Welcome to the Central Solano Citizen/Taxpayer Group (CSCTG)!
The purpose of the CSCTG is to establish a volunteer, politically non-partisan, organization of citizen taxpayers in Central Solano County. CSCTG is located in the City of Fairfield, CA.
The organization has two main objectives:
✰ Reducing the burden of taxes
✰ Advocating open and efficient government
This website thetaxwatchers.org and facebook page The Tax Watchers are used to keep the public informed of our activities, provide useful information and links to internet sites/sources that may help citizens/taxpayers stay informed. View the facebook posts on the right side of this page.
The majority of our activities involve attending local government meetings and report on items that are of interest to the tax payers. We also take advantage of the public comments time in these meetings to make our opinions known. We are unable to attend all meetings in the area and use links to newspaper articles and other internet sources to provide news of interest to the public. We also write letters to the editor, opinion pieces and commentaries for local newspapers. During elecrions we research ballot measures and write arguements for or against them in the voter guides.
Recent local government meetings and links with more details.
Solano Board of Supervisors schedules special meeting on RM 3 ballot placement – Daily Republic Story by Todd Hansen 2.18.2018
San Francisco Bay Area Restoration Authority. – Website and Measure AA info
Solano County Board of Supervisors – Agendas, Minutes, Videos of Recent Meetings
More Articles and Reports of Interest – Solano Board of Supervisors not pleased with County Fair Budget Report.
Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District / Citizens’ Oversite Committee for Measures C and J – Agendas & Meeting Dates
Brief report of Jan 22, 2018 meeting attended by CSCTG member Barbara Pisching at our CSCTG meeting Feb 9th, 2018.
The 2016-2017 Measure J Performance Audit will be available to the public on March 12, 2018.
There are four lease-leaseback construction projects to be completed this year:
1. Oakbrook Elementary – modernization and new administration building @ $8 millio
2. Public Safety Academy – new library and gym @ $22 million.
3. Suisun Valley K-8 – new library and gym @ $8 million, in addition to the new parking lot which was completed for $2.5 million.
4. Tolenas Elementary – modernize for security @ $3 million.
FSUSD Facilities Manager reported that the current commercial construction cost for public buildings is at $600 per square foot.
Lighting upgrades at Armijo and Fairfield High Schools are in progress and being paid as Prop. 39 projects.
Funding for future maintenance of Measure J buildings projects will be paid from an increased annual maintenance budget (Fund 14).
The CBOC will prepare within the next few months their annual report on Measure J spending after review of the Performance Audit.
End of report, Official Minutes of the meeting will be posted soon.
CA Gas Tax – CA SB 1 Transportation Funding; the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017
The CSCTG Tax Watchers are joining other groups in protesting this increase by attempting to get this legislation repealed in the 2018 Elections. Here are a few links to articles that may be of interest. HJTA – Gas Tax Increase With Novacaine
This article by Dan Walters on the CALmatters.org website shows the type of misleading information that is sometimes found in the titles of ballot measures at all levels of government.
Distorting ballot measure title undermines electoral system.
The Tax Watchers column Fairfield Daily Republic Dec 11, 2017 CA SB-1
Tax Watchers – The Hard Facts of California’s New Gas Tax By Carla Nelson
While handing out candy last Halloween, two young boys came trick or treating. One was wearing a suit with neatly combed hair and no mask. He held out a large hat lined in fake dollar bills. He said nothing. His companion who was dressed in a traditional costume spoke for him saying, “He is here for your money, but candy will do!” Oh! I exclaimed, he must be Jerry Brown!
Just like our trick or treating little friend, Jerry thinks he need only present a top hat for us to fill with money. His newest trick? SB-1, otherwise known as the Gas Tax bill.
At first glance, the average consumer may not even be aware of the new taxes since the price of gas advertised at the pump doesn’t explain the tax, but only reflects the total cost of fuel per gallon. Here is what is hidden from the consumer and the true cost of fuel in California according to Ronald Stein of Fox and Hound.
