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January 22, 2004 - Presented to the Little Hoover Commission
December 30, 2003 - The value of the EZC program is quite dependent on the goals that the Legislature wishes to achieve. Available evidence generally indicates that EZ incentives have little if any impact on the creation of new economic activity or employment. On the other hand, EZ incentives do appear to be effective in increasing economic activity within smaller geographic areas—such as within metropolitan regions.
November 30, 2003 - Economic theory suggests that without some form of subsidy, overall research and development (R&D) spending in society would be lower than the economically optimal level. A strong case can be made that such a subsidy is appropriate at the federal level. However, we are not aware of economic evidence which, on balance, justifies a state credit in addition to the federal credit.
November 14, 2003 - According to our projections, the state is facing a year-end shortfall of $10.2 billion in 2004-05 assuming the vehicle license fee (VLF) rate increase remains in effect, and substantially more if the rate is rolled back and the state resumes backfill payments to localities. Over the longer term, absent corrective actions, the state faces annual current-law operating deficits that remain over $9 billion through the end of the forecast period—and $14 billion if the VLF rate is rolled back.
October 23, 2003 - The Legislature was faced with addressing an enormous two-year General Fund budget shortfall in developing the state's spending plan for 2003-04. We discuss the factors underlying this shortfall, describe the key actions taken to address it, and provide detail on the adopted budget package.
February 19, 2003 - Cigarette smuggling and related tax evasion is a current concern in California, as well as in many other states. In view of the administration's proposal to more than double cigarette excise taxes, the incentives for such evasion are likely to increase. This analysis presents options the state could take to address this issue.
February 19, 2003 - The Governor is proposing an $8.3 billion total tax increase to fund his realignment program and reduce the General Fund's budget shortfall. This proposal would raise the sales and use tax by one percentage point ($4.6 billion), establish 10 percent and 11 percent high-income tax brackets ($2.6 billion), and raise the cigarette tax by $1.10 per pack ($1.2 billion).
February 19, 2003 - California faces an unprecedented budget shortfall--roughly one-third of the General Fund budget-- due to an unexpected dramatic decline in state tax receipts combined with ongoing increases in state government costs. The Governor's budget proposal, would eliminate the while its large amount of ongoing savings would also address California's long-term structural imbalance.
February 19, 2003 - The United States and California economies continue to struggle in early 2003, due primarily to restrained hiring and investment pending by businesses. We assume that stronger economic growth will resume in the second half of 2003
February 19, 2003 - We estimate that revenues will exceed the budget forecast by a net of $1.3 billion in 2002-03 and 2003-04 combined. Our higher estimate assumes a somewhat earlier and stronger economic recovery than does the administration.
January 30, 2003 - Hearing handout presented to the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee
January 28, 2003 - The Sales and Use Tax exclusion granted through Chapter 592 is scheduled to sunset on January 1, 2004. Based on our examination of the impact of this exemption on state and local governments, we believe that a strong case can be made for removing the sunset and allowing the exclusion to continue
September 27, 2002 - In this report, we discuss the factors underlying the major fiscal challenge facing the state in 2002-03, describe the key actions taken to address the shortfall, and provide detail on the adopted budget package.