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On The Record With State Assemblyman Joel Anderson

Your browser does not support this object. View the original here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4SpyZq-RvY

Video published August 13, 2010 | Download MP4 | View transcript

Above: California Assemblyman Joel Anderson joins us in studio to discuss the state budget and how legislation he's proposing would allow Californians to use IOUs for state fees.

Transcript

This is a rush transcript created by a contractor for KPBS to improve accessibility for the deaf and hard-of-hearing. Please refer to the media file as the formal record of this interview. Opinions expressed by guests during interviews reflect the guest’s individual views and do not necessarily represent those of KPBS staff, members or its sponsors.

WE'RE 44 DAYS INTO THE STATE'S FISCAL YEAR AND THE CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE HAS YET TO AGREE ON THE STATE BUDGET. THE MORE TIME THAT PASSES, THE LESS CASH THE STATE HAS TO PAY ITS BILLS. IF THE STATE ISSUES IOUS AGAIN THIS YEAR - REPUBLICAN ASSEMBLYMAN JOEL ANDERSON OF EL CAJON HAS PROPOSED LEGISLATION THAT HE SAYS WOULD HELP PROTECT PEOPLE FROM BEING STUCK WITH THE BILL. WELCOME ASSEMBLYMAN ANDERSON.

THANK YOU, GLORIA, I APPRECIATING BEING -- APPRECIATE BEING ON THE SHOW.

TELL ME WHERE WE ARE WITH THE VOTE ON THE BUDGET.

WE HAVEN'T HAD A VOTE YET. I'M IN THE MINORITY PARTY. WE DON'T DICTATE WHEN THE VOTES COME. THE MAJORITY PARTY DOES. LAST YEAR, WE ISSUED OVER 450,000 IOUs, TOTALING MORE THAN $3 BILLION. AND MANY OF THESE I.O.U.s WENT TO INDIVIDUALS AND ALSO TO COMPANIES.

WHO GETS THE I.O.U.s?

VENDORS. PRIMARILY VENDORS OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA.

PEOPLE WHO SELL TO THE STATE?

OR PEOPLE WHO HAVE SERVICES. FOR EXAMPLE, WE HAVE NOVIS HOMES IN --NORTH HOMES IN SAN DIEGO COUNTY. THIS IS A 70-BED FACILITY FOR DOWN'S SYNDROME AND CEREBRAL PALSY CLIENTS. MANY ARE ORPHANS, THEIR PARENTS HAVE LONG SINCE PASSED AWAY. AND THEY'RE LOOKING AT A $270,000 FINE.

CAN THEY SAY OPEN UNDER THESE CIRCUMSTANCES.

I DON'T SEE HOW THEY CAN. BECAUSE THEY'RE HAVING A TOUGH TIME MEETING PAYROLL. AND AT THE SAME TIME, WE'RE ASKING THEM TO PAY PAYROLL TAXES.

LET'S TALK ABOUT THE BILL YOU'VE INTRODUCESSED TO LEGISLATURE THAT WOULD ALLOW -- INTRODUCED TO LEGISLATURE THAT WOULD ALLOW THEM.

IF WE ISSUE I.O.U.s. WE ALL UNDERSTAND FAIRNESS. IF A PERSON OWES YOU MONEY, YOU SHOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY THEM UNTIL YOU MAKE GOOD ON THAT DEBT. SO THIS BILL ALLOWS PEOPLE WHO RECEIVE I.O.U.s, TO TELL THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA, LEFT HAND PAY RIGHT HAND. IT'S STRAIGHTFORWARD AND SIMPLE. IT ALLOWS THEM THE PROTECTION TO PAY THEIR TAXES IN A TIME TIME --TIMELY FASHION.

I'M A STATE AGENCY. I PROVIDE A SERVICE TO THE STATE. YOU'RE THE STATE. YOU DON'T HAVE ANY MONEY. YOU GIVE ME AN I.O.U.

CORRECT.

AND YOU SAY TO ME, BY THE WAY, YOU OWE TAXES.

