Ethan Explains California Proposition 58

Ethan Explains California Proposition 58

This is number 8 of 17 of the California statewide ballot initiatives in 2016 that I’ll cover. Proposition 58 is the “California Non-English Languages Allowed in Public Education Act (Senate Bill 1174.)

Education in California has its share of challenges. Making sure all children are proficient in English when they graduate high school is critical for their ability to function in our society. This includes kids whose first language is not English.

Californians approved Prop 227 back in 1998 to ensure that non-native English speaking children had full immersion to learn English. This was in response to certain districts, educators, and activists undermining or failing to teach English as a Second Language (ESL).

What we’ve found in the meantime is that the severe measures of Prop 227 are not always effective. And it has taken away local control for choosing the best methods of teaching ESL.

Proposition 58 modifies Prop 227 to allow local control and flexibility to choose what the local parents and educators deem best for their children. Most importantly, Prop 58 does NOT remove the English language proficiency requirements.

Further, Proposition 58 requires no additional or new funding.

Last, having as many bilingual or multilingual children as possible only strengthens our country, our economy, and gives us advantages on the world stage. We want to be the best, right?

I say YES to Proposition 58.

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No On Proposition 30

Do the proposed taxes increases affect you? Proposition 30 in California won’t affect my income tax, but it will my sales tax like everyone else to the tune of .25%. Federal taxes are going up in 2013 according to the budget. So why are people in California arguing that the Proposition 30 tax increase of up to 30% not going to affect wealthy people’s behavior? It doesn’t make sense.

Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times wrote a scathing article titled Would Prop. 30 really drive millionaires out of California? He argues that data doesn’t support millionaires leaving California with tax increases in the past.

I argue that California hasn’t had a 30% tax increase on top of a federal tax increase before with which to measure against.

For the sake of everyone, I have created a nice, easy to read chart of what these tax increases look like:Proposition 30 Tax chartsI know my share of wealthy people, business owners, CEOs, and others. There is something called a tipping point where frustration reaches a level where action occurs. California already has a poor economy that is not recovering well, an unemployment rate of an official 10.2%, and we want to potentially drive more business away?

Proposition 30 has many issues, such as not addressing the fundamental failure to properly fund education, dealing with the perennial pension shortfall, and the structural problem of three layers of management with the County Offices of Education. But driving more business away to other, tax friendlier states, is a terrible idea.

If you live in California, vote no on Proposition 30.