Hey, prosecutors: Illegal government spending is not a victimless crime



There’s not quite a bit in place to cease native governments from illegally using their taxpayer-funded assets in California to promote a proposed tax or policy measure that’s being thought-about by voters. Beneath the principles of the state Truthful Political Practices Fee, government-funded “instructional” campaigns offering details about ballot measures must supply “a good and neutral presentation of details.” However “truthful and neutral” is usually up for debate and penalties for wrongdoing are uncommon.

Political observers will keep in mind the San Diego case when a political advisor and the former president of Southwestern School have been fined $5,000 each and sentenced to 3 years’ probation in 2006 for using $5,890 in school funds to pay for a tv business promoting an $89 million bond measure that was permitted in 2000, however the statewide norm nowadays appears to be indifference.

CALmatters columnist Dan Walters just lately wrote that the FPPC has acquired 34 complaints about use of presidency assets to push for greater taxes since 2015 that in concept ought to have been completely reviewed by local and state prosecutors. Eager to supply a better firewall towards unlawful spending, the FPPC voted four-0 last month to ask the Legislature to offer it the facility to prosecute the instances that local and state prosecutors gained’t take.

That idea is value considering as a result of local governments are increasingly on the lookout for new and higher taxes with pension prices growing. But a greater strategy may be for native and state prosecutors to do their jobs. Illegal government spending isn’t a victimless crime: Government assets shouldn’t be used to influence taxpayers to boost their taxes.

Twitter: @sdutIdeas

Fb: San Diego Union-Tribune Concepts & Opinion





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