City of Fillmore
City of Fillmore

CITY OF FILLMORE CITY COUNCIL AND FILLMORE SENIOR CENTER INC. JOINT MEETING
TUESDAY, APRIL 24, 2012, 6:30 P.M.
FILLMORE CITY HALL, CENTRAL PARK PLAZA, 250 CENTRAL AVENUE, FILLMORE, CALIFORNIA 93015-1907

AGENDA
1. Call to Order: 6:30 P.M.
2. Pledge of Allegiance
3. Roll Call: Councilmembers Steve Conaway, A. Eduardo Gonzalez, Brian Sipes, Mayor Pro Tem Jamey Brooks and Mayor Gayle Washburn.
Board Members: Vivian Johnson, Neva Picketts, Alternate Scott Painter, Treasurer Iris Martin, Secretary Gloria Hansen, Vice President Don Murphy, and President Donna Voelker.
4. Approval of Agenda
5. Public Comments
6. Joint City Council/Fillmore Senior Center Inc. Business Items
A. Review Prior Year Items/Activities.
B. Discuss Current Activities.
C. Discuss Funding for Fiscal Year 2012.
D. Status of Agreement between the City of Fillmore and Fillmore Senior Center Inc.
7. Senior Center Inc. Adjournment – Fillmore Senior Center Board adjourns to its next regular meeting scheduled for Monday, May 21, 2012, at 1:00 p.m. at the Fillmore Senior Center, 533 Santa Clara Street.
8. Presentations and Announcements
9. City Council Consent Calendar
Recommendation for Items A. through F. is to Approve.
A. Warrant List for APRIL 24, 2012.
B. Appointment to Area Housing Authority Resident Commissioner Position.
C. Approval of the Refinance and Subordination Agreement for 208 Blaine Avenue; and Authorize the City Manager, or her designee, to take all necessary actions relating to the execution and recordation of the Subordination Agreement.
D. Approval of the Refinance and Subordination Agreement for 949 Santa Fe; and Authorize the City Manager, or her designee, to take all necessary actions relating to the execution and recordation of the Subordination Agreement.
E. Acceptance of Field Inventory of Properties Requiring Weed Abatement and instruction for Fire Chief to notify property owners, and adoption of
Fillmore City Council and Fillmore Senior Center Inc. Meeting Agenda – April 24, 2012
City Council Resolution No. 12-3333 setting a public hearing for the abatement of weeds for May 8, 2012.
F. Authorization for the Mayor to sign the proposed letter to the California Public Utilities Commission Encouraging the Adoption of a No-Cost Opt-Out Provision for Smart Meters.
10. Public Hearing
A. Public Hearing to Set Aside City Council Resolution No. 10-3274; Reconsider Vesting Tentative Tract Map 5844 (Subdivision of El Dorado Mobilehome Park into 302 Condominium Lots and One Common Area Lot) in Light of Ventura County Superior Court Order dated October 20, 2011, and Stipulated Order to hold a hearing on the Vesting Tentative Tract Map 5844 by April 24, 2012.
Recommendation: 1) Open public hearing and receive public testimony; and, 2) Continue public hearing to May 8 in light of ongoing settlement discussion between the litigants and applicant trust account deficiencies.
11. Committee, Commission, and Board Reports
12. City Council Reports, Recommendations, and Comments
A. City Councilmember Travel Requests/Brief Reports
B. Any Councilmember May Propose Items for Placement on Future Agenda
C. Council Referrals/Brief Comments
13. City Manager
A. Follow-Up on Requests from the Public/City Council
14. Closed Session
A. Conference with Legal Counsel - Existing Litigation (subdivision (a) of Section 54956.9). El Dorado Estates v. City of Fillmore, Case No. CV11-07562 SJO, United States District Court for the Central District; and El Dorado Estates v. City of Fillmore, Case No. 56-2009-00358555-CU-WM-VTA, Ventura Superior Court.
15. Adjournment: City Council adjourns. The next City Council meeting is a joint meeting with the Film Commission scheduled for Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall, 250 Central Avenue.
Agenda Posted: April 19, 2012, 5:00 p.m.

 


 

After returning from his military deployment to Afghanistan, Assemblyman Jeff Gorell will be resuming his series of “Sidewalk Office Hours” where he looks forward to meeting with constituents and discussing their concerns.

The next public event will be on Friday, April 27th in Moorpark in front of the Grinder Restaurant on West Los Angeles Avenue from 9:00 am until 11:00 am. Please come by and share your opinions and ideas with Assembly Member Jeff Gorell in person on Friday, April 27th in front of:

Grinder Restaurant
1 West Los Angeles Avenue
Moorpark, CA 91321

Grinder Restaurant is located near the corner of West Los Angeles Avenue and Moorpark Avenue in the city of Moorpark. For complete directions you can visit GoogleMaps at: http://g.co/maps/u73cq

Jeff has already held sidewalk office hours in Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, Camarillo and Simi Valley prior to his military deployment, and his office continued these meetings throughout the 37th assembly district during his absence. This will be the first sidewalk office hours since his return from Afghanistan.

