“As we approach the turn of the century, we are facing economic and social challenges which stem from global competitiveness and from the evolution of society. Our government must be efficient, agile, and decisive in order to deal with these challenges. Politics as usual is not good enough. First and foremost, state government must work in partnership with local government and the private sector in order to meet the challenges
effectively” – Ted Laliotis
Regional Economic Competitiveness
We must re-gain and maintain the economic competitiveness of our region by establishing “pro-economy” tax and fiscal structures. Government must act as a resource and a partner to businesses rather than an obstacle. A strong economy will guarantee an abundance of well-paying jobs. In turn, well-paying jobs strengthen the family fabric, improve quality of life, and reduce social problems.
- Reduce government inefficiency and bureaucracy.
- Support legislation to discourage frivolous lawsuits and to encourage limits on cash damages in lawsuits against businesses and professional product liability or malpractice.
- Reduce the cost of business fees and streamline government procedures required of businesses.
- Provide incentives for new business startups.
- Increase state funds for improving the state’s transportation system, including major roadways, railways, public transit, and airports.
- Provide tax credits and other financial incentives for expanding, start-up or businesses relocating to California.
- Reduce state government regulations on the private sector.
- Increase incentives and programs to retrain unemployed workers.
- Create tax incentives for first-time home buyers.
- Support and enhance R&D Tax Credit.
- Promote full sales tax exemption on R&D and manufacturing performed in California.
Our schools are not achieving the highest goals in producing well-educated young adults that can meet the needs of today’s businesses. In many cases, the schools are stifled by our own government’s counter-productive regulations and antiquated mandates.
- Simplify the state educational code.
- Eliminate restrictive and unfunded state mandates.
- Return control to local school districts when possible.
- Promote more innovation, new technology, and creativity in the classroom – build High Tech Classrooms.
- Emphasize accountability in schools and teachers by rewarding success.
- Encourage parental involvement and choice in public schools.
- Push for a more comprehensive and updated curriculum.
- Encourage private or corporate investment in certain public school programs.
- Support merit pay for teachers.
- Reduce class sizes.
- Encourage the creation of more charter schools which give local districts the right to develop their own standards and curriculum, as long as they meet basic state standards.
- Require teachers to pass tough proficiency exams.
- Increase state funds for school security.
- Ensure “zero tolerance” for those who sell drugs on or near schools.
- Require higher academic standards.
- Ensure that the highest quality of care is delivered regardless of how health care is financed.
- Protect the sanctity of the doctor-patient relationship which must be the basis for therapy.
- Ensure that medical treatment decisions are made by physicians and not by administrators.
- Expand state funding for pre-natal and infant care programs, including immunizations.
- Limit the amount of damages that can be awarded in medical malpractice lawsuits.
- Allow otherwise uninsured families and the self-employed to deduct health insurance premium costs from their taxable income.
- Enact legislation to allow citizens and small employers to pool their health insurance purchasing power.
- Provide tax incentives to assist small businesses in providing health care to their employees.
Eliminate all the antiquated existing mandates and re-allocate all revenues so as to meet our current priorities in improving schools; public safety; protection of the environment; transportation needs, and re-gaining the business competitive edge.
- Remove counter-productive state mandates.
- Establish, assess, and prioritize state goals on an annual basis.
- Push for allocation of funds annually according to prioritized needs (zero-base budgeting).
- Insure that funding mechanisms and money accompany state mandated local programs. Establish a “No Money, No Mandate Policy”.
- Support “Seamless” regulatory systems and policies.
- Reduce bureaucracy and increase local control and flexibility.
- Enact the recommendations of the California Constitution Revision Commission.
Public safety is a fundamental function of government. We must ensure that our families and our children are safe in our homes, at our schools, and on our streets. Our government should provide adequate resources for well-run public safety.
- Provide for adequate prison facilities to keep violent crime offenders behind bars.
- Hire more law enforcement officers for the streets.
- Support Crime Victims Rights.
- Support “truth in sentencing” for violent criminals so they serve their full sentences.
- Expand the use of the death penalty for additional circumstances relating to murder.
- Implement penalties other than incarceration for certain non-violent offenses
- Require mandatory life sentences for third-time, violent felons.
- Inform communities when a convicted sex offender move into the community.
- Strengthen penalties and sentences associated with drug-related crimes.
- Require affluent prisoners to pay the cost of their incarceration in state prison.
- Support laws requiring restitution to victims of violent crime at the personal expense of the criminal.
- Ensure dangerous sexual predators and repeat sexual molesters are kept off the streets.
- Increase state funding for community centers and other social agencies in areas with at-risk youth.
- Increase funding for community programs that focus on preventing youth from joining gangs.
- Prosecute juveniles who commit murder or other serious violent crimes as adults.
- Introduce legislation that increase the ability of local law enforcement agencies to prosecute the theft of company trade secret information.
With the high penetration of the Internet in homes and businesses and the deregulation of communications and utilities, a sea of change is fast upon us in the ways we communicate, the ways we do business, the ways we are educated, and the ways we are entertained. This sea of change requires insightful legislation in order to achieve the most effective and beneficial utilization of high technology by our society. The business revolution on the Internet is comparable to the industrial revolution of the previous century. It must be mentored carefully and not stifled by over-regulation.
- Create professional standards and legislation to facilitate doing business on the Internet.
- Encourage the information highway industry to provide self-regulation rather than provoke government censorship.
- Assure free electronic access to publicly available government information.
- Encourage community and civic networking.
- Encourage industry and government networking.
- Protect consumers as communications and utilities get deregulated.
It is important to address environmental needs and growth needs in ways that do not constantly view one as the enemy of the other. In order to maintain competitiveness and financial strength, we must accommodate growth in ways that also guarantee a well-protected environment.
- Coordinate land use and transportation in accommodating growth.
- Enact conservation laws that encourage recycling, and waste planning.
- Enact programs that punish polluters and reward good environmental practices.
- Strictly enforce toxic dumping laws and increase penalties for offenders.
- Allocate more funds for toxic cleanup.
- Provide funding for recycling programs in California.
- Streamline environmental regulations to create one stop permitting and clear non-conflicting guidelines.
- Provide state funds for incentive programs that reward farmers for conserving soil and using minimal fertilizers and pesticides.
- Support consolidation of existing regional agencies, such as councils of governments, regional transportation organizations and regional air boards to achieve better/more integrated regional planning and processes.
- Promote clean Air Quality Standards, create incentives for business and individuals to reach those standards.
- Ensure California’s drinking water standards remain the highest in the country.
- Support a no net loss policy for California’s wetlands.
- Support the preservation of open space areas.
- Support legislation harmonizing State and Federal environmental regulations.
- Expand rideshare credits to carpooling and telecommuting
61 Doud Drive, Los Altos, California 94022
Phone 415.941.1752 * Fax 415.941.6721