Effort to Block Costly Tax Hikes in CA Faces Deadline for Signatures

Effort to Block Costly Tax Hikes in CA Faces Deadline for Signatures

Reform California is asking for volunteers to collect signatures on petitions to qualify two ballot initiatives to oppose costly tax hikes in California; effort needs 1 million signatures before April deadline.

Californians are being forced to pay the highest taxes in the country, but two proposed ballot initiatives would give the state’s taxpayers much-needed relief as well as protect them from future tax hikes. The only problem? The proposed ballot measures each need nearly 1 million signatures to appear on the November 2022 statewide ballot.

That’s why Reform California is asking for volunteers to help collect signatures. Volunteers can sign up to have petition booklets mailed to them and can attend a series of “signature storms” that Reform California is organizing in the coming weeks.

“We must fight back against the liberal tax-and-spend super-majority in Sacramento and demand tax relief for our struggling families,” said Carl DeMaio, Chairman of Reform California in announcing the signature drive to help qualify the two tax reform measures. 

“It is clear that California’s liberal politicians won’t stop coming after our wallets, so we need to impose restrictions on them using the citizens’ initiative process at the ballot box — and 2022 offers us the best possible environment to win,” DeMaio noted.

The first measure is called the “Taxpayer Protection and Government Accountability Act” and it would close loopholes politicians have exploited in recent years to impose tax hikes. The measure would strengthen the requirement that local tax hikes must receive two-thirds voter approval to go into effect. In addition, the measure would combat false and misleading ballot titles currently used by state and local politicians to deceive voters into voting for ballot items that contain hidden tax hikes.
The second measure is called the “Repeal the Death Tax Act” and it would preserve Prop 13 and allow parents and grandparents to transfer property to their children and grandchildren without triggering a huge property tax increase.

Reform California Files Ethics Complaint Against Lorena Gonzalez & Demands Her Immediate Resignation

Reform California Files Ethics Complaint Against Lorena Gonzalez & Demands Her Immediate Resignation

Politico Revealed “Employment Negotiations” Between Gonzalez and a Powerful Special Interest Group that Violate the California Political Reform Act

Reform California today announced it has filed an ethics complaint with the California Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) demanding an immediate investigation and enforcement actions be taken against Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez after a Politico story late Tuesday night confirmed “employment negotiations” have been occurring between Gonzalez and the powerful California Labor Federation.

Gonzalez quickly took to Twitter after the story broke to claim she has not yet accepted the job – but provisions in the California Political Reform Act (CPRA) make that immaterial to whether she has run afoul of state ethics laws.

In fact, a state official who simply negotiates employment with a potential employer is covered under the law. Under subdivision (c) of Regulation 18747 of the CPRA, “a public official is ‘negotiating’ employment when he or she interviews or discusses an offer of employment with an employer or his or her agent.”

Once it is established that a state official has engaged in conduct that triggers subdivision (c), Section 87407 of the CPRA applies: “No public official, shall make, participate in making, or use his or her official position to influence, any governmental decision directly relating to any person with whom he or she is negotiating, or has any arrangement concerning, prospective employment.”

Gonzalez has been the staunchest advocate for the California Labor Federation in the Assembly and is on record sponsoring and voting for their legislation and utilizing her office to influence state agency activities.

“While she should have been serving only the interest of her constituents, Lorena Gonzalez has broken all ethical norms by negotiating a sweetheart employment opportunity with a powerful special interest group while doing their bidding in the Assembly,” notes Carl DeMaio, Chairman of Reform California.

“Not only do we demand an immediate ethics investigation into this matter, but it is clear that Lorena Gonzalez must resign to remove any suggestion that she is using her elected office to benefit a special interest group that she has been engaged in employment negotiations with,” DeMaio says.

DeMaio said any investigation by the FPPC should include review of texts, cell calls, and emails for at least the last seven months as well as sworn testimony from board members to the California Labor Federation. DeMaio said the seven month timeframe is key because Gonzalez was rejected by Gov. Gain Newsom for appointment to the Secretary of State position in March of this year – thus prompting the Assemblymember to look for outside employment opportunities.

“Gonzalez will try to play the public for fools by claiming she had absolutely no conversations with the California Labor Federation – but the FPPC needs to put her and others under oath to get to the truth,” DeMaio concludes.

POLITICO: California Labor Fed votes to endorse Lorena Gonzalez as its next leader

https://www.politico.com/states/california/whiteboard/2021/11/23/california-labor-fed-votes-to-make-lorena-gonzalez-next-leader-1395171

San Diego County Proposes Building a “Tent City” for Illegal Immigrants

San Diego County Proposes Building a “Tent City” for Illegal Immigrants

Proposal comes just one day after county creates a $5 million fund to provide free lawyers to illegal immigrants to fight deportation

Carl DeMaio, former San Diego City Councilman and Chairman of Reform California, is sounding the alarm and bringing public attention to a solicitation issued on Wednesday May 5 by the County of San Diego asking local land owners to offer unused agriculture land for the site of a proposed “Tent City” for illegal immigrants – see solicitation email below.

