This is a particularly timely editorial from the San Diego Union-Tribune that outlines recent efforts - supported by public unions - that would go much further than simply plugging the loophole in Prop 13 that has allowed commercial property owners to avoid higher taxes.
As the editorial states, Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, backers of Prop 13, recognized the loophole and backed reform legislation to close it.
This effort failed in the legislature. The question is: Was this done to promote a "split roll" bill - which is hugely supported by public employee unions?
If approved, the "split roll" bill would preserve Prop 13 protection for homeowners but end it for commercial properties. If enough signatures are gathered, this initiative will be on the November 2018 ballot.
If successful, the split roll bill would greatly affect commercial properties such as hotels, shopping centers, warehouses and factories and - in turn - ordinary taxpayers through increased costs.
It is yet another scheme to avoid pension reform.
Speaking of reform, while sifting through interesting articles this morning, I came across a column by Ed Mendel of CalPensions which discusses State Senator Steve Glazer's bill to shift new public employees to 401 (k) plans: https://calpensions.com/2018/04/09/calpers-may-join-union-foes-of-401k-option/
In his column, Ed Mendel uses a quote made by Gov. Jerry Brown in 2011:
“As a matter of fact when I read the PERS analysis they say if you close the system of defined benefit (pensions) and don’t let any more people in, then the system would become shaky,” Brown told a legislative hearing in 2011.
“Well, that tells you you’ve got a Ponzi scheme,” the governor said.
“Because if you have to keep bringing in new members then the current system itself is not in a sustainable position,” he said. “So I don’t accept that, and we don’t need to close it off, anyway. But we do have to make sure that this system is sustainable over the long term.”
I think that about says it all.