For additional information, please call Jeff's district office at (805) 230-9167.

 


 

George Runner today announced that Senator Bob Dutton will soon introduce Runner’s proposal to cap the gas tax.

“Senator Dutton is stepping forward to fight for California consumers who are sick of high gas prices,” said Runner. “Lawmakers like to complain about high gas prices. Now they have a chance to do something to help.”

The legislation would cap the state excise tax on gasoline at 35.7 cents and limit sales tax to the first $4.00 per gallon of gasoline. It would also cap diesel taxes at their current levels.

“I’m excited to carry this piece of legislation developed by Senator Runner,” said Senator Dutton. “It will allow government to get its fair share of the gas taxes, while ensuring taxpayers aren’t gouged by additional taxes when gas prices rise above $4 a gallon, as motorists have experienced the last several months.”

Dutton added, “I believe California’s economy is best served when the residents have the ability to hold on to more of their hard-earned paychecks. We all feel the financial burden of increased gas prices and those high prices should not result in a windfall for government.”

Both elected officials warned that should the average annual fuel price rises just one dollar—from $4 to $5 per gallon—the typical California consumer would be forced to pay 8 cents more in taxes per gallon. For most consumers this would translate into a $1 or more in additional tax for each tank of gas.

As a whole, California consumers would be burdened $1.4 billion more in gas taxes each year – on top of the nearly $7 billion in taxes they are already paying.

“Most Californians don’t realize they’re already paying about $10 in tax each time they fill up their gas tank,” said Runner. “Without a cap, that number could get even worse.”

According to the American Petroleum Institute, California's gasoline taxes and fees, averaging 69 cents per gallon, are the second highest in the nation. California’s diesel taxes, averaging 79.5 cents per gallon, are the highest in the nation.

Among these taxes and fees are a federal excise tax of 18.4 cents per gallon, a state excise tax of 35.7 cents per gallon and a sales tax that averages 3.12%. Notably, the sales tax is calculated on the total price of the fuel sale including excise taxes, resulting in double taxation—California consumers pay a tax on a tax.

The measure would not worsen the state’s budget, as Governor Jerry Brown’s budget proposal projected average quarterly fuel prices of no greater than $3.82 during the 2012-13 fiscal year.

The proposal, which has received early support from the National Tax Limitation Committee, will be amended into SB 1396 with an urgency clause, ensuring that it will take effect immediately once signed by the Governor.

 


 

CAMARILLO, CA - Senator Tony Strickland, a candidate for Congress in California’s open 26th Congressional District announced today that he raised $770,000 in the first campaign reporting period and will report $720,000 cash on hand.

“I’m very humbled by the tremendous support our campaign has received in just 11 weeks,” said Strickland. “Our fast start will allow us to deliver our message of job creation and uniting our community around economic policies that provide hope for families struggling to make ends meet.”

Although California’s 26th Congressional district is rated by the respected Cook Political Report and Larry Sabato’s “Crystal Ball” as a true “toss-up” race, Strickland begins the campaign with a large advantage having already represented every part of the Congressional District during his service in the State Assembly and State Senate.

Running in California’s new top-two primary system means that Strickland, as the only candidate with significant name identification, will be able to save a significant amount of resources for the general election in November.

“Strickland’s first quarter total is more than two and a half times what the top Democrat front-runner reported and is among the top first quarters for any candidate in an open seat in recent U.S. history,” said respected California fundraiser Jeff Miller.

State Senator Tony Strickland was elected to the California State Senate representing parts of Ventura, Los Angeles and Santa Barbara Counties in 2008. He previously served the area as a member of the State Assembly from 1998 to 2004. He is married to his wife of 14 years, Audra. Together they have two small children: Ruby Ruth and Anthony Paul.

 

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City of Fillmore
City of Fillmore

CITY OF FILLMORE CITY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING
TUESDAY, APRIL 10, 2012
6:30 P.M.
FILLMORE CITY HALL
CENTRAL PARK PLAZA
250 CENTRAL AVENUE
FILLMORE, CALIFORNIA 93015-1907

