Initiative filed to repeal California gas tax increase
California’s new gas tax hike to pay for road maintenance backed by Gov. Jerry Brown and Democrats could be placed on the ballot to ask voters to approve or repeal the new taxes. Travis Allen, a Republican Assemblymember from Orange County, has filed the 2018 ballot measure to eliminate the $5.2 billion annual tax package. Allen must gather 365,880 signatures from registered voters to qualify for the ballot but must first await a title and summary for the repeal from the state attorney general’s office.
House Republicans narrowly passed a controversial bill to overhaul the nation’s health-care system on Thursday, claiming a major victory even as the measure faces an uncertain fate in the closely divided Senate. The bill makes significant changes to the Affordable Care Act but does not repeal all of it. The bill passed without an analysis from the Congressional Budget Office which would have detailed its cost and impact on insurance coverage. The vote was an important win for Speaker Paul Ryan, who has spent years trying to dismantle Obamacare but has struggled to unite an ideologically divided caucus. The bill now heads to the Senate, where Republicans have a narrow majority and plan to craft alternative legislation.
Republicans are balking over President Trump’s openness to raising the federal gas tax to help pay for U.S. roads and highways – a politically fraught issue that lawmakers have long avoided. Trump made waves earlier this week when he told Bloomberg News that he would “certainly consider” hiking the gas tax to help pay for transportation projects. His comments earned rare praise from the New York Times editorial board. Federal gas taxes have not been raised since 1993.
Politico Magazine conducted an in-depth study of the dramatic changes in the media landscape, as the rise of Internet news publications has concentrated journalist jobs in coastal cities like New York, Washington, and San Francisco while traditional print media in cities across the country have dramatically declined. Journalism has traditionally been local, with industry-selective reporting skewing towards publications located in industry centers – the best automotive reporting came from Detroit, the best financial news from New York, etc. Today, Internet media is largely divorced from local coverage which was previously funded by local advertisers. The result is concern and worry that the media is far more sheltered and isolated from the vast interior of the United States and the people who live there, than it once was.
California Squashes Its Young
Joel Kotkin and Wendell Cox criticize that lack of upward mobility in California, which punishes hardworking young people who are unable to accrue wealth like their parents did due to the exorbitant costs of living in the Golden State. The article summarizes a new report on young people in California, a state where home ownership for people 25 to 34 is the third-lowest in the nation. In San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego, the 25-to-34 homeownership rates range from 19.6 percent to 22.6 percent – 40 percent below the national average.