Widening the Budget Gap, Shifting the Burden

The CBP has closely followed the work of the Commission on the 21st Century Economy, aka the tax commission, for some time now. With the Commission expected to meet in Los Angeles September 10 to finalize recommendations, the CBP ‘s executive director, Jean Ross, recently submitted comments to the Commission outlining the CBP’s concerns.

The bottom line: The CBP believes the Commission’s working proposals would limit the growth of state revenues and thus lead to wider state budget gaps in the future. They would also shift a greater share of the cost of financing public services from high-income taxpayers onto the shoulders of low- and middle-income Californians.

Instead, the Commission should consider an oil severance tax (California is, we believe, the only oil-producing jurisdiction in the world without one); repeal the corporate tax breaks included in recent budget agreements; extend the sales tax to some services, while preserving exemptions for necessities like food and child care; and improve the accountability and transparency of the state’s tax code through greater disclosure.

Want to know more? Read the letter here.

— Lisa Gardiner