AGENDA
1.
Call to Order: 6:30 P.M.
2.
Pledge of Allegiance
3.
Roll Call: Councilmembers Conaway, Gonzalez, Sipes, Mayor Pro Tem Brooks and Mayor Washburn
4.
Approval of Agenda
5.
Presentations and Announcements
6.
Public Comments
7.
Consent Calendar
Recommendation for Items A. through E. is to Approve.
A. Warrant List for APRIL 10, 2012.
B. Minutes of MARCH 13, 2012, Regular Meeting
C. Minutes of MARCH 27, 2012, Special Meeting.
D. Adopt Resolution No. 12-3332, Supporting William L. Morris Dealership in Maintaining Its Current Design Character Which is Consistent With the Adopted Ventura Street Design Guidelines.
E. Authorization and Approval to Release Warrant Payments to Vendors during Council Dark Periods.
8.
Public Hearings
A.
Request for Modification #3 to Tentative Tract map 5784 – Item continued to a date to be determined.
B.
Request for Modification #6 to Tentative Tract Map 5785 – Item continued to a date to be determined.
C.
Requests for Modifications: 1) #4 to TTR 5785, DP 07-01; 2) #2 to 5784, DP 07-02; 3) #2 to TTR 5803, and 4) #3 to DP 07-03, CUP 08-03, LLA 08-02 – Item continued to a date to be determined.
9.
Department Reports
Community Development
9A.Request City Council to Review and Provide an Interpretation of the Zoning Ordinance Regarding Chickens.
Fillmore City Council Meeting Agenda – April 10, 2012
Recommendation: 1).Recognize that the Zoning Ordinance does no allow chickens or any agricultural animal in Residential medium designation; and
2) Direct the Code Enforcement Department that roosters are not permitted in any residential designation due to incompatibility with residential uses;
and
3) Direct the Code Enforcement Department that chicken are allowed in Residential Low designation but chickens are to be limited to three per yard like domestic animals and chickens must be confined to the yards.
City Manager
9B.Consideration of and Direction to Staff Concerning the Volunteer Coordinator Position.
Recommendation: 1) Provide direction concerning the Volunteer Coordinator position.
10.
Committee, Commission, and Board Reports
11.
City Council Reports, Recommendations, and Comments
A.
City Councilmember Travel Requests/Brief Reports
B.
Any Councilmember May Propose Items for Placement on Future Agenda
C.
Council Referrals/Brief Comments
12.
City Manager
A.
Follow-Up on Requests from the Public/City Council
13.
Closed Session
A. Conference with Legal Counsel – Existing Litigation [subdivision (a) of Section 54956.9]: City of Industry and City of Livermore v. City of Fillmore, et. al. Case No. BC411865, Los Angeles County Superior Court.
B.
Conference with Legal Counsel - Existing Litigation (subdivision (a) of Section 54956.9). El Dorado Estates v. City of Fillmore, Case No. CV11-07562 SJO, United States District Court for the Central District; and El Dorado Estates v. City of Fillmore, Case No. 56-2009-00358555-CU-WM-VTA, Ventura Superior Court.
Fillmore City Council Meeting Agenda – April 10, 2012
14. Adjournment: City Council adjourns. The next City Council meeting is a Joint Meeting with the Senior Center scheduled for Tuesday, April 24, 2012, at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall, 250 Central Avenue.
Agenda Posted: April 6, 2012, 5:00 p.m.

 
City of Fillmore
City of Fillmore

CITY OF FILLMORE SUCCESSOR AGENCY REGULAR MEETING
TUESDAY, APRIL 10, 2012
6:30 P.M.
FILLMORE CITY HALL
CENTRAL PARK PLAZA
250 CENTRAL AVENUE
FILLMORE, CALIFORNIA 93015-1907

AGENDA
1.
Call to Order: 6:30 P.M.
2.
Pledge of Allegiance
3.
Roll Call: Successor Agency Member Steve Conaway, Successor Agency Member A. Eduardo Gonzalez, Successor Agency Member Brian Sipes, Vice Chair Jamey Brooks and Chair Gayle Washburn.
4.
Public Comments
5.
Successor Agency Consent Calendar
Recommendation for Items A. through D. is to Approve.
A. Warrant List for APRIL 10, 2012.
B. Minutes of MARCH 27, 2012, Regular Meeting.
C. Authorization and Approval to Release Warrant Payments to Vendors During Agency Dark Periods.
D. Adopt the First Amended Draft Recognized Obligation Payment Schedule (ROPS) dated April 10, 2012, in Accordance With Health and Safety Code Section 34177, and Authorize the Executive Director, or Her Designee to Take All Necessary Actions to Submit the ROPS to the Appropriate Parties and Take Any Other Necessary Actions With Respect Thereto on Behalf of the Successor Agency.
6.
Committee, Commission, and Board Reports
7.
Agency Member Reports, Recommendations, and Comments
A.
Agency Member Travel Requests/Brief Reports
B.
Agency Member May Propose Items for Placement on Future Agenda
C Agency Referrals/Brief Comments
8.
Executive Director
A.
Follow-Up on Requests from the Public/Agency
9.
Adjournment: Successor Agency adjourns. The next Successor Agency Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, APRIL 24, 2012, at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall, 250 Central Avenue.

