By JOHN KINOSHITA
California is facing a 20 billion dollar deficit. Government spending in our state is at an all-time high and now they want to keep the status quo and not let our voices be heard when it comes to spending our tax dollars on entering into the retail electricity business.
Proposition 16 – the Taxpayers Right to Vote Act would require a two-thirds voter approval before local government can spend or borrow taxpayer dollars to go into the retail electricity business.
Asking for a two-thirds majority requirement stated in Prop 16 is no different from the current voter requirement for special taxes and most infrastructure bonds. Prop 16 does not decide whether public power is a good idea or not – it allows that decision to be made by us; the voters. If local government is going to spend our tax dollars and possibly incur public debt when entering into the risky retail electricity business, then we should have the right to vote on the issue and hear a sound plan.
Currently business leaders and organizations are joining together to make their voices heard. The list of supporters is broad. The California Chamber of Commerce, San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, Asian Business Association of Los Angeles, California Taxpayers’ Association, and Greater Los Angeles African American Chamber of Commerce – just to name a few. On June 8 we can make our voice even stronger and vote YES on Prop 16 together as a community. Let’s put the power back in our hands – the taxpayers.
John Kinoshita is former Special Assistant CA Trade and Commerce Agency. The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of The Rafu Shimpo.