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Comments made by randps

Budget Crisis Spurs Talk of Excluding Businesses from Prop. 13 Rules

The view that the cost of businesses paying their fair share will be passed on to consumers is too simplistic. There are real advantages to doing business here, given the unique workforce, natural resources, etc. Those who argue that the property tax loophole must be maintained to keep businesses here are really just hiding behind this argument and simply want to protect corporate profits and excessive executive compensation.

All those of us on the other side of the argument want is for businesses to pay their fare share of the tax burden to pay for the essential services they enjoy. Even if we just got rid of the loophole that companies use to avoid reassessment, so that their properties would be reassessed whenever sold, just as homeowners properties are - that adjustment alone would go a long way to helping the state out of it's fiscal crisis, and save our embarrassing public school funding from sinking even lower.

March 30, 2010 at 4:47 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

envision/prop13 -- The Legacy Of Prop. 13

Dear Ms. Faryon,

You may recall that we exchanged email after I called into the radio program on Proposition 13 to raise the issue of commercial property taxes. I'm sure it comes as no surprise to you that I would find your TV program extremely disappointing.

As you know, Proposition 13 has three distinct elements that have a profound impact on State finances. Everyone knows about home owner property taxes, and most people think that is the only issue. But clearly, of late, the 2/3 provision has had the most profound impact on the State's financial crisis. Yet your program only mentioned it in passing and provided no analysis of this crucial issue.

Furthermore, you waited until the last few sentences of the program to mention commercial real estate, again with no analysis, and no mention of the fact that commercial property owners have ways of evading reassessment that are not available to home owners.

In the end, your program missed a crucial opportunity to raise the publics awareness of the full range of issues that are challenging our state. I am left wondering what motivated these editorial choices.


Rand Steiger

March 30, 2010 at 4:40 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Health Care Debate Reaches A Climax

our show plays a really important role in our media landscape, and I'm very grateful to you and to KPBS for that. It is always illuminating to hear what the people in our local media know and are thinking.

I have to say that today's show was extremely discouraging to hear. The media coverage of the healthcare debate has been abysmal, and your show today reinforced that for me. I thought it was a scandal that none of you had looked at the reconciliation bill, or even read the executive summary or the extensive analysis available on various blogs. I am not a journalist, and even I have read more and know more on the subject then you and your panelists do, and this is the way you earn your living, and this is the most important issue in recent memory.

Going on to the nature of the discussion - there were so many errors, or uninformed generalities from your panelists that I finally had to turn the show off because it was so aggravating. It seems that, like many journalists, your panelists were simply stating opinions based on what they read from other journalists, and not from real informed analysis of primary sources, which is what you are all paid to do.

Even worse, the panelist named Ken seemed to be just reading Republican Party talking points, uncritically stating them as fact. And no one on your panel was challenging these in a substantial way. The entire media today has descended to this point where instead of analyzing facts, and providing us with real information, opinions are presented as fact, and representatives of both mainstream political parties present there spin, as fact, and the media is not looking critically at this and pointing out who is wrong and who is right on a factual basis. This is so discouraging, and your show today just continued down that path.

If journalists are not going to prepare and study the facts (like read the bill!!!) and just repeat talking points and uniformed opinions, then you should broaden your panels with real experts from academia so that at least someone could try to speak the truth, and correct the record. Otherwise, what is the point of having the show. We don't need more uniformed opinions and perceptions, we need solid information, and on that front, your show today was sorely lacking.

March 19, 2010 at 9:56 a.m. ( | suggest removal )