Labor unions this week dumped more than $1 million into a proposed ballot measure that would change the legislative vote requirement to pass a state budget from two-thirds to a simple majority.
The California Federation of Teachers’ Committee on Political Education (COPE) on Wednesday put $700,000 into the “Teachers, Firefighters and Nurses for an On-Time Budget” committee; the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) had kicked in $350,000 a day earlier, and the California Professional Firefighters gave $7,702 on Friday.
The committee is backing the “On-Time Budget Act of 2010,” which reduces the voting threshold to pass a budget while also providing that that if the Legislature fails to pass a budget bill by June 15, all lawmakers will permanently forfeit any pay and expenses for every day until the day the budget is passed. The proponents have until May 10 to gather valid signatures from at least 694,354 registered voters in order to put the proposed constitutional amendment on November’s ballot.
Meanwhile, the California Teachers Association put $580,850 this past week into its “Taxpayers for Jobs and Against Corporate Handouts” committee, which is pushing a ballot measure to repeal several corporate tax loopholes enacted in recent years.
Specifically, it would repeal laws that let businesses shift operating losses to prior tax years and extend the period permitted to shift operating losses to future tax years; that let corporations share tax credits with affiliated corporations; that let multistate businesses used a sales-based income calculation instead of a calculation based on a combination of property, payroll and sales. The Legislative Analyst’s Office says this would raise about $1.7 billion in revenue for the state when fully phased in, starting in 2011-12. The proponents have until May 13 to gather valid signatures from at least 433,971 registered voters in order to put this proposed statute on November’s ballot.