DeMaio is blasting the Tent City proposal – and is urging the Democratically-controlled County Board to immediately suspend work on the idea.

“This proposal is outrageous and should be immediately rejected by the County Board of Supervisors,” said DeMaio.

“First they seize the San Diego Convention Center to house illegal immigrants and now they are proposing the creation of a Tent City to house illegal immigrants,” DeMaio lamented. “County residents should be alarmed about the negative consequences of siting a ‘Tent City’ filled with illegal immigrants that will undoubtedly result in a wide range of negative impacts to public safety, public health, and the environment,” DeMaio warned.

The Tent City proposal comes a day after the San Diego County Board voted to create a $5 million “legal defense fund” using taxpayer money to provide a free lawyer to illegal immigrants who are fighting deportation. “US citizens aren’t given a free lawyer when they face a civil case from the IRS or the Labor Department – they are expected to pay their own legal costs – but here we have illegal immigrants getting preferential treatment once again,” notes DeMaio.

If the Tent City proposal is pursued, DeMaio anticipates a lawsuit will be filed.  DeMaio is also raising concerns that the proposed Tent City would circumvent the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). “The County is proposing a major change in land use from Agricultural to Residential which raises all kinds of legal problems and detrimental impacts to the community,” warns DeMaio.

DeMaio Blasts SB 663 as “Voter Intimidation on Steroids”

DeMaio Blasts SB 663 as “Voter Intimidation on Steroids”

As Democrats blast Georgia for a so-called Jim Crow voting law, California Democrats are poised to pass a real Jim Crow law (SB 663) that seeks to intimidate voters who sign petitions on Recalls of politicians and Ballot Measures on issues they disagree with.

  1. “With SB 663, Democrats are embracing the worst form of voter suppression we’ve seen since Jim Crow laws.”

• SB 663 would force every County Elections Officer to publicly release of the names and personal contact information for every voter who signs a petition on a ballot measure or to Recall a state politician.
• SB 663, which just won approval last week in the Senate Elections Committee and is fast-tracked for passage.
• CA Democrats are sponsoring this legislation in direct response to the Recall of Gov. Gavin Newsom.

  1. “By eliminating any rights of voters to privacy and publishing a list of names of voters who support a ballot measure or a Recall, SB 663 is explicitly designed to empower Cancel Culture activists to intimidate, harass, and bully voters.”

• Carl DeMaio, Chairman of Reform California, is one of the leaders in the coalition effort to Recall Gov. Gavin Newsom and is an expert in Recalls and ballot measures in California.
• DeMaio is blasting this new legislation as a blatant attempt to get a “hunting list” of voters to harass and intimidate for signing the Recall against Gavin Newsom and any future Recalls against powerful politicians.
• DeMaio says SB 663 will also destroy the citizens’ initiative rights in California as voters will be reluctant to sign any ballot measure or Recall in the future for fear of retribution.
• “Because Democrats are using the toxic weapon of Cancel Culture, you can bet that their tactics will include harassing you at home, publicly posting your contact information, and even contacting employers,” DeMaio warns.

  1. “Will any so-called ‘woke’ corporation dare to call out Democrats in California by boycotting our state over SB 663? Will the media expose the hypocrisy of Democrats on SB 663? Whether or not they do, we are fighting SB 663 in the legislature – and will file a lawsuit to block it if needed.”

• To stop SB 663, DeMaio and his Reform California organization are leading a grassroots effort to block the law from passing and have promised to support a legal challenge to the law if it passes.
• “We are mobilizing immediately to block this law from taking effect both by opposing it in the legislature but also supporting an immediate legal challenge should it pass,” DeMaio pledges.
• Under current California state law the identities and contact information of voters who sign petitions such as recalls and ballot measures are protected and there is a penalty for violating privacy of these voters. The thinking is voters should have a right to privacy on petitions they sign – just as they have a right to privacy on votes they cast in a voting booth.
• DeMaio warns the law would have far-reaching consequences beyond just the Recall of Gov. Gavin Newsom.
• “I cannot overstate the damage that would be done to individuals – and our democracy as a whole – if we are forced to reveal the identities and personal contact information of voters who signed the Recall. Put simply if this shameful law passes, it will be the biggest voter suppression law this country has seen since the Jim Crow era and we will never be able to Recall another bad politician from office because voters will be too scared of harassment.”

DeMaio, Carlsbad business owners launch recall effort against Schumacher

DeMaio, Carlsbad business owners launch recall effort against Schumacher

CARLSBAD —A well-known Republican radio host and local rabble-rouser launched a recall campaign seeking to remove Carlsbad City Councilwoman Cori Schumacher from office during an April 5 rally in front of a crowd at Pine Avenue Park in Carlsbad.

