Controller Wendy Greuel and Councilwoman Janice Hahn joined the fight to get the state to stop raiding local taxes to help solve its budget mess, with the pair endorsing a California ballot initiative that would outlaw the practice.
Organizers are gathering signatures to qualify the initiative for the November ballot. "We want to make sure that we have an ironclad position where they can't steal our dollars,'' Greuel said.
Californians to Protect Local Taxpayers and Vital Services wants to collect 1.1 million signatures to qualify the amendment. While voters have already passed measures to protect local taxes from state raids, coalition leaders said legal loopholes have been exploited by Sacramento recently. The group called the raids on local tax revenue -- including dipping into local government, transit and redevelopment funds this fiscal year -- "legally questionable."
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"It's about local control,'' said Councilwoman Janice Hahn, who is running for Lt. Governor. "We are the ones that have been charged with providing police, fire, libraries, parks, trash pickup, and the state comes in and takes our dollars with no regard to how that affects us and the people we serve.'"