California: Falling Apart At The Seams

In 2006, then California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed AB32, “The California Global Warming Solutions Act” into law. posts:

Successful passage of the law effectively turned the state into one of the most stringent regulators of green house gas emissions in the nation and globally. Some would argue that the move all but eliminated California’s competitive edge in today’s market.

The article continues:

Andrew Chang & Company, which conducted the latest fiscal and economic impact study on behalf of CMTA, found that the average California family will end up paying an additional $2,500 annually by 2020 when AB 32 is fully implemented. In addition, the state is expected to lose an additional 262,000 jobs, 5.6 percent of the gross state product, and a whopping $7.4 billion through decreased annual state and local tax revenues as a result. Figures from the study were based on more conservative estimates, suggesting that expected costs could actually range much higher.

This new information comes at a time when state government is already struggling to maintain funding for some of California’s most basic services, and economic recovery remains anemic- prompting calls for further consideration of the law.

“These policies will create a large but hidden tax on families and will add new burdens to a fragile state economy,” said Jack Stewart, President of the California Manufacturers and Technology Association (CMTA). “This new tax is not what we need while Californians struggle to find jobs, meet mortgage payments and maintain a reasonable quality of life.”

The consequences appear even more severe for California’s small business community.

According to John Kabateck, California Executive Director of the National Federation of Independent Business:

“This comprehensive report tells us that small business will get hit from all sides.  Consumers will have less money to buy our products, employers will be forced to purchase more affordable products outside of California, and our own energy costs will make it nearly impossible to stay in business.”

Meanwhile, before the legislature began its summer recess last Friday, negotiations regarding pension reform broke down. And the state continues it’s obsession with the costly train to nowhere, while France’s SNCF (that operates the French National Railway) gives the current rail plan a scathing review:

“Simply put, the California High-Speed Rail Authority has a wish list, not a plan,” said a presentation from SNCF. “This lack of an investment-grade business plan is a deadly defect, particularly in a project that by law cannot rely on government subsidies for its operation and maintenance.”

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