Local Assemblyman Brian Jones (R-Santee) focused on high tax rates and spending in the state when he released counterpoints to California Governor Jerry Brown's State of the State address to the legislature Wednesday morning.
Brown highlighted California's comeback, attempts to battle climate change, and promised to create a "rainy day fund" to help maintain the state's fiscal stability. Jones in turn rebutted these points.
"The Governor preached about a stimulated economy and surpluses, but forgot to mention our already high tax rates, our terrible ranking in education, and only briefly covered our ongoing list of liabilities," Jones said.
Jones said that growing the economy and encouraging the creation of private sector jobs in California continues to be his top policy priority in 2014. He noted that despite the proclaimed economic recovery, California has dropped from the 6th largest economy in the world to 9th.
Here are some of the Governor's highlights from the speech, countered with Jones' response (in italics):
"As you know, of all the states, and even of most of the countries of the world, California is the leader in dealing with climate change. From AB 32, to our building and appliance efficiency standards, our renewable portfolio standard and our support of electric vehicles, California is leading the way. Nevertheless, in terms of greenhouse gases, our biggest challenge remains the amount of gasoline Californians use... We’re on our way to a million electric vehicles and we’re building the nation’s only high-speed rail," said Brown.
“From their failed 'green energy' policies to their high-speed rail project, the Democrats continue to fritter away money on projects the state just cannot afford. The people should demand leadership in Sacramento that will create budgets that will let them keep more of what they earn rather than handing it over to big spending politicians,” said Jones.
It's notable that Brown didn't mention Republicans once in his speech, while the comments by Jones rely heavily on pitting the parties against each other.
The Los Angeles Times highlighted the diminished role of California Republicans in their analysis of the speech:
"In 2011, Brown used his speech to plead for bipartisan cooperation to put a tax measure before voters. Since failing to get Republican support, Brown has largely jettisoned GOP lawmakers, working with new Democratic super majorities in both houses to push his agenda."
“I’m surprised at the extended praise Governor Brown gave the Legislature for work accomplished in the past few years,” Jones said. “In spite of continuous attempts by Republicans over the years to pay down our wall of debt and create a rainy day fund, Democrats continued to take money from the people and spend every single dollar, and then some,” said Jones.
"Boom and bust is our lot, and we must follow the ancient advice, recounted in the Book of Genesis, that Joseph gave to the Pharaoh: Put away your surplus during the years of great plenty so you will be ready for the lean years which are sure to follow,'' Brown said.
Also read: Governor Declares Drought Emergency in CA, Calls for Conservation
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