Gasoline Excise Taxes and Fees
Federal Fuel Tax 0.18
State Fuel Tax 0.42
State UG Tank Fee 0.02
Sales tax 0.09
Climate Change and Renewable Fuel costsCost of Renewable Fuels standard 0.07
Cost to fuel of LCFS 0.04
Cost to fuel of Cap and Trade 0.11
– Total taxes and fees $0.93
Diesel Excise Taxes and Fees
Federal Fuel Tax 0.24
State Fuel Tax 0.36State
UG Tank Fee 0.02Sales tax 0.09
Climate Change and Renewable Fuel costs Cost of Renewable Fuels standard 0.07
Cost to fuel LCFS 0.02
Cost to Fuel of Cap and Trade 0.14
– Total taxes and fees $1.11
About one third of the price of gasoline and diesel is attributed to taxes alone!
Other new charges include an additional $25-$175 vehicle registration fee, depending on the value of one’s automobile. Electric car owners will pay a flat fee of $100.
Although most of this outrageously gotten tax money does go for road repair and maintenance, almost one third goes to non-road related projects. 700 million is allocated for bus and light rail, 400 million to maintain and repair bridges (makes me wonder where our bridge tolls go), 100 million to bike and foot paths, 7 million to research and education, 5 million to workforce development and so on.
Property owners also help pay for capital and operating expenditures for highways, mass transit and airports. Twenty percent of their property tax bill goes to the county general fund for these expenses. If state and local governments could learn to budget wisely, it would not be necessary to place the tax burden on the shoulders of the people.
What can citizens do? There are two initiatives which are now in the signature-gathering stage. One repeals the recent gas tax legislation. The other is a Constitutional Amendment which requires any future raises in fuel tax and vehicle registration fees to be approved by the electorate as well as repealing the SB-1 gas tax. The two are not conflicting and both can be voted on if printed on the ballot. SB-1 is a bad law which hurts everyone, especially low-income families and commuters. Please help Californians to reverse this law by signing both petitions. Not only will I be signing the petitions, I will also be gathering them.
The Gas Tax Repeal Petition forms may be found at http:act.reformclifornia.org/gas-taxpetition.pdf.
Carla Nelson Fairfield, Ca
Central Solano Citizen’s/Taxpayer Group
Coming Soon to a ballot near you!
November 2018 will be here before you know it and we will be keeping our eyes open for proposed legislation that will be of interest and concern to the people paying the bills; you and me! Stay tuned – more to come.
Several CA Measures are already being proposed; here is a listing of them. Most will not ever get enough signatures to be placed on the ballot but you can probably get a feel for one’s that might get a chance. – Initiatives and Referenda Cleared for Circulation
Propositon 13 – All Tax Watchers need to be vigilant for the near constant attacks on this legislation since it was passed June 6th, 1978. A good place to check it the Howard Jarvis Taxpayer Association. – Major Threats to Prop 13
This is not really a breaking story, more like a tidal wave that is about to hit.
“Stopping the Runaway Pension Train” BY CAROLYN COLEMAN – Runaway Pension Train
Some projects don’t end – such as Monitoring How Effectively Tax/Bond Money Is Being Spent.
Union Sponsored Project Labor Agreements (P.L.A.’s) – The unions are pushing project labor agreements on many projects which increase project and labor costs due to many union work rule limitations, decreased competition, which further drive up the costs to the taxpayers on taxpayer paid projects. The Central Solano Citizen/Taxpayer Group opposes Project Labor Agreements and urges government agencies to avoid such costly and burdensome constraints on their projects.
THE TRUTH ABOUT PLAs
TheTruthAboutPLAs is a project of Associated Builders and Contractors designed to track and disseminate news and relevant information about the detrimental effects of government-mandated project labor agreements (PLAs). PLAs are costly and discriminatory pre-hire construction agreements that effectively restrict qualified merit shop contractors and their skilled employees from bidding and working on construction projects. – TheTruthAboutPLAs.com
Citizen Bond Oversight Committees (CBOC)
Government at all levels are find it easier to fund projects with 30 to 40 year bonds for major expenses. This effectively doubles the cost of any project. In order to get these bonds passed citizens must pass these Bond Measures by a 2/3 majority. The requirement drops to 51% if the measure includes having a Citizen Bond Oversight Committee to oversee that the funds are being spent as stated in the measure was voted on. This sounds good but sometimes turns out to be little more than “window dressing” used to get the money.
California League of Bond Oversight Committees (CaLBOC)
Operational Guidelines for Bond Oversight Committees – CaLBOC Guidelines
We have more stories for Tax Watchers than we could ever hope to fit on this website. Plenty of good reading on our facebook page! Facebook – TheTaxWatchers