Monday, February 16, 2009

There are times I'm glad I don't live in California

I always thought that the way the state's budget was voted on was very dysfunctional under the best of times. Budgets rarely get passed before the fiscal deadline, and God help anyone who proposes even a minimal tax increase. When times are hard, the proceeding get downright surreal. The requirement of a supermajority to pass any sort of tax increase effectively grinds everything down to a halt. Seriously - from what I can gather, the state's government is in some sort of paralysis. In the meantime, while California burns (figuratively) the last of the anti-tax brigade fiddle.

All I can say is good luck to anyone there who is a state employee or requires any of that state's services. While you're surviving the impotence of legislators and the governor, this would be a really good time to demand some major reforms to the legislative process with a particular eye to overhauling the budget process. If the legislature and governor won't take the initiative (don't count on that happening), perhaps a ballot initiative is in order (although ironically enough, that particular relic from the old Progressive era is badly dysfunctional as well).

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