Watered-Down SB 350 Still Threatens California

Diane HarkeyBoard of Equalization Member Diane Harkey Leave a Comment

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 …

San Diego Community College Students Lose Job Opportunities; Southwestern College governing board vote bars non-union students

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalPress Releases / Media Advisories 13 Comments

CONTACT: Scott Crosby, CEO, ABC San Diego / 619-518-3450 (Poway, California) – Hundreds of San Diego Community College students will be prohibited from working on Southwestern College (SWC) Prop R funded construction projects under a proposed Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) to be voted on Wednesday by the SWC Governing Board. The students will be barred from applying for these construction …

Understanding Employers and Why Republicans Matter

Diane HarkeyBoard of Equalization Member Diane Harkey Leave a Comment

This op-ed originally appeared in Steve Frank’s California Political News & Views Common sense dictates that people as well as employers will act in their own best interest.  This is the premise underlying market economies and why they provide more goods, services and improve the lives of all of us, much more so than a command or government manipulated market can.  …

Pension Reform Panel

Carl DeMaioCarl DeMaio Leave a Comment

SDCTA Breakfast Panel: The Future of Pension Reform: What’s Next? Date: Thursday, March 14, 2013 Time: 7:00 AM – 9:00 AM Organizer: San Diego County Taxpayers Association Sponsor: REFORM San Diego Panelists Include: Carl DeMaio – Founder and Chairman of Reform San Diego Hon. Jan Goldsmith – San Diego City Attorney Tim Davis – Partner at Burke, Williams & Sorensen, …

New Laws In California and Our First Rostra Prediction Game of 2013

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal 1 Comment

It’s a time-honored New Year’s tradition to review all the new laws taking effect starting on January 1. So I thought I’d get a look at new laws affected Rostrafarians in California. I nearly choked on my breakfast when I looked at the number. There are 837 new laws taking effect as of today. Seriously? Our state was so far …

Top Twenty Worst Bills Worthy of the Governor’s Veto

Diane HarkeyBoard of Equalization Member Diane Harkey Leave a Comment

This op-ed, co-authored with Senator Bob Dutton, originally appeared in the Flashreport As of today, the Governor has yet to act on any of these bills. When he is done, we will grade Governor Brown on his performance. The Governor’s “letter grade” will be computed using the following scale… If he vetoes 90% or more, the Governor got an “A”, 80% – …

Poll: 70% of San Diegans Oppose Chargers Stadium Subsidy

Vince VasquezVince Vasquez 1 Comment

According to a new Survey USA poll, San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders’s proposed public subsidy for a new Chargers stadium is a tough sell to the public. In the October 13th poll that surveyed 500 adults in the City of San Diego, 70% of respondents opposed an annual $38 million taxpayer subsidy to fund a new football stadium for 30 …

Fair and Open Competition Initiative Qualifies for the City of San Diego 2012 Ballot

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal 20 Comments

Backers of an initiative that would prohibit project labor agreements (PLAs) on City of San Diego construction projects were notified by San Diego City Clerk Elizabeth Maland that the signatures submitted are sufficient to qualify the measure for the next citywide ballot. (The required minimum was 62,057). So it seems voters in the City of San Diego will have the …

Report: PLAs Increase CA School Construction Costs 13%-15%

Vince VasquezUndesignated, Vince Vasquez 8 Comments

New Groundbreaking Study Reveals “Project Labor Agreements” (PLAs) Increase School Construction Costs by 13 to 15 Percent in California School projects built under these contracts cost $28.90 to $32.49 more per square foot JULY 26, 2011 SAN DIEGO – California school construction projects built under contracts that contain provisions known as Project Labor Agreements (PLAs) cost 13 to 15 percent …

San Diego Public Library Laptops Lifted

Bradley J. FikesBradley J. Fikes Leave a Comment

Another illuminating story from the San Diego Union-Tribune’s Watchdog group: 10 out of 25 laptop computers available for use inside the San Diego Public Library have been stolen. The laptops aren’t labeled with a magnetic security sticker, because the library thinks the stickers might damage the computers, according to the article. But the Watchdog reporter ran that claim past a …