 
Subcommittee on Immigration Policy and Enforcement, The Department of Homeland Security’s New Immigration Detention Standards

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today our hearing focuses on the detention of illegal and criminal immigrants. From the onset, I would like to be clear that no member is against the humane treatment of detainees. However, I am concerned with ICE’s new Performance Based Detention Standards because they unreasonably put the interests of removable aliens ahead of the interest of the nation.

Full implementation of the new detention standards is likely to be extremely costly. Nevertheless, cost estimates are not addressed at any point in the 400-plus pages of standards. Has ICE considered the impact of this new policy on the American taxpayers?

To make matters worse, the impetus for the new standards have little to do with a need for detention reform. Rather, they are part of an extensive public relations effort aimed at pro-amnesty advocates.

Shortly after the CONTINUED »

 

SACRAMENTO, CA. – The office of Assembly Member Jeff Gorell today honored Jacqui Irwin as the 2012 Woman of the Year for the 37th Assembly District during a special Assembly ceremony at the State Capitol. Jacqui Irwin is currently serving her second term as mayor of Thousand Oaks, where she has been a city Councilmember since 2004. Mayor Irwin’s tireless involvement with community groups, non-profits, schools, and PTAs have made her a highly successful role model for women in Ventura County and throughout California.

“I am delighted that we were able to honor Mayor Jacqui Irwin as our Woman of the Year for 2012,” said Ernie Villegas, District Director for Assemblyman Gorell. “In choosing a candidate for this honor, we look to find the person who has given generously of their personal time to public service. The person must be outstanding in their dedication to the community.”

“It was a privilege to be in the company of the outstanding California women that were chosen to represent their communities,” stated Mayor Irwin. “I’m also very happy that Assemblyman Gorell is on his way home from Afghanistan, and I look forward to working with him on the many challenging issues that are facing our county.”

Held annually, the Woman of the Year ceremony celebrates California’s extraordinary women. Started in 1987 to help commemorate Women’s History Month, the event has become an annual Capitol tradition to salute community service. Honorees are presented with a framed certificate from the State Assembly recognizing their outstanding contributions during a special ceremony in the Assembly chambers.

A third generation naval officer, Assembly Member Jeff Gorell was called back to active duty by the U.S. Navy a year ago for deployment to Afghanistan. He currently holds the rank of Lt. Commander with the Navy (Reserve) as an intelligence officer and has previously served a tour of duty in Afghanistan shortly after the events of 9/11.

Mayor Irwin has an impressive list of public service and community involvements that include serving as President of the Thousand Oaks Titans Football Association, and Chair of the American Diabetes Association Bike Ride. She has also worked with the Conejo Schools Foundation. She is on the executive board for the Ventura County Chapter of the American Red Cross, the Ventura County Boy Scouts, the CSUCI Arts and Sciences Leadership Council, fundraising committee for the Girl Scouts of the Central Coast, and named 2011 Girl Scout Woman of Distinction. She has been chair of the American Cancer Society’s Bugatti Ball in 2011, and 2012 Gala event.

 

As the office of Assemblyman Jeff Gorell prepares for his return home after serving overseas in Afghanistan for the past year, Assembly Republicans stood together today to present legislation designed to help veterans return to a productive civilian life.

“From Pearl Harbor and Vietnam to Afghanistan and Iraq, our veterans were there when our country needed them,” said Assembly Member Paul Cook, (R-Yucca Valley), the chair of the Assembly Veterans Affairs Committee and a retired Marine Corps Colonel. “Now it’s our responsibility as legislators and grateful Americans to be there for them when they return home. That is why we are introducing proposals to ensure that veterans receive the services and benefits they deserve.”

Gorell’s office has worked to prepare five bills addressing veterans’ issues that have been raised in his absence. All five bills have been introduced by Assemblyman Cook to meet legislative deadlines, but will be advanced through the legislature by Assemblyman Gorell upon his return in just a few weeks. These bills are:

• Making it easier for our troops to vote (AB 1929)

• Helping veterans obtain state employment (AB 1930)

• Creating a “one-stop shop” for veterans to access services and benefits (AB 1931)

• Making sure military training counts for licensure of health care jobs (AB 1932)

• Allowing former military police officers to more easily qualify as local police officers (AB 2130)

A third generation naval officer, Assembly Member Jeff Gorell was called back to active duty by the U.S. Navy a year ago for deployment to Afghanistan. He currently holds the rank of Lt. Commander with the Navy (Reserve) as an intelligence officer and has previously served a tour of duty in Afghanistan shortly after the events of 9/11.

 
"Maybe the copy key got stuck on the presidential speechwriter's keyboard."

