Assembly Republicans Vote Against Saving California's Schoolchildren, Side with Rich Oil Companies
Statement by California Labor Federation Executive Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski
“When asked to choose between closing classrooms and taxing rich oil companies, Assembly Republicans once again sided with their powerful donors, rather than California’s schoolchildren. Not surprisingly, they chose profits over pupils, parents, and public education.
“Wednesday’s Republican vote is a real threat to public education, to communities, and to the middle-class. Parents, students, teachers and working families across the state are facing larger classroom sizes, the elimination of arts and physical education classes, and a reduction in quality education.
“This 6% tax on oil companies, less than half the rate levied in Alaska, will raise nearly a billion dollars in revenues in the coming year. California’s working and middle-class families are already facing a crunch with a slowing economy and increasing foreclosures on their homes. With the state’s multi-million budget shortfall, and no new money to pay their salaries, now up to one hundred thousand hard working school employees stand to lose their jobs.
“By voting in unison against the oil severance tax for oil companies, Assembly Republicans have made their budget priorities perfectly clear. If Republicans are unwilling to tax rich companies to prevent teacher layoffs, the time has come for them to present their budget alternative.”