Attention, Class: This WILL Be On The Test Monday

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal 2 Comments

Rostra columnist Jim Sills posted a question on my recent post “Calling San Diego Taxpayers: Oppose the “Jobs Tax” asking San Diegans to oppose a proposal by the San Diego City Council to double linkage fees. Sills had the courage (and the smarts) to ask an obvious question. What the heck is a “linkage fee”? I called on Chris Cate, …

Labor Council’s “Middle Class Taxpayer Association”

Steve RiderSteve Rider Leave a Comment

If ever a group assembled under a more inaccurate name, I’d be interested to see it. The “Middle Class Taxpayers Association” isn’t a new voice for responsible stewardship of our tax dollars. It’s a front group shilling for the San Diego Labor Council. The Labor Council doesn’t even try to hide its involvement. It seems silly to use this name, but I suppose there are people or news media who might confuse it with a real taxpayers advocacy group.

In San Diego: Employees vote; taxpayers don’t

Tony ManolatosTony Manolatos 2 Comments

Starting today, an important election involving city finances is taking place in San Diego, but taxpayers won’t be casting the votes. Nope, this election rests with city employees, who have a week to vote on whether to eliminate a controversial and costly employee benefit – the Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP).  Yes, in San Diego, employees have the final say …

Welcome The New Poliwonk in Town

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal 1 Comment

A fresh face among San Diego’s political wonks is always a welcome sight. So it’s a pleasure to post word that Peter Amaro has been named the new Policy Analyst at the San Diego County Taxpayers Association. Amaro’s brief bio: A native San Diegan (hooray!), Amaro received his Juris Doctor from the Georgetown University Law Center.  During his time at …

Christmas Comes Early for Poliwonks Courtesy of SDCTA

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal Leave a Comment

If you’re the sort who enjoys spending an evening or even an off-the-rails three day weekend pouring through reams of data secured through the Public Records Act to hold public agencies, their staff members and appointed and elected officials accountable (admit it, you’re reading Rostra aren’t you?), Christmas has come early for you thanks to the San Diego County Taxpayers …

If We Hurry, There’s Still Time to Screw Over The Voters

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal 3 Comments

Thanks to some vigilent citizen watchdogs spreading the word, we learned that Oceanside Mayor Jim Wood called a special meeting of the Oceanside City Council today at 4 p.m. The meeting just barely met the minimum public notice required. Ask yourself dear Rostra reader why the council would be in such a big hurry to have an unscheduled meeting on …

TONIGHT: Post-Election Analysis with Consultant Hoy, Pollster Nienstedt

Erica HollowayErica Holloway 1 Comment

I’m not exactly the most devoted GOP meeting attendee. But I’ll be there tonight to hear the recap of the wildly dead-on pollster John Nienstedt and Nov. 2 success-story consultant John Hoy. I had the honor of working with both men on Proposition A – which crossed the finish line easily with more than 70 percent of the vote. Conversely …

HJTA: Harkey, Hollingsworth are San Diego’s Top Taxpayer Advocates for 2010

Vince VasquezVince Vasquez 5 Comments

How taxpayer-friendly is your local representative in Sacramento? The results are in from the 2010 Legislative Report Card issued by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association (HJTA), one of California’s oldest and most respected taxpayer advocacy organizations, and San Diego Assemblymember Diane Harkey and Senator Dennis Hollingsworth received the highest “A” grades (94.7% and 96.9%, respectively) within the San Diego delegation! The Report Card, …

Yes on A Gets Local, National Attention

Erica HollowayErica Holloway Leave a Comment

Not too often that you see a local proposition garner national media attention, but that’s just what the Yes on A camp snagged last week following a feisty debate on KPBS’s “These Days.”

Art, Schmart

The Libertarian Lass, Gayle FalkenthalThe Libertarian Lass, Gayle Falkenthal

A robust public discussion (my favorite kind!) is taking place over the issue of public arts funding. Reporter Lynn Stewart of San Diego 6 aired a story last week pointing out that the City of San Diego had budgeted $300,000 for art at two fire stations, while at the same time fire stations were being shuttered in rolling “brownouts” to …