Governor Gavin Newsom last week offered an $11 billion bailout to Californians struggling with soaring prices for gas, food and other goods.
State, county and local governments will receive funding to implement programs in support of the governor’s goal of making California a zero-emissions state by 2035 under the strategy.
About $9 billion will be provided by the state to reimburse $400 in direct payments to vehicle owners who register their vehicles in the state, with a cap of two reimbursements per individual. Debit card payments will be made to car owners.
In the wake of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, “we are taking immediate action to get the money straight into the pockets of Californians,” Newsom added.
There are also new funds for local biking and walking projects, as well as three months of free public transport, fast-track incentives for electric vehicles and charging stations.
Pedestrian and cyclist safety programs will receive about $500 million in funding under the plan.
Republicans pounced on Newsom’s idea as soon as it was released, calling it “out of touch,” pointing out flaws and explaining why they think theirs is superior.
Earlier this month, Republicans in the California Assembly introduced legislation that would temporarily suspend the state’s gasoline tax of 51 cents a gallon. Without any promises from gas stations that they would lower rates under legislation the Democratic caucus had overwhelmingly opposed in 40-18, Democrats voted against the bill.
Gallagher, who represents Yuba, Tehama and parts of Butte and Colusa counties, tweeted, “You can’t make this stuff up,” referring to the state’s Republican Assembly Majority Leader.
“I can’t keep up…
Is this the fifth proposal from Democrats in the House of Representatives in recent weeks? What’s the harm in saving 50 cents now? Continuing tweets from Gallagher were posted on the social media platform.
Gallagher also opined that the governor’s idea of giving California military members who may not be registered in the state a tax break for owning an electric vehicle was misguided.
The number of active duty military personnel in California is the highest in the United States.
“Corrupt politicians will always prefer ‘rebates’ to real tax breaks because it gives them control over who gets the money and when it goes,” said Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R-Rocklin).
Public funding for roads would not be affected by Republicans’ plan to “completely” cut gas taxes, according to Kiley, a Democrat who calls House Democrats a “supermajority.”
A Fox 11 Los Angeles news program that covers “the most controversial and interesting issues affecting California,” quoted Kiley: “This money would be recovered from the state’s general fund, of which we are supposed to have $45 billion, maybe as much as $60 billion in surplus right now.
Tens of millions of Californians would benefit, Newsom says, if the state Assembly and Senate approve his plan by July.
The direct assistance “is in addition to the more than $10 billion we’ve provided over the past year through the Golden State Stimulus,” Newsom said. Nearly $20 billion in direct tax relief has been provided to Californians, in total.