z'berg Sugar Pine Point State Park, Emerald Bay State Park, Empire Mine State Historic Park and Kings Beach State Recreation Area. Which of these parks will remain open and which will close is likely to be known in the coming days."

    From here.

  14. #14
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    Calpers isn't worried. They have special drawing rights which means they get to be near the head of the line when times comes to siphoning off tax $$$.

    http://www.sacbee.com/ourregion/story/1336526.html

    "But CalPERS has the authority on its own to compel state and local governments to increase contributions, and the impact of higher rates could be substantial."

    Of course, the state could wind up like GM and go bankrupt being unable to afford the pension and health costs of their pensioners. Personally, I think that's guaranteed. Vallejo went bankrupt and so did San Diego before it. Why not an entire state?

    Quote Originally Posted by jrm
    But the loss in value as a result of the bad investments being made by Calpers. They just posted a loss equal to 25% of the entire profolio.

  15. #15
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    California is "borrowing" a few billion from local governments too. LA County is so pleased about this they're suing:

    The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to sue state lawmakers if they pursue plans to seize local redevelopment and highway taxes to cover the state budget deficit. Other local governments are expected to take similar actions to prevent major cuts proposed in the budget deal reached last night.

    From http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lano...d-to-join.html

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  16. #16
    MarkyMark
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    You're thinking small. Aiming for balancing the budget is for the little people--let's get RICH!

    Balanced budgets, respecting the law, thinking before acting, etc. is Un-American and for losers. Just look at the investment banks, AIG, GE, etc. Pull a huge scam, get rich, and let someone else (the losers) pick up the tab. It's the American way.

    A couple ideas:

    1) Create the Bank of California. Everyone in the state is an executive, except for politicians. We pay executives/everyone $10M/year and dole out huge bonuses. Sell all sorts of fake paper (i.e., muni bonds) and toxic junk like land and houses. We lay-off everyone with a sweeeet gold plated executive package. Arrange donations to Washington and CA politician re-elections funds thereby guaranteeing immunity from future prosecution and clawbacks. Declare bankruptcy and let the fools eat it.

    2) Hire the same people who pulled off the Enron scam to make money fast. Jeff Skilling is already sitting in jail so he's not worried about going to prison!

    Enron and their cronies pulled out tens of billions out of CA alone (probably more than the current $26B shortfall) and Enron didn't have pay any of that money back.

    /snark off

    Quote Originally Posted by cohenfive
    you are spot on...26 billion in deficit vs 15 billion in cuts...the rest is accounting stuff that leaves the state with a 10 billion deficit next year already. they have done this every year they have had a budget problem. the solutions are easy in theory but hard in political reality....

    1. fix prop 13 to eliminate the loopholes..would raise billions a year without elimination of the 1% cap. but yes some corps and people who have been in their homes a while will have to pay their fair share of prop taxes. use the added money for schools and lowering of other taxes.
    2. lower top tax brackets and raise lower brackets, or just raise lower brackets. no chance in heck, but the state needs to get away from relying so heavily on the top bracket. it's the single thing that's killing the state the most.
    3. fix the proposition process so that the budget can't get crushed by props that really should come out of the legislative process, including anything that changes the tax structure.
    4. leave the 2/3 budget passage requirement alone...it's the only thing keeping california from having 20% income tax rates!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrm
    But the loss in value as a result of the bad investments being made by Calpers. They just posted a loss equal to 25% of the entire profolio.
    They lost 25% only after posting years of double digit returns by taking risks they shouldn't have.

    Yes, it is the pensions, the whole concept of DB pensions is an anachronism that will be retired one way(bankruptcy) or another (gradual phase out). It leads to corruption on all sides from the employees - spiking, to CALPERS - taking risks and paying managers lavishly, to politicians - taking contributions from unions and investment companies and putting off the day of reckoning when they are termed out.
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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by cohenfive
    4. leave the 2/3 budget passage requirement alone...it's the only thing keeping california from having 20% income tax rates!
    Imagine the shoe was on the other foot...republicans contolled the legislature with a 65% majority and had to fill a $23 billion gap. Democrats just sat there and said they'd accept absolutely no cuts in spending...not one dollar. "We will never accept any cuts." Republicans kept offering increased taxes to try to sway the democrats to compromise but they wouldn't budge. Finally the republicans had no choice but to fill the hole with tax increases and accounting gimmicks and there was barely anything cut.

    The 2/3 rule is totally unjust. It gives the minority party alot more power then the majority party.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by fourarm
    They lost 25% only after posting years of double digit returns by taking risks they shouldn't have.