Written By DANIEL HALPER

Thomas Buch-Andersen, host of the Danish TV show Detektor, mocked President Obama's political rhetoric in a recent episode. "Obama used a metaphor from boxing to explain Denmark's role in the world," says Buch-Andersen, introducing the segment.

He then rolls the tape. "That's fairly typical of the way that Danes have punched above their weight in international affairs," President Obama says at a press availability in the Oval Office with Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt of Denmark.

"It's nice to be praised," Buch-Andersen remarks. "We punch harder than our weight class would suggest. But how much should we read into his words? According to Obama, are we doing any better than, say, the Norwegians?"

The TV host... http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/danish-tv-host-mocks-obama-his-rheto...

 

George Runner today called upon state lawmakers to limit fuel taxes Californians pay at the pump to the first $4.00 per gallon.

“While taxes aren’t the only reason for rising fuel prices, they are part of the problem,” said Runner. “As fuel prices rise, California consumers are paying more tax for less gas.”

According to the latest Energy Information Administration numbers, California consumers are paying $4.38 per gallon of regular unleaded fuel, the highest price anywhere in the continental United States. Only residents of Hawaii pay more.

“These sky-high fuel prices contain hidden taxes that drive up the price we pay at the pump. Each and every time fuel prices rise, our taxes go up too,” said Runner. “It’s time we draw the line on any further increases.”

According to the American Petroleum Institute, California's gasoline taxes and fees, averaging 67 cents per gallon, are tied with Connecticut’s as the second highest in the nation. California’s diesel taxes, averaging 75.9 cents per gallon, are the highest in the nation.

Among these taxes and fees are a federal excise tax of 18.4 cents per gallon, a state excise tax of 35.7 cents per gallon and a sales tax of 2.25% plus applicable local taxes. Notably, the sales tax is calculated on the total price of the fuel sale including excise taxes, resulting in double taxation—California consumers pay a tax on a tax.

For diesel, the federal excise tax is 24.4 cents per gallon, the state excise tax is 13 cents per gallon and the sales tax is 9.12% plus applicable local taxes.

According to Runner, since the sales tax is calculated per dollar spent rather than per gallon of fuel, government coffers receive an unanticipated windfall when fuel prices rise.

The latest official numbers support Runner’s case. Even with lower levels of consumption, rising fuel prices have spurred fuel tax revenues to record levels. For instance, due to rising fuel prices the state collected $61 million more in fuel tax revenues during second quarter of 2011 than during the second quarter of 2010 even though fuel consumption fell by 127 million gallons.

In 2010 the Legislature enacted a law requiring the State Board of Equalization to lower the sales tax on fuel and raise the excise tax by a corresponding amount. As a result the excise tax for motor vehicle fuel is currently 35.7 cents per gallon, but the BOE must readjust it annually to ensure “revenue neutrality.” The rate is currently set to increase to 36 cents effective July 1.

Runner’s proposal would cap the excise tax on motor vehicle fuel at 35.7 cents and limit sales tax to the first $4.00 per gallon of gasoline. It would also cap diesel taxes at current levels.

Lew Uhler, founder and president of the National Tax Limitation Committee, endorsed Runner’s proposal, saying, “Without limits, government always tries to take more and more of our money. It’s time we said ‘Enough is enough.’ The double tax on gasoline – geared to price changes – creates a perverse windfall for the government big spenders precisely when rising gas prices hurt consumers most. Capping the gas tax will help California taxpayers keep more of their hard-earned dollars where they belong—in their own pockets.”

Runner concluded, “Capping fuel taxes could keep hundreds of millions of dollars in the pockets of California consumers, help consumer confidence and bolster California’s economy. Even so, the state would still receive all of the fuel tax revenue the Governor was counting on in his January budget.”

Governor Jerry Brown’s budget projects average quarterly fuel prices of no greater than $3.82 during the 2012-13 fiscal year.

Runner indicated his office is preparing urgency legislation for possible consideration by the Legislature in the coming weeks.

Elected in November 2010, George Runner represents more than nine million Californians as a member of the State Board of Equalization. For more information, visit www.boe.ca.gov/Runner.

 

 
Ethics askew when dispatching babies seen as morally equivalent to abortion

Written By Rep. Christopher H. Smith

Late last month, two bioethicists - Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva - published an outrageous “paper” in the Journal of Medical Ethics justifying the deliberate, premeditated murder of newborn babies during the first days and weeks after birth.

Mr. Giubilini and Ms. Minerva wrote “when circumstances occur after birth such that they would have justified abortion, what we call after-birth abortion should be permissible.”

If a newly born child poses an economic burden on a family, is disabled or is unwanted, that child can be murdered in cold blood because the baby lacks intrinsic value and, according to the professors, is not a person.

