By Katy Grimes, November 6, 2019 from the California Globe
Debra Desrosiers, President of the Sacramento Taxpayers Association, walked out of Sam’s Club in Yuba City Saturday and saw a guy at a table collecting signatures for ballot initiatives. “Read the signs… who wouldn’t sign what is on the table? It looks great, right?” Debra said.
“But do you really know what those petitions say? I asked the guy if he was a paid signature gatherer, he said he was a volunteer – a lie. I asked him if he normally just hangs out volunteering to raise taxes on consumers for fun, oh and by the way, he lives in Florida, he doesn’t care.”
“I asked him which one of the petitions would protect Proposition 13, he couldn’t answer – he said I’d have to read them. I already have.”
Debra identified each sign (in bold).
“Mega Corps Pay Their Property Taxes” – “This I assume is referring to the Split Roll – Initiative 19-0008A – Removing commercial and industrial properties from Proposition 13, and reassessing them at market value every year,” Debra said. “But it’s being sold as ‘Increasing Funding for Public Schools, Community Colleges, Local Government Services,’ which it may, but did you see what they are doing with our gas tax? Can you imagine the swings in taxes this will cause for businesses and school budgets trying to calculate revenue? Have you thought about who will pay these tax increases? It’s you and me. When property taxes increase the burden is pushed down hill, the tenants’ rents are increased and the cost of their goods and services increase and we pay more. We end up paying the property tax increase as consumers.”
“When the local gas station gets reassessed, who will pay those property taxes?” Debra asked. “You. When your grocery store gets reassessed, who will pay? You.”
Debra posted a video on youtube of her interaction.
She says, “Ask the petition gatherer this, ‘So, you’re in front of a business that will have increased property taxes and who do you think will pay those taxes?’ I actually heard a petition gatherer tell people that commercial property owners don’t pay anything towards school funding. My head almost exploded as the uninformed petition signers said things like, ‘Ya, get it from the deep pockets.’ I’m not kidding.”
“Property Tax Break” – This is referring to Initiative 19-0003, being sold as “Closing Special Loopholes.” “This would allow ‘portability’ of the tax base for property owners 55+, severely disabled, victims of natural disaster and victims of hazardous waste contamination to move to any county in California and transfer their tax base, which sounds great,” Debra said. “But did you know that we already passed Propositions 60 and 90 that allow that – if a county chooses to participate, only 10 counties choose to participate. To be clear though, this would remove the requirement to buy at equal or lesser value to qualify for the tax base transfer – but if you actually do the math, it is still a huge tax base increase. The other ‘loophole’ is the parent/grandparent to child/grandchild tax base transfer already in effect through Propositions 58 and 193, but listen to this… this would force the heir to physically move into their deceased loved ones home to transfer the tax base. Think about that.”
“Ask the petition gatherer this, ‘You realize that we can already transfer the tax base to a participating county? How about if we get more counties to participate in that “loophole?’”
“Save Prop 13” – “I really have no idea what this is about because every petition related to property taxes on those petition tables is a flat out attack on Proposition 13 and all of the other Propositions passed by voters since 1978 that enhance Proposition 13 for property owners.”
Debra says, “Ask the petition gatherer this, ‘Which one of these petitions will save Prop 13?’ See what they say and let me know, because the real answer is ‘NONE.’”
“The Recall Newsom petition is the bait, it’s on the top of the petition clipboard, under that petition are all the others and I watched people mindlessly sign petition after petition not reading a single word and believing every word the PAID petition gatherer said,” she said. “Be careful, know what you are signing. Please pass the word to your friends.”
Most importantly, “If you think you signed a petition by mistake and are interested in signing a rescission to remove your signature, please let me know,” Debra said. “We can get you to the site that will do that. It’s OK, you didn’t know, but let’s fix it.”
“I’m not telling you what to sign or not sign, but please read the petitions and understand what you are signing. Everything that is circulating right now is on the Secretary of State’s website.”
Double check all ballot initiatives at this link: Initiatives Cleared for Circulation.