This measure will cost taxpayers $27 billion Mon, 02 Mar 2020 06:55:46 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Fake Taxpayer Group Misleads Voters on Prop. 13 Bond Measure Mon, 02 Mar 2020 06:55:45 +0000 We’ve seen this before. Fearful that taxpayers might reject a proposed tax increase or bond, the proponents of the measure will trot out some endorsement of a fake organization with a pro-taxpayer sounding name. It is a highly deceptive tactic meant to confuse voters.

Before this campaign season began, had anyone heard of the California Republican Taxpayers Association? We doubt it. But that is the name of the group appearing on millions of “slate mailers” and which is now running radio ads throughout the state supporting the costly $15 billion school bond measure ironically labeled as Proposition 13. Employing both the “taxpayer”and “Republican” label the group clearly hopes to appeal to more conservative voters. 

The best we can tell is that CRTA was started by a political consultant working for the infamous anti-taxpayer Republican, Abel Maldonado. Not only was Maldonado notorious for voting against taxpayers when he was in the legislature, he successfully traded his state Senate vote, which was needed to pass a massive tax increase, in exchange for putting Proposition 14, the open primary law, on the ballot. 

The consultant’s firm, Capitol Consulting & Public Relations, advertises on its website to potential clients that it can “manage your entire campaign from paid media: direct mail, radio and broadcast advertising.”

There’s certainly nothing illegal about that, but misrepresenting the source of the information can cross the line into legal problems. The CRTA reportedly heard from the Republican party after it used an elephant logo on these mailers to make it appear that the group was an official Republican organization. It’s not. Today its logo is a bear.

To be clear, a professional political consultant is a paid adviser to well-funded campaigns, not by any stretch of the imagination an advocate for the interests of taxpayers. Moreover, CRTA has no lobbyists, no attorneys representing taxpayers in legal fights, does no education efforts andits “location” is a UPS mailbox. It only materializes during election season. This purported group appears to be merely a “for sale” shill existing for the sole purpose of persuading, or deceiving, voters. (As for who “bought” CRTA, one need only consider that among the largest contributors to the Prop 13 bond campaign are the California Teachers Association, trade unions looking for construction business and the California Democratic Party. There’s nothing much “taxpayer” or “Republican” reflected in the money behind this bond measure).

It is now apparent that, because legitimate taxpayer groups such as the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association have opposed the massive Proposition 13 school bond, the special interests backing the costly proposal are attempting to counter our narrative. Unfortunately, their deceptive tactics may be working. 

We received an email from a longtime member of HJTA who, after hearing our radio ad opposing this year’s Prop. 13, told us he had already mistakenly voted in favor of the costly bond measure. “I feel like a fool,” he wrote. No, he wasn’t a fool. He got scammed. Apparently, this is the only way the progressive tax and spend lobby can win.

Perhaps we at Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association take this too personally. We have worked for 41 years to establish an impeccable record of defending the interests of taxpayers and advocating for fiscal responsibility. We have two permanent offices in Sacramento and Los Angeles, three full-time lawyers who represent the interests of taxpayers in literally hundreds of tax cases against government, and a full-time lobbyist advancing the interests of taxpayers and defending the real Prop. 13 (1978) in the California Legislature.

It’s no secret that there is a lot of deception in politics. On Tuesday, voters who truly care about limiting increases in property taxes should listen to legitimate voices on behalf of taxpayers and vote NO on the Proposition 13 $15 billion bond measure. 

Jon Coupal is president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association.

]]> Commentary: Just say no to the new Proposition 13 Thu, 27 Feb 2020 05:25:00 +0000 Our state is already drowning in debt because of gross mismanagement in Sacramento. If the state can’t improve the quality of schools with the billions they’ve already been given, what will convince us that they will act any differently with an additional $15 billion?

Click here to read the article in the Los Angeles Times.

]]> HJTA LAUNCHES RADIO AD CAMPAIGN OPPOSING MARCH 3 BALLOT’S “PROPOSITION 13” Mon, 24 Feb 2020 18:00:40 +0000 The Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, the most influential taxpayer advocacy group in California, today (24) launched a statewide radio ad campaign in opposition to Proposition 13 on the March 3 ballot, a $15 billion bond for school facilities that also will raise debt limits on local school districts. The script of the ad is as follows:

This is Jon Coupal, president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, with an important message about the March 3rd election. 

There is a measure on the ballot that is numbered 13, but it has nothing to do with the famous Proposition 13 passed in 1978. THIS Proposition 13 lets the state borrow fifteen billion dollars for school construction projects. As a result, our children will be paying billions in interest costs for the next 35 years!

Just as bad, THIS Proposition 13 will raise property taxes. It will let local school districts take on nearly double the debt that current law allows. Listen carefully: this cost will be in addition to what you already pay on your property tax bill. Californians already pay some of the highest taxes in the country. Enough is enough.   

We urge you to vote NO on THIS Proposition 13. Visit us at for more information.

Paid for by No New Taxes, a Project of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association.

The ad will run in all of California’s major media markets.

Click here to listen to the ad.

]]> Endorsement: Vote no on Proposition 13 school bond measure Thu, 20 Feb 2020 17:45:01 +0000 For starters, as the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association notes, it’s hard to fathom why a state with a $7 billion surplus would float a huge school construction bond that with interest would cost taxpayers $740 million a year for 35 years — $11 billion in estimate interest over the life of the bond. And because local school districts must come up with matching funds to access these state revenues, more and more districts will resort to floating general obligation bonds that need only 55% support to pass — bonds paid off with property tax increases.

Click here to read the article in the San Diego Union Tribune.

]]> Voters should reject this proposition 13 Wed, 19 Feb 2020 06:08:54 +0000 The confusingly numbered “Proposition 13” on the March 3 statewide ballot will waste taxpayer dollars, needlessly increase the state’s debt burden, and encourage school districts to issue more debt, raising property tax bills. Voters should reject it.

Click here to read the article in EdSource.

]]> Commentary: No on Prop. 13 — school bond measure means higher property taxes for homeowners Tue, 11 Feb 2020 06:34:39 +0000 By now, most California voters have received their ballot pamphlets for next month’s election. Some may be confused to see that they are being asked to vote on “Proposition 13.” No, this proposition is not the same as the landmark Proposition 13 that was approved in 1978 and saved homeowners from being taxed out of their homes. In fact, the 2020 Proposition 13 will almost certainly do the exact opposite — lead to much higher property taxes.

Click here to read the full article in the San Diego Union Tribune.

]]> Editorial: Reject Prop. 13, California’s $15 billion school bond plan Mon, 10 Feb 2020 06:38:06 +0000 State legislators want to make more money available for needed school construction and they want to encourage transit-oriented development.

Those are laudable goals. But they shouldn’t perpetuate a system that subsidizes private developers by excusing them from fully funding classroom construction needed for their new homes; force current homeowners to pay more property taxes to make up the shortfall; and drive up construction costs by pushing local districts to use only union labor for school projects.

Click here to read the article in the Mercury News.

]]> The latest Prop. 13 is bad for taxpayers. Vote No on March 3. Mon, 03 Feb 2020 06:48:06 +0000 Instead of protecting California taxpayers, however, this $15 billion school bond threatens to significantly increase local property taxes – and embodies the opposite idea from the original Prop. 13. Specifically, it earmarks $9 billion for preschools and K-12 building modernization and $6 billion for public universities and community colleges.

Click here to read the article in the Daily News.