YOU OWE TAXES. YOU OWE YOUR DMV FEES, LICENSING FEES. YOU OWE ALL OF THESE THINGS. AND IF YOU DON'T PROVIDE IT, WE'RE GOING TO GIVE YOU PENALTIES AND INTEREST AND PROVIDE YOU MORE. AND YET WE'VE NEVER PROVIDED THE --YOU THE OPPORTUNITY TO PAY. THIS BILL, WILL MITIGATE DAMAGES.

BUT THE ARGUMENT AGAINST THE BILL IS THE GENERAL FUND NEEDS CASH. AND I.O.U.s OR WARRANTS OR NOTES OR WHATEVER YOU WANT TO CALL IT ARE NOT CASH.

WELL, WE HAVE THE CONTROLLER OF CALIFORNIA. I THINK WE CAN ALL AGREE THAT THE PERSON MOST RESPONSIBLE FOR THE CASH FLOW OF CALIFORNIA IS OUR OWN CONTROLLER. AND HE'S WRITTEN A LETTER IN SUPPORT OF THIS BILL. SO I WOULD DEFER TO HIM. I THINK HE'S LOOKING AT THIS AND SAYING, IF WE PUT THESE BUSINESSES OUT OF BUSINESS BECAUSE WE DON'T ALLOW THEM TO PAY THEIR TAXES AND FEES, THEN WE'RE GOING TO PAY MORE WHEN THEY DELIVER THEIR CLIENTS TO THE EMERGENCY ROOMS. WHEN THEY PUT ALL OF THOSE PEOPLE ON UNEMPLOYMENT. CALIFORNIA SHOULD NOT BE IN THE BUSINESS OF DESTROYING JOBS. AND THAT'S WHAT THESE I.O.U.s WILL DO, IF WE DON'T ACCEPT OUR OWN I.O.U.s BACK.

BUT THERE ARE I.O.U.S ALSO MAKING MONEY FOR THE AGENCY OR VENDOR. FOR EXAMPLE, IF YOU GET AN I.O.U., WHEN YOU TURN IT IN, THE STATE PAYS INTEREST ON IT.

WELL, IT DOESN'T MANDATE THAT YOU USE THE I.O.U. IF YOU DEEM IN YOUR BUSINESS THAT THREE AND THREE QUARTERS PERCENT INTEREST IS WORTHY TO KEEP THE I.O.U., THEN I'D ENCOURAGE YOU TO PAY THE I.O.U. BUT IF YOU WANT TO PAY YOUR TAXES, YOUR FEES, THIS WOULD ALLOW YOU TO SAY TO THE STATE. CALIFORNIA, LEFT HAND PAY RIGHT HAND.

YOU'VE BEEN IN THE ASSEMBLY NOW FOR FOUR YEARS. AND I.O.U.s HAVE BEEN AROUND FOR I DON'T KNOW HOW LONG. BUT THEY HAVE CERTAINLY BEEN AROUND IN RECENT HISTORY. YOU'RE WITH THE REPUBLICAN PARTY MINORITY PARTY. WHAT CHANCE DOES THIS BILL HAVE OF PASSING?

I'M VERY OPTIMISTIC. I'M A LITTLE CONCERNED WHEN IT GETS TO THE GOVERNOR'S DESK. BUT VERY OPTIMISTIC. WE HAVE QUENCH COAUTHORS. HALF OF THOSE ARE --87 COAUTHORS. HALF OF THOSE OF DEMOCRATS. AND I'VE HAD GREAT RESPONSES FROM MY DEMOCRAT COLLEAGUES. WE HAVE ASK ME, A PUBLIC UNION ON BOARD. THE HARD DRIVERS ASSOCIATION ON BOARD. WE HAVE CHAMBERS. WE HAVE RANK AND FILE. WE HAVE ALMOST 3,000 LETTERS OF SUPPORT FROM ALL WALKS OF LIFE BECAUSE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND THAT IF SOMEBODY OWES YOU MONEY, YOU SHOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY THEM.

WELL, THANK YOU VERY MUCH, ASSEMBLYMAN ANDERSON.

THANK YOU.

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