The hidden costs driving California gas prices up

Diane Harkey Board of Equalization Member Diane Harkey

This op-ed originally appeared in The Orange County Register and can be viewed here. Gasoline prices around the country have dropped dramatically so far this year, as the price of oil has slumped. Gas prices in California, however, remain much higher than the national average. At the February meeting of the State Board of Equalization, I voted with the majority to …

Getting Into the Weeds Part IV: Pot Legalization Could Create a Banana Republic

Diane Harkey Board of Equalization Member Diane Harkey

This op-ed originally appeared in The Press Enterprise and can be viewed here. As we enter 2016, our new industry and cash crop, marijuana, is the buzz in Sacramento. Over 30 new pieces of pro-marijuana legislation will be introduced this year, with little outside-the-beltway scrutiny. Big players are waiting in the wings to seize the marketplace with recreational use ballot initiatives. …

The Sacramento Strategy to Undo Proposition 13

Diane Harkey Board of Equalization Member Diane Harkey, Undesignated

This op-ed originally appeared in the Flashreport Serving in the Legislature for six years, I had a front row seat to the culture in Sacramento where operatives strategize and execute plans to continuously raise your taxes to fund an ever expanding state government. For the first time in years, our state budget is running a surplus, and yet the demand …

Watered-Down SB 350 Still Threatens California

Diane Harkey Board of Equalization Member Diane Harkey

This op-ed originally appeared in the Riverside Press-Enterprise Once in a while, even in the California state Legislature, we witness democracy in action or a rare moment when a well-intentioned, but harmful, strongly supported and lobbied bill, is rejected due to a lack of votes. In the final days of the Legislature’s 2014-2015 session, the right number of elected officials listened …