jon coupal

Another legislative attack on transparency

Just two weeks ago, this column exposed the abject lack of transparency in the state budget process. But the way the Legislature enacts its spending plan is just one of many ways Sacramento

California’s budget process has devolved into a bad joke

Let’s face it. California’s budget process has devolved into a bad joke. The record amount of spending coupled with massive expenditures for wasteful, pork-barrel projects is bad enough. But the more

Healthcare tax for citizens, free healthcare for noncitizens

If there was any question whatsoever as to whether California has gone completely off the rails, proposals in the new state budget should remove all doubt. Perhaps the most egregious of these involve

Senate Constitutional Amendment 5 – Horrible for California Homeowners

Senate Constitutional Amendment 5 (SCA 5), is set for legislative hearing this Tuesday. It deserves a quick defeat. Advanced by Sen. Ben Allen, D-Los Angeles, and Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, SCA 5

Give the FPPC the Power to Fight Illegal Spending

In recent years, taxpayers throughout California have registered numerous complaints about government entities using taxpayer dollars for political advocacy, a practice that is illegal under both

Is California really a low property tax state?

To hear progressives tell it, California’s property tax is way too low and needs to be increased to fund the critical needs of schools and local governments. But the notion that Proposition 13 –

LAUSD’s Punishing Parcel Tax Proposal

America’s most dysfunctional school district has stepped in it again. The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), apparently coming to the shocking realization that there was no way they could

What Recent Pension Ruling Means for California’s Taxpayers

Last week, the California Supreme Court issued a ruling in Cal Fire Local 2881 v. CalPERS, a case involving public employee pensions. For taxpayers, the decision was a mixed bag. On the plus side, the

Legitimate Lawsuit Against Trump? Or Political Posturing?

The big news last week was the lawsuit filed by California and 15 other states challenging President Trump’s declaration of an emergency related to border security and the building of a physical

Don’t Derail the Bullet Train Derailment

Even before California’s High Speed Rail bond proposal appeared on the ballot in November 2008, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association commissioned a study in conjunction with the Reason Foundation

Defending Direct Democracy and Defending Taxpayers

The powers of direct democracy — initiative, referendum and recall — are powerful tools to control slow-moving or corrupt politicians. These powers are enshrined in the California Constitution for

Progressives Now Complaining About Gas Prices

Only in California. Progressive policies in California have forced drivers to pay some of the highest gas prices in the nation. Now, a group of liberal legislators want the California attorney general

Stop Letting Sacramento Fool Us

“Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me,” so the saying goes. Unfortunately, California voters have been fooled (aka lied to) so many times by our political leaders that perhaps they

Gavin Newsom’s Budget Calls for More Spending, Higher Taxes

To the surprise of absolutely no one, California’s new governor has proposed a state budget with billions in increased spending and lots of tax hikes. And, as an added bonus, he is proposing new

What the High-Speed Rail Audit Really Means

Although the midterm election was held on November 6th, the news media was absorbed for several weeks with undecided close races and the strength of the “blue wave,” especially here in California.

HJTA’s 2018 scorecard identifies taxpayer allies, foes

In 2018, perhaps scared off by the specter of an upcoming election and the recall of state Sen. Josh Newman, D-Fullerton, the California Legislature approved no new taxes for only the second time in

California Taxpayers Give Thanks But Worry About the Future

In this season of Thanksgiving, taxpayers in California have reason to pause when asked for what they are thankful. Considering the costly plans of the newly elected Legislature and governor,

Did California save Ted Cruz?

Chuck DeVore is just one of thousands of former Californians who have moved to Texas. But DeVore is unique. Not only did he serve in the California Assembly, but he remains heavily engaged in policy

How to Read Your Property Tax Bill

Thanks to Proposition 13, property tax bills are less scary in California than they are in a lot of other states. Homeowners in Illinois and New Jersey, just to cite two examples, have been known to

Government Boondoggles Threaten CA Property Owners and Taxpayers

One would hope that with the profound foolishness associated with California’s infamous High Speed Rail (HSR) project that our elected leadership would have learned a thing or two. But this is