Government Spending Limit Act of 2012 Filed for November Ballot

SACRAMENTO – A Constitutional Amendment to update and strengthen California’s 1979 Gann Spending Limit was filed with the Attorney General today (December 6). Sponsors include the California Taxpayers Association, the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association and the Small Business Action Committee. The groups intend to qualify the measure, titled the “Government Spending Limit Act of 2012,” for the November, 2012 general election ballot.

Provisions in the measure would limit annual state appropriations to the prior year’s level adjusted for growth in the state’s personal income, require surplus revenue to first be spent on debt service and strengthen the two-thirds vote requirement for legislative enactment of laws that authorize or raise new or higher taxes. “This sound and sensible proposal will force government to live within its means, balance the budget, pay down debt and control spending,” commented Teresa Casazza, President of CalTax. “It is time voters demand fiscal discipline by passing this measure, which calls for excess revenue above the limit to first be used to pay down state debt.”

“Just in the past several weeks, ballot measures have been filed or proposed that would raise taxes by $40 billion or even $50 billion per year,” noted Jon Coupal, President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. “The politicians haven’t enacted real pension reform. They haven’t streamlined government or prioritized spending programs. Instead of cutting waste, corruption and inefficiencies, they threaten cuts to programs like schools and law enforcement unless we raise taxes. This measure will allow voters to make a clear choice between higher taxes or responsible limits on government spending.”

“In the ten years between 2000 and 2010, state spending increased by over $39 billion. Voters demand spending controls but the Legislature and special interests remove spending limits from the ballot and push for tax increases. Higher taxes damage small business, kill jobs and harm California families,” concluded Joel Fox, President of the Small Business Action Committee. “Now is the time to pass this reasonable spending limit, force the politicians to prioritize programs, say ‘no’ to the special interests and clean up government waste before they ask us to pay more of our hard-earned dollars in new and higher taxes.”

To qualify the initiative for the November, 2012 ballot, proponents of the measure are required to submit 807,605 valid signatures. The deadline for qualifying is June 28, 2012.

For More Information, contact CalTax: Jennifer Dudikoff / 916-521-4404; Jennifer Kerns / 916-420-2888

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