Mr. Giubilini and Ms. Minerva wrote, “Actual people’s well-being could be threatened by the new (even if healthy) child requiring energy, money and care which the family might happen to be in short supply of.”

As any parents - especially moms - will tell you, children in general and newborns in particular require enormous energy, money and boatloads of love. If any of these are lacking or pose what the authors called a “threat,” does that justify a death sentence?

Are the lives of... http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/mar/12/premeditated-murder-of-n...

 

Written By Liz Klimas

In the heart of Utah’s desert, the National Security Agency is well underway on a project that has been called the nation’s largest, most expensive cyber-security project. Naturally, almost all details about the building’s soon-to-be inner activities are highly classified and no one is talking — officials in Bluffdale where it is being built and the nearby Salt Lake City are kept in the dark. Still, Wired’s Threat Level has gotten some details on the building and provides analysis on some of its expected activity.

Wired describes that the building is ironically and “blandly” named the Utah Data Center. When completed in Sept. 2013 it will house four 25,000 square foot halls of servers, among other things. Wired states that the cost for the project is estimated at $2 billion.

Here‘s some of the data center’s purpose:

Flowing through its servers and routers and stored in near-bottomless databases will be all forms of communication, including the complete contents of private emails, cell phone calls, and Google searches, as well as all sorts of personal data trails—parking receipts, travel itineraries, bookstore purchases, and other digital “pocket litter.”

Wired reports that... http://www.theblaze.com/stories/new-details-on-nsas-new-spy-center-and-s...

 
Pat Buchanan describes how offending PC culture 'gets you hauled before an inquisition'

Written By Patrick J. Buchanan

The original “Hollywood blacklist” dates back to 1947, when 10 members of the Communist Party, present or former, invoked the Fifth Amendment before the House Committee on Un-American Activities.

The party was then a wholly owned subsidiary of the Comintern of Josef Stalin, whose victims had surpassed in number those of Adolf Hitler.

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Epson.com/WorkforceIn a 346-17 vote, the Hollywood Ten (save one who recanted, Edward Dmytryk) were charged with contempt of Congress and suspended or fired.

The blacklist had... http://www.wnd.com/2012/03/rush-and-the-new-blacklist/

 
No one should write off the Golden State. But it will take massive reforms to reverse its economic decline...

Written By MICHAEL J. BOSKIN and JOHN F. COGAN

Long a harbinger of national trends and an incubator of innovation, cash-strapped California eagerly awaits a temporary revenue surge from Facebook IPO stock options and capital gains. Meanwhile, Stockton may soon become the state's largest city to go bust. Call it the agony and ecstasy of contemporary California.

California's rising standards of living and outstanding public schools and universities once attracted millions seeking upward economic mobility. But then something went radically wrong as California legislatures and governors built a welfare state on high tax rates, liberal entitlement benefits, and excessive regulation. The results, though predictable, are nonetheless striking. From the mid-1980s to 2005, California's population grew by 10 million, while Medicaid recipients soared by seven million; tax filers paying income taxes rose by just 150,000; and the prison population swelled by 115,000.

California's economy, which used to outperform the rest of the country, now substantially underperforms. The unemployment rate, at 10.9%, is higher than every other state except Nevada and Rhode Island. With 12% of America's population, California has one third of the nation's welfare recipients.

Partly due to... http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405270230453790457727724268236469...

 

By Larry Klayman

Andrew Breitbart still lives. That heroic and fearless Internet guru who collapsed recently is perhaps even bigger in death than he was in life. During his time on earth and now from his grave, Breitbart was and is not afraid to report on issues involving Barack Hussein Obama’s association with black supremacists and fraudsters and racial politics in general.

I got to know Andrew about a year and a half ago when we met to discuss the burgeoning, but thus far “under the radar” African-American agricultural loan scandal, which he was one of the first to have reported. Spurred by Andrew’s new revelations about the scandal, in an editorial earlier this year, the Washington Times, described it this way:

“Race hustlers are shaking down taxpayers for payoffs, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is falling for the scam. The controversy involves discrimination claims against the USDA for allegedly denying loans because of race. A federal judge approved payments of $50,000 or more based on low levels of proof. This encouraged a mad scramble for cash based on false claims.

“The ‘Pigford Settlement,’ an agreement that came out of the original 1997 lawsuit by Timothy Pigford and 400 southern black farmers, resulted from some apparently legitimate instances of discrimination. However, plaintiffs’ lawyers got involved, and the number of supposedly aggrieved farmers grew exponentially. Eventually, more than 94,000 claims were filed even though the U.S. Census Bureau never counted more than 33,000 black farmers in America during the years in question.

