|Sierra Madre's Historic Tax Decrease|
This despite all sorts of wild and unsubstantiated claims of an impending financial apocalypse from the local chapter of the Chicken Little Party. A political faction here in town prone to unnecessary claims of doom and destruction, all while on their way to their latest big lunchtime presentation with whomever the current One Carter developer might be.
It is a rather historic event if you think about it. This is the first time ever that any taxes in Sierra Madre have actually gone down. Something that certain notable elements within the community (in particular the Police Officers Association) have had a hard time dealing with emotionally. Residents voting themselves tax cuts being anathema for those city employees who consider constantly increasing six figure compensation figures to be a right that should never ever be taken from them.
Even when those six figure city employee compensation figures are considerably more than what those paying the taxes to sustain such numbers are making.
But I digress. Cooking up yet another round of voting on the utility tax question is not what this Special Meeting of the Sierra Madre City Council is about. That could very well be coming some troublesome day, and there are a least two City Council members who dream fondly of making such a thing happen.
But this is not it. Rather it involves something called Assembly Bill 1717, which was passed on April 2nd of 2014. Here is how the website MuniServices (link) lays it out:
All of that make sense? This is also known as the Local Prepaid Mobile Telephony Services Collection Act, and what this does is allow local governments like Sierra Madre's to collect utility taxes on prepaid cell phone packages, as sold in places like Wal*Mart. Something that was beyond their reach until this bill passed in Sacramento.
In other words, it closes a loophole and increases the reach of the UUT a little. And to get in on that action Sierra Madre's City Council needs to perform a few procedural rituals and get right with AB 1717's requirements. Then they can lay their hands on that additional dough.
Which is what is expected to happen Monday evening at City Hall. It is the only item on that agenda.
Of course, if you are the owner of a prepaid cell phone package, you might not think this news is all that good. Your recourse would be to then reregister your cell phone in a no UUT city, like Monrovia. All you'd need to do that is an address.
Preserve San Marino
There is now an organization in San Marino just like the similarly named one here. I'm sure this is causing a certain lunchless and lonely California Association of Realtors political operative in Arcadia to tear out his surgically restored hair. We are more than fine with that.
The Preserve San Marino website can be accessed by clicking here.
Here are a couple of examples of why mansionization is starting to get folks in San Marino pretty upset.