Senate Bill 33, and other news

Hi Aubrey and All,

1. Senate Bill 33

I finally had a chance to go over the tons of informational material received at the Bay Area Coalition meeting Aubrey and I attended on March 15. There is so much liberty-killing stuff going on, it is frightening. But, I believe nothing reaches the level of barefaced affront than California Senate Bill 33. This bill, as Aubrey will recall, was mentioned at the meeting a the "back up bill should SB1 not make it into law." The text of the bill goes on for miles, but the crucial item in it seems to be that voters are summarily relieved of their burden to approve infrastructure bonds. Well, we may not have to worry about Phil and Aubrey having to face the liberals in the future to discuss these bonds.

Although we are the San Francisco LP and need to focus on City events, I feel that regionalism has obliterated city lines to the extent that most of the legislation that will seriously affect San Franciscans will be those emanating from the California senate and assembly aiming at drastically changing what needs to be voted on, who makes decisions on what, whose property is placed in peril, etc.

An example of what needs to be done to counter this trend might be the Silicon Valley Taxpayers Association's work on acquainting themselves with legislation and working to defeat the really bad proposals. We at LPSF don't have enough activists willing to participate in such tedious work, but maybe we should make an effort to attract some.

Here is a link to the text of the bill. If the link does not work for you, just Google California SB33.

http://legiscan.com/CA/text/SB33/id/883390
Here is the wording regarding the elimination of voter participation:

  This bill would revise and recast the
provisions governing

infrastructure
financing districts. The bill would eliminate the

requirement
of voter approval for creation of the district and for

bond
issuance, and would authorize the legislative body to create the

district
subject to specified procedures. The bill would instead

authorize
a newly created public financing authority, consisting of 5

members,
3 of whom are members of the city council or board of

supervisors
that established the district, and 2 of whom are members

of
the public, to adopt the infrastructure financing plan, subject to

approval
by the legislative body, and issue bonds by majority vote

of
the authority by resolution. The bill would authorize a public

financing
authority to enter into joint powers agreements with

affected
taxing entities with regard to nontaxing authority or powers

only.
  
2. Michael Stogner, Libertarian running for San Mateo Board of Superviso: Maybe we should include in our Elections recommendations Libertarians running in nearby counties. San Mateo LP is planning to work hard on Stogner's campaign.

3. And Kevin, VC of San Mateo LP, is interested in the idea Aubrey tried a few months back to get the LP counties in the Bay Area together to exchange strategy plans, etc. He is thinking of a first meeting somewhere in Alameda at a restaurant with a back room, within walking distance from a BART station. Any one know of a good place to recommend?

Marcy

Hi Marcy! Thanks for bringing these issues up. Especially from our coalition work, I have taken an interest in the state propositions. Until such time that the statists and regionalists have the power to make all the decisions for us, one thing we can do is perhaps put up an argument or two against some of the bad state propositions coming up in November. (This is something the state LP should be doing, but if we wait for them to do it, nothing will be done. I will bring up the issue at the state convention this week-end.) Anyway I did a little research on how the state ballot argument system works for our coalition but didn't get a chance to talk about it at our last meeting. The deadline is much earlier than our SF deadline (was early Feb for the June election and will be July 8 for the November election). As always, the pecking order is the author of the ballot measure (often the legislators) first, then bona fide citizen groups, and
individuals last. No need to do any of our shenanigans of submitting 25-40 arguments, since only one argument is accepted. Here's the kicker--and it's a doozie: in the case of multiple arguments by bona fide citizen groups, forget the lottery--it's "at the discretion of the Secretary of State" to pick which one goes in the Voters Informational Pamphlet. I asked the aide who I spoke to what "at the discretion of" means and she could not elaborate. What a recipe for the abuse of power! (Hark, do I hear Starchild calling?) At any rate, this is an area that we could expand in to, if no else does the work. I read Prop 41 about homelessness and the veterans for the June election, and the argument against it was strange at best, and we could definitely have presented a better case against moving funds from a government program that apparently no one used into more government bureaucracy.

As for Michael Stogner, Libertarians running for office are few and far between, and we should mention him (and any other locals L's running) in our website. I may give a hand in his campaign, if time allows.

While my efforts to pull the local LP chapters together failed last year, I'm happy to work with new and gungho LP activist Kevin from San Mateo to try to make it happen this year.

Thanks!
Aubrey

Hi Aubrey,

Yes, state legislation is now important for us to pay attention to, since proliferating regionalism is beginning to make events at the City level irrelevant. Ballot arguments are definitely a tool to counter the really egregious proposals.

I am also wondering whether the real threat is coming from legislation, as opposed to initiatives. By real threat I mean legislation that implements mechanisms to accomplish a very wide range of events, and the accompanying financing, without any need for voter approval. Senate Bills 1 and 33 are examples of what I mean. If so, we might want to put some effort into bad mouthing the authors of such legislation, as well as the legislation itself.

Marcy