Proposition 30's passage last month may have done more than just raise taxes. The PPIC poll suggests it might have shifted the opinions of Californians as well. Forty-four percent say they now believe the state is moving in the right direction. That's up five percent from October and the highest it's been in more than five years. Meanwhile, just under half of all adults - and independent voters - say they're more optimistic about the state budget now that Prop 30's been approved.
Californians are also giving stronger marks to their elected officials. Governor Jerry Brown's approval rating is now at a record high 48 percent. And even the much-maligned state legislature is faring better: Its 34 percent approval rating is up six points from October. The last time it topped 30 percent was 2008.
State Moves Forward with Fire Fee Despite Lawsuit
California's controversial "fire protection fee" on rural property owners is now one step closer to full implementation.
A state board voted Wednesday to make the 150-dollar-a-parcel fee permanent. That's in spite of a pending lawsuit filed by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association challenging the fee's legality.
Republican Assemblyman Dan Logue says Wednesday's action by Governor Jerry Brown's administration makes no sense.
Logue: "The courts are gonna make
a decision on this and they're gonna throw it out. So the
best thing they can do is stand down, reverse their votes and let
the courts make this decision before they start or continue to make
this a permanent tax."
The Democratic-controlled legislature passed the fire fee as part of last year's budget package with a majority vote. Republicans say that violates voter-approved Proposition 26, which requires a two-thirds approval on fees.
The state has already started mailing out bills. The court hearing is expected sometime next year.