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California State University, Dominguez Hills
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Created: November 3, 2005
Latest Update: November 3, 2005
References for Neutral Presentation of Propositions
California Special Election, November 9, 2005
- OFFICIAL VOTER INFORMATION GUIDESpecial Statewide Election, Tuesday, November 8, 2005.
- Hot Topics! Nov. 8, 2005 California Ballot Propositions Institute of Governmental Studies, U.C. Berkeley. Both Sides. Excellent guide to articles, arguments, etc.
- Directory of California State Propositions League of Women Voters. Both Sides.
- CFA'S POSITIONS ON BALLOT MEASURES California Faculty Association's Plea to Support California Schools.
- Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's Ballot Proposition Voter Guide The Republican view of Props. 74, 75, 76, and 77.
- jeanne's position and her reasons:
I have taken the titles from the OFFICIAL VOTER INFORMATION GUIDE. The opinions are my own, though prompted by those groups opposing the governor's propositions.
VOTE - The average turnout in special elections is 15%. That means that 7 1/2 % of voters can turn these propositions into law, harming our workers, our children, all of us. Don't let 7 1/2 % of California voters take away representative government with checks and balances. (The 90% of us who aren't millionaires must vote and make our voices heard, too.)
- Proposition 74: PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS. WAITING PERIOD FOR PERMANENT STATUS. DISMISSAL. INITIATIVE STATUTE. 74
This proposition would change the ease with which teachers in our public schools could be fired. The state has never collected data on how many teachers are actually fired, or on how districts evaluate teachers. The proposition would extend the present two-year probationary period to five years, during which time two "not satisfactory" evaluations would result in a teacher's dismissal without a right to a hearing and an explanation of what was considered non-satisfactory about the teacher's work. Since the state has NO criteria for evaluating teachers, nor training for principals on how to evaluate effectively, if you're evaluated by a principal who doesn't like you, you would have no recourse to ask for reconsideration by someone neutral. That means no control on a staff that favors cliques. Moreover, the present two years was the result of bargaining for which teachers gave up the right to review to reduce the probationary period to two years. We never had a period longer than three years of probation. All probationary workers are in greater jeopardy of losing their jobs, and tend to not speak out until they are past the probationary period. This proposition would "silence" new teachers for five years, discouraging those with the most enthusiasm and freshest perspectives from speaking out in favor of new methods and processes and learning strategies that might make our schools more creative and successful in helping those who find themselves in public schools depleted of resources and excellent teachers drawn by "white flight" to the suburbs and to private schools.
Also, since new teachers cost less than continuing long-term teachers, there is and incentive to make the new teachers work very hard until we have exhausted them, and then deny them permanent status to hire more cheaply new teachers, who will not receive permanent status for another five years. This is unfair to the labor force in our schools, and counterproductive to enlightened and enthusiastic teaching for our children, especially since it focuses on the teacher as "what is wrong with education." What is wrong with education is far more complex, like inadequate space, inadequate funding, inadequate equipment and material for teaching. Firing teachers with no planned and supervised evaluation can't undo the real problems our children face in their schools.
- Proposition 75: PUBLIC EMPLOYEE UNION DUES. RESTRICTIONS ON POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS. EMPLOYEE CONSENT REQUIREMENT. INITIATIVE STATUTE. 75
This proposition would prevent public employees like teachers, nurses, policemen, firemen, etc. from using the money gathered their unions have to sponsor political activity and response to actions and legislation they perceive as harmful to their professional concerns. During this special election unions have provided answering ads to all the corporate-sponsored ads the governor has aired in favor of his propositions. That would not have been possible under Proposition 75.
The governor argues that you shouldn't have to pay for political ads if you are opposed to your union's position. But we already have an opt out clause in the present law. No one's dues can be contributed to political actions if they choose not to. So this is just an attempt to confuse voters into misunderstanding current law. That's dishonest. Don't be fooled.
One argument I've heard is that corporations shouldn't have to collect the signatures of their shareholders because they belong voluntarily to the shareholder group, whereas unions are not voluntary. That is patently untrue. Shareholders have enough money to make their money work for them, and corporate leaders do not consult them on corporate contributions. Unions protect those who are working for their money, sometimes from paycheck to paycheck. This proposition would just deny workers a voice in special elections like this.
- Proposition 76: State Spending and School Funding Limits. Initiative Constitutional Amendment. 76
This proposition limits state spending on schools to earlier levels, permits the governor to not repay minimum school funding when it has been cut from a budget, permits the governor to declare a "fiscal emergency" by having his own staff's estimate of state revenues, and take control of the budget away from the legislature and away from checks and balances that are firmly embedded in our constitutional process.
This proposition would permit the government to cut salaries and contractual promises to teachers, firemen, police, nurses, state workers without legislative oversight.This proposition will have the effect of allowing the governor to make decisions without regard to us, the workers and people of this state.
- Proposition 77: REDISTRICTING. INITIATIVE CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT. 77
Redistricting is a political game to redraw the electoral district to guarantee that your party will win. Voters have already rejected many such plans. This one is no better. Voters do not have any say before the plan goes into effect, and it will cost millions each time voters reject a redistricting plan. Politicians are the ones who will select the retired judges this proposition proposes to allow to do this redistricting. There are no requirements to guarantee that all of California's voters are represented in this mix of three judges. They can all be from one area.
We are not scheduled in California to redistrict until 2011, after the census. This plan is still run by politicians, has everything backwards by denying voter approval until after plan goes into effect, and is an inappropriate way to make such constitutional changes. It's a bad plan and has cost millions to promote it. WE do need to stop jerrymandering. But this plan will not accomplish that.
- Proposition 78: DISCOUNTS ON PRESCRIPTION DRUGS. INITIATIVE STATUTE. 78
This is another proposition for which the ads are designed to confuse voters. To distract us from Proposition 79, which is the state's proposal for MANDATED drug discounts for the poor, the pharmaceutical companies spent millions to vaunt their VOLUNTARY willingness to provide discounts to those who can't pay for their drugs. Recall Wal-Mart's refusal to give their workers adequate health care benefits, but their nation-wide-wide advertising of how they spent a million dollars to provide a heart transplant for the infant some of one of their workers. One million for one worker that plays well to the press is lots cheaper that several million to provide adequate health care to all their workers. Don't believe a standard advertising ploy.
- Proposition 79: PRESCRIPTION DRUG DISCOUNTS. STATE-NEGOTIATED REBATES. INITIATIVE STATUTE. 79
This one's the real drug discount proposition. Vote for it. It will cost us. We'll have to create a state bureaucracy for running the program. But real people, poor people with ordinary everyday needs for drugs they can't afford, will get the drugs.