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Feb172020

CA Corruption and Dysfunction

by Lou Binninger

 

The government in California is not only corrupt and incompetent but very expensive at every level.  It is grossly overstaffed and routinely underperforms.

 

            Thousands of employees get overgenerous salaries/retirement for mediocre service. In fact, they don’t work very often when holidays, vacation, family leave, sick days, personal days etc. are deducted. Taxpayers are being ripped-off.

 

            California has the highest marginal income tax rates in the nation at 13.3%. Nearby Nevada, Washington and Texas have no state income tax. Oregon is 9.90%, Arizona 4.50%, Utah 4.95% and Idaho is 6.95%.

 

            DMV fees for some cars are the price of a cheap used car in past years. DMV’s greatest success has been wrongly registering thousands of people from foreign countries to vote Democrat. If you need to go to the DMV office take a novel, lunch and medications.

 

            Sutter County Supervisors thought the best they could do for a County Administrator was a discredited Thousand Oaks City Manager that was unanimously canned there for unethical behavior. He was so richly paid (more than $300,000 annually with all the perks) here that he could afford to commute from Ventura County 400 miles away.

 

He showed-up enough to keep his job until he could find work elsewhere. Sutter County was a cheap trick for him to clean-up his reputation and return to SoCal. That was an expensive date thanks to Sutter County Supervisors getting played.

 

            Yuba County Administrator Robert Bendorf, and his wife Melanie like working in Yuba County, but not enough to live there. They reside in Placer County. If Melanie is elected Yuba County judge then they will be paid nearly a half million tax dollars annually and live in Placer or anywhere but Yuba.

 

Those were the good old days when highly-paid community leaders liked the area enough to dwell there.

The Sacramento Bee reported in June that taxpayers paid more than $21,000 for former Caltrans director Laurie Berman to commute to Sacramento from San Diego for a year. The state paid for Berman’s flights and most of the rent for a Sacramento apartment, along with thousands of dollars more in Lyft rides, rental cars and meals. Berman retired in June.

 

Berman’s successor in her previous San Diego Caltrans post, Ryan Chamberlain, also billed the state for regular Sacramento travel. Chamberlain received about $20,000 for flights to and from the capital from March 2018 through March 2019 and was reimbursed about $3,000 in car rentals.

 

Yuba County Administrator Bendorf gave us the flawed Measure K 1% sales tax increase that was invalidated by Yuba Superior Court Judge Berrier’s ruling. Bendorf and Yuba County Supervisors chose to appeal Berrier’s ruling costing county taxpayers $10,000 a day until the case is ruled upon in Sacramento.

 

That $10,000 a day could have been used by hard-working families for children’s clothes and medical care, for mortgages etc. More than $4 million dollars have been taken by the county from some of the poorest people in California in what amounts to government fraud.

 

Yuba County Supervisor Gary Bradford was the most outspoken proponent of Measure K, falsely claiming that the monies from K were dedicated to public safety and to a special restricted fund. Bradford may have been easily confused by Bendorf or he knew the truth and chose to deceive his constituents.

 

Bradford claims to be a conservative but has never found a tax he didn’t support including the plethora of bond measures on the current ballot. In fact, he opposed the 2016 Prop 6 gas tax repeal. The repeal was defeated leading to gas tax funds being diverted from road upgrades to be used for the bullet train and mass transit.

 

Even Assemblyman Gallagher and Senator Nielsen, both Republicans, said there were ample funds in the budget to maintain the roads without SB1 that hiked fuel taxes and DMV fees. Californians are paying 10 times the DMV fees compared to the same vehicles registered in some states due to SB1.

 

Gas prices in states like Missouri and Tennessee are in the $1.70’s and $1.80 per gallon compared to over $3.18 in Marysville, CA. And, Bradford endorsed that.

 

Thinking about not voting? Those choosing not to vote give their choice to others and this is the California they get.