ANGELES — The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce announced today its
endorsement of Governor Jerry Brown's proposal to hold a special election in
June to address the state budget crisis with an equal combination of spending
cuts and a temporary extension of the tax increases put into place two years
Brown’s proposal to combine dramatic budget reductions with a temporary
extension of higher rates on the state income tax, sales tax and the motor
vehicles registration fee is fiscally responsible,” said L.A. Area Chamber
President & CEO Gary Toebben.
other option the Chamber considered was to address the deficit through spending
cuts only. “We discussed this option at
length, because it was our first choice, but we simply did not feel that the
basic infrastructure of our state could be maintained if $25 billion in budget
cuts were put into place at this time,” Toebben said. “We know that extending the tax increases
will have a short-term negative impact on our economy, but not as negative as
the dramatic reduction in education, infrastructure and social services that
would come from a $25 billion budget cut.
Chamber also discussed with Governor Brown its strong feelings about the need
for reducing the State’s long term budget deficit through pension reform and
regulatory reform with an emphasis on the California Environmental Quality Act
known as CEQA. Follow up meetings are
planned in Sacramento with the Governor’s senior staff to work through the
Chamber Executive Committee’s specific recommendations.
addition to balancing the budget today, California needs reforms that will have
a positive and long-term impact on revenue and expenditures in the future,”
said Joseph Czyzyk, chair of the Chamber’s Board of Directors and chairman
& CEO of Mercury Air Group, Inc. “We
look forward to continuing to work with the Governor on these reforms, because
we share the common goal of putting California on a path to fiscal stability
and economic growth as soon as possible,” said Czyzyk, who is a lifelong Republican.
Chamber is calling on both Democratic and Republican lawmakers to take a
leadership role in working with the Governor to present a plan to the voters in
June. “Painful as these budget cuts and
tax extensions may be, we need a bipartisan solution for the good of all
Californians,” Toebben said. “The voters
will only endorse a budget that is void of smoke and mirrors and provides hope
for the future.”
Chamber’s Executive Committee of its Board of Directors voted to support the
plan at its Feb. 17 meeting contingent on conversations with Gov. Brown which
took place during the days the followed.
The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce represents the
interests of business in L.A. County. Founded in 1888, the Chamber promotes a
prosperous economy and quality of life in the Los Angeles region. For more information, visit www.lachamber.com.