    Yes, it is the pensions, the whole concept of DB pensions is an anachronism that will be retired one way(bankruptcy) or another (gradual phase out). It leads to corruption on all sides from the employees - spiking, to CALPERS - taking risks and paying managers lavishly, to politicians - taking contributions from unions and investment companies and putting off the day of reckoning when they are termed out.
    From what I understand, 401ks and the like were never intended to replace DB pensions, but to supplement them. It doesn't seem fair to blame employees for excessive risk taking by pension managers.

  20. #20
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    usually an institution offers one type of pension or the other--either defined benefit or defined contribution. the db plans are going the way of dinosaurs because the economics are horrible for the company or governmental body that offered them. think gm, chrysler and the airlines. most private sector pensions are now defined contribution plans where the company and/or the employees put in money and direct investments across different choices.

    no easy answers here--db plans are killing companies and governmental bodies because the guaranteed benefits don't mesh well with a bear market, and dc plans have hurt people who have directed investments into stocks and have seen their retirement assets eroded away.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by dave54
    Idiots!!

    All they did was kick the can down the road for another year. By deferring expenses and accelerating tax collections they just guaranteed the same problem next year, only it will be a bigger mess to clean up. It seems being a vertebrate is not a requirement for the state legislature.
    We don't have a budget yet......they have to vote on it Thursday. It will be less then a year, I'm thinking late October early November then we will be in the same spot. Remember we had a budget in February but it didn't cover all the expenses. Then they slapped us with a 12 billion dollar increase in taxes (sales tax, income tax, and DMV fee increase).

    I'm happy with the no new taxes but where is the $$$$$$$ coming from the fill the 14 billion dollar gap? They need to do what all business do in hard times.....reduce the state work force. My company pulled the dozen or so open positions and is not hiring...all in the name of staying afloat. I'm not sure the clowns in Sacramento get that.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by cohenfive
    usually an institution offers one type of pension or the other--either defined benefit or defined contribution. the db plans are going the way of dinosaurs because the economics are horrible for the company or governmental body that offered them. think gm, chrysler and the airlines. most private sector pensions are now defined contribution plans where the company and/or the employees put in money and direct investments across different choices.

    no easy answers here--db plans are killing companies and governmental bodies because the guaranteed benefits don't mesh well with a bear market, and dc plans have hurt people who have directed investments into stocks and have seen their retirement assets eroded away.
    Agreed, we should stop/freeze pension benefits. It's clearly not sustainable. Look at retired cops in San Jose making more while retired than what they made when they were working. Stick everybody in 401k type plans, and we won't be stuck with ever increasing pension liabilities.
    Faster is not always better, but it's always more fun

  23. #23
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    I'm 33 and have had 4 different jobs in the past 5 years. The field that I have a degree in is crumbling. What's a pension? Never heard of it.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by cohenfive
    you are spot on...26 billion in deficit vs 15 billion in cuts...the rest is accounting stuff that leaves the state with a 10 billion deficit next year already. they have done this every year they have had a budget problem. the solutions are easy in theory but hard in political reality....

    1. fix prop 13 to eliminate the loopholes..would raise billions a year without elimination of the 1% cap. but yes some corps and people who have been in their homes a while will have to pay their fair share of prop taxes. use the added money for schools and lowering of other taxes.
    2. lower top tax brackets and raise lower brackets, or just raise lower brackets. no chance in heck, but the state needs to get away from relying so heavily on the top bracket. it's the single thing that's killing the state the most.
    3. fix the proposition process so that the budget can't get crushed by props that really should come out of the legislative process, including anything that changes the tax structure.
    4. leave the 2/3 budget passage requirement alone...it's the only thing keeping california from having 20% income tax rates!
    RE #1,
    You have to see that Corp DO NOT pay taxes. It is part of the wholesale price of the products they produce. So, then the distributor and retailer have their taxes too and that is added to the retail price as a normal business expense (that you dont see). Guess who actually pays the Corp taxes, Yep YOU, the consumer..........

    Not enough people know this and think raising business taxes wont affect them. Things happen when you tax a Corp/business, they raise their prices, cut people (hopefully it isnt your job), or move the company out of state.

    I have been around Corp and small business for a number of yrs and taxes are always a part of product costing that the consumer eventually pays.

    So, be careful what you wish for. It may cost you
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  25. #25
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    So what else is new? (They kick the can down the road every year in CA.). The best solution is mentioned elsewhere in this thread with respect to fixing the mess Prop. 13 created. Also, I agree on on keeping the 2/3 requirement. Hopefully, not too many parks, if any, get closed. -gt2005

    [
    quote=dave54]Idiots!!

    All they did was kick the can down the road for another year. By deferring expenses and accelerating tax collections they just guaranteed the same problem next year, only it will be a bigger mess to clean up. It seems being a vertebrate is not a requirement for the state legislature.

    2 more years and I retire with a PERS pension. Then I am moving outta here and away from this dysfunctional cabal of fiscal morons.[/quote]

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