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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund

Smart Voter
Orange County, CA November 2, 2004 Election
Candidates Answer Questions on the Issues
Member of the State Assembly; District 70

The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California and asked of all candidates for this office.

See below for questions on Budget Crisis, Education, Water, Health Insurance

Click on a name for other candidate information.   See also more information about this contest.

1. What does California need to do to address the current budget crisis?

Answer from Chuck DeVore:

First, cut spending.

Second, improve the economy by cutting taxes, simplifying the tax code, and reducing regulations.

Third, improve efficiency by making California's procurement system more competitive (saving tax dollars).

Fourth, sell unused state assets.

Answer from Carl L. Mariz:

We need to fix the damage done when Prop 13 was originally passed in 1978. In addition to fixing a serious problem with home owners property taxes spiraling out of control, it also capped commercial property taxes which did not need fixing. If we increased commercial property taxes somewhat, we could go a long way to solving our problem of stabilizing state finances. These added funds also go to our local governments, which solves other problems. Other solutions include a temporary income tax increase on the highest tax brackets, a temporary increase in the sales tax (my least favorite solution). There was no reason for Governor Schwarzenagger to roll back the license fee, the original fees should be restored. The cost of this could be easily borne by each auto owner. Of course, we must do everything we can to eliminate waste in government and tax loopholes such as waving the sales tax on luxury yachts purchased out of state.

2. What should the state's priorities be for K-12 education? For the Community College System?

Answer from Carl L. Mariz:

We first need to provide adequate funding. Most of this funding should come from local sources. This is why fixing the long-term problem associated with Prop 13 is important. In addition, we need to maintain low teacher to pupil classroom ratios which facilitate learning, especially in the lower grades. We also need to ensure that our education dollars do not go to unnecessary administrative costs. We must take a hard look at the regulations presently imposed by the legislature and purge those which are unnecessary. This will save money.

Community colleges play a very important part in our educational system. Since Community Colleges are also funded by local taxes, we need to ensure that local tax streams are adequately maintained. We should minimize any cost increases for attending these institutions as these are the educational institutions that used most by our neediest students.

Answer from Chuck DeVore:

More money for the classroom, less for administration. How?

First, invest in new business systems and processes to bring more of the huge productivity gains seen by business in recent years into the school system.

Second, introduce two year budgeting to give local school districts more planning time and less chaos.

Third, cut unfunded mandates and earmarks from the state (Governor Schwarzenegger is already trying this and it should be encouraged).

3. What measures would you support to address California's water needs?

Answer from Carl L. Mariz:

Most important, we need to remember that much of California is desert or semi-arid and we have limited water resources, unlike much of the rest of the country.

To address our water needs, I would start with conservation. There is a great deal we can do in this area. Another step we can take is to do a better job of controlling and trapping storm water runoff. It would take too much space to address this issue in proper detail. Second, we can subject our sewage to secondary and tertiary treatment so this water can be reused. The technology exists today to accomplish this. In addition, we need to take a hard look on how state agenccies and water districts price water so we can be sure that our water resources are used in the most effective manner.

Answer from Chuck DeVore:

California needs to invest more in infrastructure. In addition, water should be handled more like a commodity. Paying market prices for water will encourage efficient use and conservation.

4. What should the Legislature be doing to address the needs of Californians without health insurance?

Answer from Carl L. Mariz:

I support SB921 which would provide health care for all Californians. Our present health care delivery system is broken and must be fixed. SB921 provides the best starting point to achieve this.

We can also support the recently passed bill by Senator Burton that requires large employers to provide health care to their employees. In addition, we can allow our California residents to purchase low-cost drugs from Canada.

Answer from Chuck DeVore:

Encourage more business growth to give workers more employer options.

Examine fundamental reasons for lack of health care: high medical and insurance costs due to the cost of litigation and fraud, low-wage jobs, lack of jobs caused by burdensome government regulations that drive business out of state.

Mandating that all businesses provide health insurance coverage will only make the California economy worse.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League. 

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily.

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Created: December 15, 2004 13:39 PST
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