California Budget Crisis

No Spending cuts v No Tax Cuts

Introduction and Key Issue
This paper focuses on the issue of how to tax implement reform within the next two terms available to Governor Brown.

The important issue I address is how the restrictions imposed on the legislature to increase taxes has restricted the Legislature’s ability to manage the budget.

Political divide
There is a fundamental divide between the taxation and political views of the two key parties California.   The Republican Party follows the Market Liberalist view of the Government (Simmons B, et al, 2006, p 782).   Under this view, Government should be limited to defining private property rights and contracts, national defense, basic infrastructure (as little as possible) and protecting those unable to protect their own interests etc, (Dryzek J 2009).

The Democratic Party on the other hand resists the market liberal view. The State has a role to provide service to the community in its own right. They are willing to use taxes to provide government services for the perceived good of the community, regulate the private market.

Table 1:   Democrats and Republican policy
|Democrats (CDP, 2010)                                         |Republican (CRP, 2008)                                         |
|Taxes – no statement (but willing to increase)                 |Taxes are too high                                             |
|Support majority vote for tax increases and budget             |Government spending is too high                               |
|Change Proposition 13 to require business to pay taxes on     |Support 2/3 majority requirement for tax increases and budget |
|property                                                       |Against unfunded state mandates                               |
|Support social policies such as Research and Development,     |Ban bonded debt to cover operating deficits                   |
|small business loans, expand parks                             |Increase...