On Friday, October 30, 2009 California Assemblymember Dan Logue held a hearing in San Diego in a bipartisan effort to investigate the enormous job losses in the state for the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce. The goal was economic reform, and it became very clear that those in attendance unanimously felt that government has become the problem. Even the members of the legislature agreed as they listened intently to the concerns of the people.
California has one of the highest unemployment rates in the nation, said Assemblymember Steve Knight, 15% in some areas, 40% in the Central Valley. Over-regulation is killing the state’s economy and putting people into food lines. A September 2009 study by Varshney and Associates found that the direct, indirect, and induced cost to the state from over-regulation is $493 billion.
Attending the meeting from the Legislature were Senator Denise Moreno Ducheny, Assemblymembers Dan Logue, Joel Anderson, Martin Garrick, Diane Harkey, Steve Knight, and City of San Diego Council Member Carl DeMaio. They listened to testimony from 2 Business panels composed of 5 members each and community citizens who have been actively involved in the Tea Party movement.
Vince Mudd, Chair of the Chamber Board of Directors, was the first to testify. He encouraged the legislature to “streamline the permitting process” and “make California more attractive to small business.” Carl DeMaio emphasized that 93% of the businesses in San Diego are small businesses. While Cindy Gompper-Graves of the South County Economic Development Corporation described how the “multiple layers of permits and fees were big rocks in the road to success” as regulations and fees hurt small businesses.
Scott Molloy of the Building Industry Association described how his 4th generation business was in jeopardy and the effects are so catastrophic that his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather were “rolling over in their graves” as the family enterprises are driven out-of-state or out of business. This echoed the same concerns of the farmers in the Central Valley as government mandated droughts are wiping out generations of wealth.
Another 3rd generation machine shop owner, Dale Watkins of Sheffield Platers, Inc. told the Legislative Panel that he had to fill out 3 different forms for 3 different agencies and some type of streamlining was in order. He was followed by Roy Hobbs, representing the San Diego Port Tenants Association, who said the unfriendly regulatory environment has caused chaos in the recreational boating industry.
Assemblymembers Diane Harkey and Dan Logue described how they went to Nevada to interview businesses that left California and asked them what were the specific reasons for their departure. “Regulatory abuse” was the most common response according to Diane. Now with AB 32 and CARB regulations sucking generations of wealth out of California’s small businesses the lawmakers in Nevada, Arizona, and Texas just smile and encourage the progressives in California’s Legislature to just keep doing what they are doing.
Ironically even the Assemblymembers were dismayed at the process as some of them had to leave early so they could fly to Sacramento and check in for a Monday session. Each of them will then fly back to their districts for the weekend. They are not allowed to check in electronically or by some other 21st century method. They were following a regulatory procedure over the legislative process that requires them to unnecessarily spend taxpayer dollars on wasteful, inefficient, time-consuming travel that puts stress on them and their families. They were all very disenchanted with this requirement.
Before leaving Assemblyman Martin Garrick noted “we aren’t going to get out of this by taxing and spending.” He recommended that bills and projects should be allowed to conduct Economic Impact Studies to go along with any Environmental Impact Studies. A very good idea considering no one even thought of doing an Economic Impact Study on AB 32.
Michael McLaughlin of the California Restaurant Association expressed concerns about water, unnecessary meal and rest breaks, and the ways he was able to self insure his business to achieve substantial reductions in worker’s comp costs. He was followed by John Kabateck of the National Federation of Independent Businesses and Ann Kinner, a professional mariner and owner of Seabreeze Books and Charts, who shared their concerns about the anti-business policies that were harming all segments of our economy.
The testimony then wrapped up with Bryan Bloom of Priority Moving, Inc. who asked the Assemblymembers why he was being forced to spend over $1 million to upgrade his fleet of vehicles to comply with CARB regulations, and Mark Winiarz of Metrix, Inc. who described how there was more money in saving energy than in producing renewable energy.
Assemblyman Logue expressed concern that some of the majority in the legislature do not care as they have never owned or operated any type of business. Then he recognized Tea Party Patriots Larry Naritelli and Charles Fettinger.
Larry pointed out that the economic damage is being caused when the legislature makes laws that are based on the Global Warming Fraud and Climate Change Hoax. “If you base laws on frauds and hoaxes you will create great damage to our economy that will wipe out generations of wealth across the state. They better care about what they are doing, because the people are not going to allow them to get away with destroying our jobs and taking away our freedoms.”
Larry also warned about the economic dangers of alternative energy that costs 20 times more than fossil fuels. “Solar energy just adds high cost, inefficient energy to the grid. It causes electric rates to skyrocket by limiting supplies of electricity.”
Senator Ducheny pointed out that San Diego just received hundreds of millions of stimulus funds for solar projects. These systems produce miniscule amounts of energy compared to the same investment in more reliable sources of electricity production and saddle the taxpayers with mountains of debt.
Charles then encouraged the legislators to bring liberals and conservatives together to stop the progressives who are working against the interests of our economy. It was a clear indication that there is a bipartisan approach that appeals to both liberals and conservatives. It is being opposed by progressives who are working for foreign interests.
Assemblymember Harkey agreed and assured Larry and Charles that the message of the Tea Parties was being heard by all members of the legislature. They do not want to be known as the ones who destroyed the California economy.
While it may be too late for that, it is not too late to stop the destruction and rebuild our economy. AB 32 must be repealed and the California Air Resources Board must be investigated. Any and all laws based on Climate Change are damaging our people and our freedoms. Those responsible for the Global Warming Fraud must be held accountable for the damage they have caused.
Environmental organizations who use false science and foreign propaganda to justify regulations that drive our businesses out-of-state or overseas need to be put under the microscope. They are not friendly to the environment when they turn our farmland into desert, or mandate inefficient sources of energy.
By the end of the meeting it was clear that there are those in our government who are working for the people, but they are frustrated by those in government who are working against the people. It is time for us to clearly identify those who are enemies of the people.
We cannot be complacent anymore. All were in agreement on this. “The state doesn’t create wealth, people do!” exclaimed Dan Logue.
California must become business friendly and soon, as the drain on personal wealth is occurring at a rapid rate. There can no longer be any delays. The quickest way to create jobs is to restore the water supplies to the farmers. Follow that up with a repeal of AB 32 (Cap and Trade), and reduce tax rates across the board. Encourage the use of efficient fuel sources like diesel, and increase our access to offshore oil supplies.
By producing electricity with low cost fossil fuels we can increase the supply and lower the cost of everyone’s electric bill. Turning on the pumps that fill the reservoirs when it rains will stabilize and increase our water supplies, lowering the cost for all. These pro-growth strategies do not need trillions of dollars of stimulus money. They just need common sense and the political will to stand up to the eco-tyranny policies of totalitarian progressives.
We can balance the budget and solve all of our economic woes here and now by rejecting the nonsense of socialist government controls masquerading as environmental extremism. Free markets create wealth and a clean environment. Big bureaucracy bankrupts business.
Assemblymember Joel Anderson summed it up. “It is time to get California working again.” All of the legislators left with a renewed vigor to carry the message of the people back to Sacramento with them.