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Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: California | Education & Student Activism | Government & Elections
CA NOW Opposes Prop30: "Proposition30 is a doubling down on the school-to-prison pipeline"
Proposition 30 supporting by Governor Brown, many corporations and the unions is a "doubling down on the school-to-prison pipeline".
CA NOW Opposes Prop 30: "Proposition 30 is a doubling down on the school-to-prison pipeline"
CA PROP 30
The main argument that proponents of Prop 30 are making is that if it is not passed, mandatory trigger cuts will go into effect, destroying public education because there will be no money to fund schools. So why wouldn't we be on board telling our members that they MUST vote YES?
Well, to begin with, the trigger cuts are NOT mandatory and funding for schools - particularly community colleges, Cal states and the UC system - will still be there even if Prop 30 doesn't pass. The first pot of money comes from Prop 39 (polling is off the charts and will pass). The other is Prop 38 which not only gives more money to k-12 and early education but actually delivers more funding to the General Fund than Prop 30.
There is too much at stake to pretend that Prop 30 is just about school funding and closing the budget gap. The truth is - Proposition 30 is about constitutionalizing the 2011 Public Safety Realignment. That means the $6.2 billion allocated for the 2011 Public Safety Realignment will be permanently allocated leaving a $6.2 billion budget hole when the taxes expire. The Public Safety Realignment is bad policy. A prison relocation program that permanently removes the $6.2 billion from the general fund and equally, if not more importantly, authorizes between $7-20 billion in local prison construction bonds that state tax payers will be forced to pay if counties and cities cannot.
Proposition 30 is a doubling down on the school-to-prison pipeline, with potentially generations of children lost while the Corrections Corporation of America profits (a funder of Prop 30). Cities and Counties over the past year have been opting to borrow money to build new jails. That debt is paid for by generating income from housing prisoners. The 2011 Public Safety Realignment sets up economic incentives to increase the number of prisoners – that means increasing prison spending rather than reducing prison spending.
It is true that if Prop 30 passes, the $6 billion taken from the general fund for the 2011 Public Safety Realignment will be "returned" to public schools, community colleges and universities. Taking the money originally was a way of holding hostage education funding to force women to vote YES on prop 30. As the Legislative Accounting Office has shown, after the tax increases end, there will be a $6 billion hole in the General Fund.
Prop 38 not only provides $136.9 billion for k-12 and early education compared to $17 billion under Prop 30 but Prop 38 provides $27.4 billion to the State Budget compared to $22.5 billion under Prop. 30. In addition, Prop 38 does not add the $7-20 plus billion in bond debt for unnecessary prison construction that are authorized by the 2011 Public Safety Realignment.
When you work as closely as we do in Sacramento, you learn very quickly that money plays an important role in outcomes. The healthcare industry has invested almost $3 million in this initiative (30) with the prison industry kicking in $400,000 and the beverage industry giving over $1 million.