Carl DeMaio, founder of Reform California, said Carlsbad residents have had enough of Schumacher’s behavior, vicious attacks on residents and “pay-to-play” schemes with her political donors.

“The misbehavior’s got to stop. The grandstanding has to stop,” DeMaio said. “The sort of misbehavior and misdeeds she’s engaged in, it has no place in this community. My hope is (that) other city officials in our region and across the state, take note. We will not tolerate it and you will be removed from office.”

DeMaio said the Democratic city leader attacks residents who disagree with her positions rather than engaging in dialogue or taking their concerns into consideration.

Read the full story here >>

San Diego Mayor and City Council Pursue Illegal Attempt to Impose Tax Hike Rejected by Voters

San Diego Mayor and City Council Pursue Illegal Attempt to Impose Tax Hike Rejected by Voters

Measure C from March 2020 Failed – But Now City Politicians Hungry for Cash Seek to Invalidate the Certified Results of the Election

In light of revelations that San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and the City Council will seek to impose a hotel tax hike rejected by voters in the March 2020 election, the following statement is released from former San Diego City Councilman Carl DeMaio:

“San Diego politicians are seeking to illegally impose a massive tax hike that was rejected by voters. This desperate and dubious move is nothing short of an attempt to invalidate the outcome of the March 2020 election and thwart the will of the voters.

While sold with the window dressing of expanding the Convention Center and funding a number of popular programs, Measure C would actually have imposed a blank-check tax hike that would allow politicians to spend the money any way they pleased. Despite millions spent on this scam measure, voters wisely rejected it at the ballot box in March 2020.

City politicians are now claiming that an unrelated and unresolved legal theory regarding vote thresholds for approving tax hikes sponsored by citizens’ initiatives could somehow allow them to impose the Measure C tax hike despite its clear rejection by voters. This is simply untrue. In fact, city voters were explicitly told on their official ballot materials that Measure C would require a two-thirds vote. Period. No judge will now allow politicians to reverse in practice what voters were told on their ballots.

Make no mistake about it: Reform California and a broad-based coalition of opponents are prepared to oppose this reckless and illegal effort to impose this ‘Zombie Tax’ on San Diegans. Unfortunately, this doomed effort to create the ‘Zombie Tax’ will only end up costing taxpayers millions in legal fees for the negligence of our city politicians on this matter.”

“Where’s Charda?” Controversial School Board Member Being Recalled Now Faces Legal Questions Over Her Residency

“Where’s Charda?” Controversial School Board Member Being Recalled Now Faces Legal Questions Over Her Residency

Court records and multiple voter registrations show La Mesa-Spring Valley School District Board Member Charda Bell-Fontenot may have been ineligible to hold her position for over a year.

San Diego – “Where does she really live and did she commit fraud by serving on a board for which she was no longer eligible to serve?” That is the question many parents and civic leaders in the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District are asking today as evidence is being released that suggest that Board Member Charda Bell-Fontenot may have ineligibly served on the board for over a year. Those questions are expected to be voiced at tonight’s school board meeting.

Three weeks ago Bell-Fontenot attracted national scorn for not only voting against a school reopening plan but dismissing concerned parents and fellow board members as “white supremacists” and “racists” for wanting to reopen schools for their children. Bell-Fontenot’s offensive remarks were condemned by district officials and fellow board members, but she has refused to apologize. Last week parents launched a Recall campaign against her seeking her removal from office.

However, in the process of serving the Recall papers a legal question has now emerged regarding Bell-Fontenot’s residency. Under California law it is illegal for an elected official to serve in a position if they are no longer eligible as a registered voter and actual resident in the district they are supposed to represent.

According to San Diego county voter records, Bell Fontenot has been registered at multiple properties across San Diego County since she first ran for the La Mesa-Spring Valley School Board.

According to two separate legal proceedings filed against her in San Diego Superior Court (one in 2019 and one as recently as February 2021), Bell Fontenot is known to have resided at an address in El Cajon that is completely outside the La Mesa-Spring Valley school district boundaries.

While Charda Bell-Fontentot registered at an address in Spring Valley immediately after her election in November of 2018, she subsequently re-registered at a different address and kept the El Cajon property outside the district as her official mailing address.

Then on March 3, 2021 – after questions regarding her residency and eligibility on the board were raised by parents – Bell Fontenot suddenly re-registered at the Spring Valley address she used back in November 2018. With multiple addresses floating around and a rushed re-registration occurring just days ago, it all begs the question if she was registered in the district before she was elected and during the length of her current term.

Reform California also has a pending Public Records Act request with the school district to determine any additional addresses she has provided and is also investigating whether she has kept a homeowner occupied status on her El Cajon property with governmental taxation entities.

