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Location: Redding, CA, United States

Friday, December 19, 2008

California Budget Woes

Just the other day the legislature moved a budget to the governor to sign, hopefully ending the budget crises/stalemate here in California. About 10 minutes after getting this document the governor said in a press conference that he could not sign the budget because of the tax burden it placed on the people of the state and, oh how unfair that would be.

I listened to this report and couldn't help but think about the compacts approved by the voters in November that affected the casino tribes signing the compacts and the other tribes who may want to renew or enter the compact process and how that proposition series (something like 94-98?) changed the revenue share from the casinos adding millions to the state general fund.

You know, ever since I heard the governor call for California Indian to "pay their fair share", it irritates the heck out of me to hear them now lament the burden that will be placed on the citizens of this state.

They should never have passed Prop 13 in the 1970's (a death knell to county governments that is now showing through) and the repeal of the vehicle license fee. Listen, I like having money (I don't have any but still pay taxes), I appreciate the social services that are available to folks (we don't get them because of our status as unrecognized people) but wish government leaders would stop saying that Indians (read California Native Tribal people) need to pay their share: we did; with un-ratified treaties that ceded away vast tracks of this state, with every sacred site lost to a developer or local government who refuse to discuss the impact to our living cultures and whenever the federal government tramples our Indigenous Human rights.

Again, just a thought as we move toward a new administration in DC and hopefully a paradigm shift in our state and local governments that will allow for open and truthful dialog regarding the definition of "fair".