Thursday, April 7, 2011

What Can California Learn from Texas?

According to the San Jose Mercury News, a group of Republican lawmakers is heading to Texas with Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom to talk with businesses who left California to try their luck in Texas. As Assemblyman Dan Logue put it, "We want to sit down with these businesses that could not stay in our state and find out why they left, what caused them to pick up their family, their roots, and move to another state in order to compete, in order to grow their businesses."

We believe we can help out with the fact-finding here. In no particular order, some reasons why businesses might have relocated from California to Texas:

1. In California, one of the government's functions is to travel to other states to find out why businesses fled there.

2. Texas doesn't have anything like CEQA, and it doesn't stand to have anything like AB32 either.

3. In California, frivolous legal action is one of the most lucrative career paths you can choose.

4. There's something to be said for eating a really good steak.

5. Texas has no individual or corporate income tax. California's individual income tax tops out at 10.3%, and its corporate income tax rate of 8.84% is the highest in the Western U.S. California also has the highest minimum sales tax rate in the nation.

6. Texas responds to budget crises with cuts, not tax increases.

7. California's cost of living is brutal, whereas Texas is one of the most affordable states around.

8. The real estate market didn't collapse in Texas.

9. Unfunded public pension liabilities total around $42 billion in Texas, as opposed to California's $500 billion shortfall.


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