If she is found to have not lived in the district during the entire time of her service on the board, she could face criminal sanction and would have to be removed from the La Mesa-Spring Valley School Board.

“We already knew that Charda Bell-Fontenot needed to be removed from her position for her gross misconduct at board meetings and for opposing school re-openings – and now we have to ask whether she broke the law by serving on this board while not maintaining proper residency in the district,” noted Carl DeMaio, Chairman of Reform California which is supporting the recall.

Reform California is one of the largest grassroots advocacy organizations in California with over 650,000 subscribers and a statewide supporter and volunteer base of over 50,000. More information on school board recalls can be found at www.SchoolBoardRecall.org

Carl DeMaio Blasts San Diego Mayor for Proposing Law Allowing Abusive Pension Payouts at Taxpayers’ Expense

Carl DeMaio Blasts San Diego Mayor for Proposing Law Allowing Abusive Pension Payouts at Taxpayers’ Expense

San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria Proposes Change in City Pension Law to Permit “Quadruple Dipping” at Taxpayers’ Expense

Former San Diego City Councilman Carl DeMaio blasts the practice as “an outrageous abuse of taxpayer funds”

At a time when the city faces a massive budget shortfall and city politicians are seeking to overturn the 2012 voter-approved pension reform measure, San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria has drafted a special law to grant his Chief Operating Officer the ability to “quadruple dip” at taxpayers’ expense. (See attached Civil Service Commission Documents)

Under current city statutes, a government employee who is drawing a taxpayer-funded pension is prohibited from working more than 720 hour per fiscal year as a taxpayer-funded employee. This limitation is meant to prevent the pension abuse known as “double dipping” whereby a city employee is getting a full taxpayer-funded pension while also drawing a full taxpayer-funded salary. The law is also designed to protect the city’s pension fund tax-exempt compliance with Internal Revenue Code regulations.

Mayor Gloria’s legislative proposal, which was submitted yesterday to the City’s Civil Service Commission, would eliminate any limit or cap on the position of Chief Operating Officer for the City. The proposal seems designed to benefit one singular person: Jay Goldstone.

Such a move would allow Goldstone to earn more than half-a-million dollars annually in salary, benefits and pension payouts. As of 2019 the City of San Diego paid its Chief Operating Officer more than $340,000 in salary and compensation.

State government pension disclosure records show that Goldstone is collecting at least three taxpayer-funded pensions currently – in addition to drawing benefits from 401-k plans also funded in part by taxpayer contributions.

“At a time when San Diegans are unemployed due to the pandemic and the city faces a fiscal crisis, it is outrageous that Mayor Todd Gloria would even propose such an offensive change in city laws,” said former City Councilmember Carl DeMaio. DeMaio authored the 2012 Prop B Pension Reform Initiative to stop pension abuses like “double dipping.”

“Jay Goldstone is a very capable individual, but he voluntarily chose to retire multiple times to draw multiple taxpayer-funded pensions,” said DeMaio. “Todd Gloria needs to withdraw the proposal and commit to ending pension abuses rather than making it easier for city workers to draw these kinds of indefensible payouts at taxpayers’ expense,” DeMaio concluded.

Jay Goldstone’s Current Government Pension Payouts

CALPERS: City of Pasadena Pension
$109,793.52/year (as of 2020)

SDCERS: City of San Diego Pension
$53,715.12/year (as of 2019)

San Mateo County Pension
$19,563.48/year (as of 2018)

https://transparentcalifornia.com/pensions/search/?q=jay+goldstone&a=&y=&s=

Carl DeMaio blasts San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and City Council for accepting a MASSIVE PAY HIKE during Covid-19 lockdowns!

Carl DeMaio blasts San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and City Council for accepting a MASSIVE PAY HIKE during Covid-19 lockdowns!

Carl DeMaio is slamming San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and members of the San Diego City Council for accepting massive pay hikes starting December 10, 2020 – hikes in pay that come as these same politicians impose draconian lockdowns on struggling small businesses that are destroying jobs.

In a recent appearance on KUSI TV, DeMaio slammed all of our local politicians for “taking massive pay raises on day one in office, in the middle of an economic downturn and pandemic.” Continuing, “Todd Gloria is going to get a mayoral salary that is double what Kevin Faulconer earned. The salary is going to go from about $100,000 to over $200,000 today alone. And the city councilmember salaries will be increased from $75,000, to over $125,000 each.”

DeMaio said the politicians who accept these increases is “shameful,” explaining, “as small businesses are closing their doors, as working families are unemployed, the idea that our politicians are taking pay raises at the same time? No. They have to lead by example and turn down those pay raises until we get through this rough patch.”

Concluding that none of the newly elected politicians are required to accept these salary increases.