September 29, 2000
PROPOSITION 37: Mitigation Fees and Texas Re-Defined
This proposition would amend the state condition so that mandatory fees charged by state or local agencies will mitigate industrial health, and environmental impacts are reclassified as taxes, requiring a two-thirds vote of the legislature or local voters.
Oil companies, gas stations, automotive corporations, polluting industries, tobacco companies, and all businesses that cause industrial pollution or that cause health and environmental destruction of our cities, would love to see the current law changed. They cause the problem in the first place to increase their profits; therefore they should pay to clean it up. The taxpayers should not have to pay for their pollution ways.
Prop 37 would increase the threshold for approval by a state or local agency. At the present it requires only a majority vote to impose the fees. Under Prop 37 it would take a two-thirds vote. Thus making it easier for major corporations to use their financial influence to sway elected or appointed officials to shift the cost to the taxpayers. And we have ample evidence how easy that is.
VOTE NO On Prop 37
PROPOSITION 38: School Vouchers
This Initiative would give parents $4,000 a year in state money to send their children to a private or parochial school of their choice. Children currently enrolled in public schools would qualify for the $4,000 vouchers first. Four years later children currently in private schools could receive the money.
The Proposition will also allow the state legislature to replace the current school financing formula (Prop 98 money that set aside 40% of the state's general fund for education) with a system that sets per-pupil spending at NO LESS than the national average.
What PROPOSITION 38 is offering is an opportunity for Mexican Americans, Latinos Hispanics, Blacks, Filipinos, Pacific Islanders, working class whites, and all other economically oppressed communities to escape from a public school system that has systematically denied our children an education comparable to that received by those who are economically and geographically educated in the better schools of that city or county. This is not something that has just recently become a known fact. It has been in place in America's schools since the founding of the public schools.
Our children have been programmed for failure for generations. The generations have been unable to escape the wrenching poverty, the ghettos, barrios and slums. Our children for generations have never been given the education to escape.
This year the majority of our schools are in the lowest percentiles of achievement. They are in the lowest rankings locally, statewide and nationally. Moving from the 2nd percentile to the 3rd, still means that 98 percent of the other students are receiving an education. All our children are receiving is a diploma to poverty, sickness, and despair.
PROP 38 OFFERS THOSE THAT NEED IT THE MOST A CHOICE!
A choice that if you are no longer willing to suffer your children being functional illiterates you will have the CHOICE to send your child to a PRIVATE SCHOOL SYSTEM where they will have a CHANCE to achieve to the utmost of their potential. However, if a parent is happy with their schools they have the CHOICE to leave their children in public schools.
For our children's sake
VOTE YES ON PROP 38!
Proposition 35: Contracting Out Public Works Projects
This proposal would allow state and local governments more latitude in hiring qualified private firms for architectural and engineering services on public works projects. This Proposal applies to all state and local public works, projects, including the state's largest capital improvement effort, the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP). The measure requires a "fair" competitive selection process.
The Statewide Association of Engineers and Land Surveyors of California (CELSOC) put $2,000,000 into qualifying the measure. Opposing this action is the Union representing CALTRANS Engineers.
It is disconcerting that the measure does not specify how the "fair competitive" process would be implemented. Who would set the guidelines? PROP 35 looks like an opening for lawmakers in the Assembly and Senate or local governments to ladle out, to their political supporters & cronies, "pork" contracts without any controls. This looks like another self-serving measure that is destined to end up in litigation in the courts. We have seen how easily the various associations of contractors, developers, engineering firms and the architectures gain sweetheart contracts and manipulate our local politicians. Our local and statewide elected officials are all much to eager to take both soft and hard money from these groups.
VOTE NO ON PROP 35!
Proposition 36: Drug Treatment for Non-Violent Drug Offenders
PROP 36, an Initiative Statue that would require first-time and second-time offenders convicted for non-violent drug possession to receive probation and drug treatment instead of incarceration.
Not receiving probation would be those convicted of a serious or violent felonies in the previous five years or those who refuse drug treatment, those who used a firearm during a crime, and those who have proven unreceptive to treatment in the past. Those eligible will receive drug treatment for a year plus six months of follow-up counseling.
Interestingly, PROP 36 does not list what drugs would be considered in order to become candidates for the users to be considered violent or non-violent users and therefore should be incarcerated. Is Prop 36 more interested in de-criminalizing all drugs? Is a teenager knocked off his rocker on crack more dangerous than one taking a sniff of glue? Who knows what psychological buttons need to have to be pushed before a drug action turns seriously violent?
More to the point, who is going to pay for the thousands of drug tests that are going to have to be given to anyone that looks like he is high on something? PROP 36 does not provide for state funding for drug testing! It does provide state funding until 2006 for drug treatment ($60 million for the first year and $120 million per year there-after until 2006).
There are too many loopholes in PROP 36. The taking of drugs is a dangerous pastime that CANNOT BE TOLERATED IN OUR SOCIETY. The United States ingests more dangerous drugs then any other nation in the world! This is not the time to back off on the punishment for destroying our morale, physical, and psychological fiber of our nation. The effort to eliminate the usage of drugs should continue until it becomes no longer viable to ship in drugs, use drugs, or to condone drug usage in our nation.
VOTE NO ON PROP 36!
PROPOSITION 39: School Bond Initiative
This proposition would change the California Constitution by permitting approval of local school construction bonds with 55 percent of the vote instead of the current 2/3rds-majority vote.
Regardless of the stated reasons for putting this special interest Proposition on the ballot, once the barn door is open it will destroy the protection that taxpayers have. It is the property owners who are required to pay off the bonds. The voters will be facing a barrage of special interest bond measures that will no longer have to have the strong support of the tax payers i.e. two thirds majority in order to be approved. The 2/3rds majority for school bonds, park bonds, water projects, libraries, future bonds for ball parks, airports, etc., will be removed. The homeowners will be crushed with bond indebtedness and financial chaos will arise.
In an age of over taxation that has created enormous cash surpluses in State and Federal coffers, there is no reason to encourage our local and state officials to keep on borrowing money, at exorbitant to run our cities and state. Force our politicians to use the PAY AS you GO plan rather than borrowing or charging for all our needs!
VOTE NO ON PROPOSITION 39