“In 2007, then-Sen. Barack Obama began working to pass legislation providing even more money for a whole new class of claimants via ‘Pigford II.’ This push ignored fraud in and several convictions over the original settlement, but Mr. Obama was advised his legislation could help him in a Democratic presidential primary fight against then-Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton. As president, Mr. Obama rammed this new, $4.6 billion boondoggle through Congress during last year’s post election, lame-duck session.” See “Editorial: USDA’s Pigford Fraud – Obama Initiative Ignores Corruption to Redistribute Wealth.” [Washington Times, Feb. 2, 2011]

In essence, the Pigford scandal – appropriately named for its pork-laden largess on behalf of alleged black farmers – constitutes reparations for over a century of alleged white discrimination. The court settlement – rubber stamped by a liberal Democratic federal judge in the predominantly black District of Columbia, Paul Friedman, who paid little attention to its proclivity to create “open season” for fraudulent claims – has been misused as a back door way to get “whitey” to pay reparations to blacks without regard to whether or not each individual black claimant indeed has a claim to the settlement money. Even worse, this scam of the American taxpayer – so cash-strapped these days with the continuing deep recession – has soldiered on without any real scrutiny by Congress, save just a few lawmakers like Michele Bachmann and Stephen King, because the establishment Republican leadership is afraid to touch on issues that involve African-Americans and race, particularly during an election cycle. Ironically, however, the Obama administration’s continuing support of the Pigford settlements amounts to little more than solidifying and buying black votes to re-elect the president and his leftist, socialist minions to office in 2012 – at a time when many black voters are dissatisfied with the Democrats’ efforts to give them the bigger “piece of the pie” they were promised during the prior 2008 election cycle.

But the Pigford fraud cannot just be explained as a cold and calculated effort by Obama and his comrades to buy votes. Recent revelations by Breibart’s still vibrant websites manned by his gifted surviving partners and staff have disclosed videos linking Obama to black supremacists and anti-Semites like former and recently deceased Harvard law professor Derrick Bell. Coupled with the president’s past association with the likes of radical anti-white and anti-Semitic Reverends Jeremiah Wright and Louis Farrahkan, among many other bigoted black “leaders,” this more than explains Obama’s penchant to pay reparations under fraudulent pretenses. The old proverb that “you are who you associate with” applies.

Bell’s racial view of whites and Jews in particular can be boiled down to two of his quotes. As WND reported recently, Breitbart editor Ben Shapiro commented, “This is a man so extreme that … he wrote a story in 1993 in which he posited that white Americans would sell black Americans into slavery to aliens to relieve the national debt, and that Jews would go along with it.” Adopting a statement from an older black lady who lived in the South and allegedly suffered discrimination, Bell’s motto became, “I lives to harass white folks.”

WND has also reported on Bell’s multiple visits to the Obama White House, once (and perhaps not coincidentally) on the day the president was to give his 2010 State of the Union address.

Months ago I wrote a column about Obama entitled “A president of ‘His People,’ not ‘We the People.’” This characterization has certainly been borne out even more with the Bell revelations and the president’s penchant to further the Pigford fraud.

The Breitbart videos linking Derrick Bell to Obama, showing the president as a Harvard law student leader asking his black compatriots to open their hearts and minds to this racist and anti-Semite, and then hugging Bell, more than unmasks who Obama really is. Whether it is Pigford black reparations or his disdain if not latent hatred for the Jewish state of Israel and his endorsement of the Ground Zero mosque – or a host of other similar outrages toward whites, Jews and Christians – this president certainly does not represent “We the People” but instead “his own people.”

That is why we must use all legal means to remove Obama and his racist, anti-Semitic comrades from access to the White House, and we must do so in short order before the country devolves further into a racial and religious civil war, and our nation and Israel are destroyed, by virtue of the president’s actions.

Larry Klayman is a former Justice Department prosecutor and the founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch. His latest book is "Whores: Why and How I Came to Fight the Establishment."

 

WASHINGTON, DC — Rep. Elton Gallegly (R-Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties) today introduced a bill that will protect the Navy’s ability to test weapon systems at Naval Base Ventura County’s San Nicolas Island and other testing areas in the wake of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s failed sea otter translocation program.

Gallegly’s Military Readiness and Southern Sea Otter Conservation Act will create new military readiness areas around all testing grounds off the Southern California coast, so as sea otters migrate into these waters the Navy will be able to continue its current activities while still offering protections for the animals.

“This bill will allow the Navy to continue testing and exercises off the Southern California coast, which is vital to our national defense, while also allowing the southern sea otter to expand its habitat to wherever it wants,” Gallegly said. It also protects endangered abalones and Southern California commercial shellfish fishing industry.

Sea otters were placed at San Nicholas Island in 1987 in hopes that they would establish a population there and stay out of the FWS’s no-otter zone south of Point Conception. The otters did not cooperate, however, and repeatedly violated the no-otter zone.

While the program was abandoned in 1993, it is only now being officially terminated.

