Opinion: Union pay bumps unjustifiable, especially considering CA’s $32bn deficit.

The OC Register’s Steven Greenhut places, side by side, local gov’t budget deficits and continued accommodation of union’s demands for salary increases—even when unprecedentedly high. Greenhut critiques how both Parties in CA are succumbing to union influence, rather than prioritizing sensible spending.

If you wonder why there’s never enough money and why lawmakers always look for new ways to raise taxes, then take a look at the Transparent California website, which details state and local compensation packages. For instance, I count more than 200 California Highway Patrol employees who in 2022 earned above $400,000 in total compensation, with the top earner receiving $777,000.

Like union employees’ salaries, Opp Now’s updates, analyses, and op-eds only get better by the day. Click HERE to explore our full blog.

This year, California faced a $32-billion deficit, which lawmakers closed through kick-the-can accounting gimmicks and some cuts to the climate-change spending bonanza. Public employees were spared any pain and some bargaining units received pay bumps even though there’s no guarantee we’ll soon be back in black. Gov. Gavin Newsom and Democratic supermajorities managed to avoid tough choices.

In 2012, California faced similarly sized deficits. The budget drama, coupled with news reports of struggling pension systems and outrageous pension benefits, sparked a pension-reform movement. Voters in Democratic-dominant San Jose overwhelmingly approved a pension-reform ballot measure 2012, which later was thrown out by the courts. A union-friendly state agency (the Public Employment Relations Board) and courts also derailed a 2012 reform measure in San Diego.

This article originally appeared in the Orange County Register. Read the whole thing here.

Original Opinion from Opportunity Now.