Thursday, August 30, 2012
Gov. Jerry Brown caves on meaningful pension reform, but will it hurt the chances of the tax-the-rich Proposition 30 in the November election?
nstead, the "reform" package put forth fails to address escalating medical care costs (thousands of state workers have free medical care for life) and also fails to implement a more hybrid retirement plan including a reduced pension and a 401(k) type savings plan. So will voters approve additional taxes without meaningful pension reform and while the state barrels ahead with an unfunded high speed rail project? Assemblywoman Shannon Grove was among those who attacked the governor's plan, calling it a "watered down" version of his original, 12-point pension reform proposal. "The fact that it took two years for this meaningless ‘pension reform’ to be addressed gives further proof to my goal of changing this place to a part-time legislature, because absolutely nothing of real is accomplished by our current batch of ‘professional, full time’ politicians. They will adjourn Friday night and go home for two months to campaign, telling the taxpayers to vote for their Prop 30 to raise taxes and give the Legislature even more money to spend!” (photo courtesy of the Los Angeles Times)
* ... MAYA: Meanwhile, I was at the Maya Cinemas the other day and noticed the Kern Citizens for Sustainable Government has extended its pension awareness campaign to the theater screen. The organization is sponsoring an effective ad that poses the question: is it right to cut the number of days our children are in school to pay for unsustainable teacher pensions?
* ... COVENANT: An event to raise money for Covenant Community Services, the non profit that helps foster kids get on their feed, will be held at Imbibe Wine and Spirits on Thursday, October 18. I mistakenly reported it would be held at Covenant's North Chester office but instead will be held at Imbibe from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The cost is $25. Hats off to Imbibe owners David and Tami Dobbs who do so much for many needy organizations in town.
* ... IRISH: The college football season kicks off this weekend and the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame and their fans will be flying to Dublin, Ireland, to face Navy. And among the estimated 30,000 fans heading to Ireland are two local kids, both of them graduates of Garces Memorial High School. Brandon West is a junior at the university and Julia Berchtold is a senior. Brandon is a stunter on the Notre Dame cheer squad (he is one of the kids who hurls cheerleaders into the air) and Julia is with the band. I am always impressed with the number of local kids who head off to Notre Dame and yes, there is even a Bakersfield Notre Dame Club to cheer them on.
* ... BAD FORM: Over in Laurelglen, Lynne Budy has some advice for those who walk their dogs in the quiet neighborhood: please keep your dogs off the lawn. "I have spotted and caught one of the dog walkers in my neighborhood allowing his two female standard boxers defecate in my newly landscaped front yard. This has been going on since earlier this year. As I ran out of the opened front door and down the front walk, the man looked up, grinned at me, and responded, 'You have nice new grass.' I was so stunned, that I said nothing, but I did walk to the area next to the sidewalk to verify what I witnessed."