Under the program, the Navy was allowed to treat the sea otters as a threatened species. With termination of the program, any sea otters that remain on San Nicholas Island would have to be treated with the more restrictive endangered classification.

If the Navy is forced to treat the sea otters as endangered it could jeopardize all testing and other activities around San Nicolas Island.

Gallegly’s bill directs FWS to take into account the recovery of endangered black and white abalone, along with the commercial harvest of shellfish fisheries, when enacting a new management plan for the recovery of southern sea otters. Both abalone and shellfish are prime food sources for the southern sea otter.

 

There’s an old adage that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. When it comes to politics, it nearly always is.

Say for instance a politician told you he could lower the cost of sending your kids to college by 2/3rds. You’d probably respond, “Great. What’s the catch?”

Your caution would be warranted. If a recent proposal by Speaker John Pérez becomes law, you might get some help with those soaring college fees, but don’t count on your kids finding jobs once they get that diploma.

The Speaker’s proposal, which he’s dubbed the “The California Middle Class Scholarship,” would impose a $1 billion dollar tax hike on “out-of-state” businesses to provide financial aid for college students. The plan targets a 2009 tax formula change that only became effective last year—after California voters rejected a November 2010 ballot measure that aimed to repeal it.

In his own words, the Speaker claims: “We're closing that loophole that only benefits out-of-state corporations at the expense of the rest of us in the state. And we're taking that benefit and directing it to middle-class families who are struggling to put their kids through college.”

Sounds good, right?

But there’s always a “catch.” This time there’s at least three:

First, many “out-of-state” companies, including manufacturers, retailers and others, have significant investments in California and employ millions of Californians. Like it or not, imposing a billion dollars in new taxes—without offsetting tax cuts—will tempt these companies to downsize their California presence, costing countless jobs. Given that California already has the second highest unemployment rate in the nation, that’s not the brightest idea.

Second, college costs aren’t fixed. When Californians lack jobs, revenues fall. When revenues fall, politicians raise college fees. Imposing new taxes on struggling job creators will only make this cycle worse, increasing college fees further. Plus, if the state’s revenue picture gets worse, the Speaker’s program could be cut too.

Third, taxpayers are footing the bill, but California’s hostile business climate increasingly means college graduates must leave California in order to find jobs. The Speaker’s “middle class scholarship” won’t create middle-class jobs in California; instead, the tax hike will educate the future workforce of Arizona, Oregon and Texas, to name a few.

Don’t get me wrong. Education is vital to the future of our state and a college education significantly improves one’s prospects of finding a job. California’s problem, which stems from our high tax and onerous regulatory climate, is that there simply aren’t enough jobs.

This scarcity means that college students with significant debt end up with jobs that only require a high school diploma. They displace the kids who only have high school diplomas. So now those kids must also go to college to have a chance of getting a job that only requires a high school diploma.

For California to succeed, our politicians need an education too. Even a basic understanding of economics would help them understand that rising college fees are a symptom, not the source of California’s problems. To solve the real problem, we need to attract middle-class jobs back to California, rather than drive them away. A billion dollar tax increase is not the solution.

And who knows? With good jobs, Californians might even be able to afford to send their kids to college without Speaker Pérez’s help.

Elected in November 2010, George Runner represents more than nine million Californians as a member of the State Board of Equalization. For more information, visit www.boe.ca.gov/Runner.

 
Governor’s Plan Would Also Destroy $267 Million in Business Investment

George Runner today criticized the Governor’s plan to impose higher taxes on working Californians. He released an analysis showing that a half cent sales tax increase would cost California thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in lost investment.

“Tax policy has consequences” said Runner. “As this analysis shows, a higher sales tax rate would take money out of the pockets of working Californians, destroying more than 23,000 jobs and $267 million in business investment. The projected job losses would be equivalent to every worker in a medium-sized California city like Glendora or West Sacramento losing their jobs.”

When considering tax increases, policymakers rely on static analyses that ignore behavioral changes by consumers and business owners. A dynamic analysis, like the one released by Runner, estimates the likely behavioral changes that could result from a higher tax rate.

The analysis, conducted by the State Board of Equalization, projects that nearly all of the proposed sales tax increase would be passed along to consumers. The state would receive $222 million less in revenues than projected by a static analysis, an 8% loss in potential revenue.

Runner added, “Since July of last year, lower tax rates have enabled Californians to keep more of their hard-earned dollars, and our economy is growing stronger. Let’s not rewind our progress by reinstating even a portion of the tax burden Californians endured during the Great Recession.”

The full analysis is available online at www.boe.ca.gov/Runner/info/pdf/Dynamic_Revenue.pdf.

Elected in November 2010, George Runner represents more than nine million Californians as a member of the State Board of Equalization. For more information, visit www.boe.ca.gov/Runner.