Democrats Do Not Want YOU to Know Who Has a Straw in the CARB Slushy (Edited)
08/15/2012 1 Comment
Ellen and I, with our friends George and Jo Ann, joined the “Friends for Saving California Jobs” on the West Steps of the Capital to protest the California Air Resources Board “Cap and Trade” scheme . Cap and Trade is a plan to buy and sell greenhouse gas “permits” on commodities exchanges. It’s a new multimillion-dollar “tax” on California businesses and families explained the organizers Duffy and Eisenhammer.
We heard from Republican legislators explain the cost and impact of Cap and Trade on family budgets, with an easy to follow demonstration of how free greenhouse “permits” end up costing businesses that emit greenhouse gases in California. Free permits are not free! Businesses getting free permits have to hire a CARB approved auditor to make sure they are filling out CARB’s paper work correctly . If they need more than the free permits to operate their business they have to buy them on the open market at $40 to $100 bucks a ton each. Free permits are like the free cigaretts handed out to teens at rock concerts — hookem early!
We also heard about the passage of SB 1018 that exempted CARB from the Brown Act. We heard about CARB’s incorporation of the Western Climate Initiative in Delaware which does not have open meeting laws. And, how CARB escaped an audit by the Legislature.
How CARB escaped the audit is an interesting political tale posted at the FlashReport by Katy Grimes.
The California Air Resources Board seems to be on everyone’s list of what not to do in state government. Charged with implementing AB 32, the California’s Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, CARB is under increasing scrutiny for operating as a rogue agency, appearing to be accountable to no one.
All attempts to reel in the agency have failed, including another attempt to audit its operations and finances–thanks to Democratic legislators who clearly are getting marching orders from Assembly and Senate leaders.
A Joint Legislative Audit Committee hearing on Wednesday brought CARB close to accountability with the threat of the six-month state audit. But the committee chairman, Assemblyman Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens, surprised everyone when he nixed the plan after having made the pretense that he was on board.
CARB and AB 32
In 2006, the Legislature promised that AB 32 would help clean the environment while still protecting the economy. Supportive legislators promised that utility and gasoline costs would not increase with the implementation of the climate change law.
The opposite has happened, and businesses are now being severely taxed by CARB just for doing business in California. And most business owners are up in arms over CARB’s inability to justify its fees, or even explain where the money is going.
You can read the rest of Katy’s report HERE. But this the part that interest me:
CARB’s corporate tax haven
Operations at WCI Inc., the corporation created by CARB to manage the upcoming cap and trade auctions, have been a mystery. The problem is that Western Climate Initiative Inc. was formed in Delaware. Delaware is not subject to California state open meeting or sunshine laws, leaving many questioning why CARB opted for such secrecy in a well-known tax haven state. The only reason to register the corporation in Delaware is the lack of public or legislative scrutiny on any of the meetings they may have, or actions they may take—despite that they are operating solely on behalf of a state agency.
When it became apparent that CARB’s shell game was nearly up, Democrats pulled a shiny new shell out of their bag of tricks.
Despite legislative and public outrage over the shroud of secrecy at CARB, Assembly Speaker John Perez is said to have crafted the language for the June budget trailer bill, which exempted WCI Inc. from California’s open meeting laws.
The word in the halls of the Capitol is that Perez also convinced Lara to kill Dutton’s audit request on Wednesday.
When there is a billion dollar slushy under the table, it appears to me that the Democratic Leadership does not want the tax payers to know which Democrats, Union thugs, and NGOs have straws in that slushy.