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Religious Dick

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SignOnSanDiego.com    
 
 
UNION-TRIBUNE EDITORIAL
Fear for the future

After Schwarzenegger, already-bad business climate may worsen

August 10, 2008

A new survey of corporate executives considering relocating their firms provides fresh reasons to worry about California's economy. The Development Counsellors International survey found CEOs ranked California dead-last in attractiveness among the 50 states because of its high taxes and business-hobbling regulations.

California's reputation is likely to grow even worse in the next few weeks when a 2008-09 state budget is finally adopted, given the probability it will raise taxes. But what is truly depressing to contemplate is what happens come January 2011, when Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger departs and is likely to be replaced by a Democrat.

We have griped about Schwarzenegger on several fronts of late. Yet at least he understands that helping business is in everyone's interest, because a healthy economy doesn't just mean good jobs but plenty of revenue for the state government.

This basic truth doesn't register with Democratic lawmakers, who recently passed bills forcing employers to offer acupuncture coverage in their health plans, micromanaging meal times for private employees, increasing regulation of medical assistants and adding new costs to managed-care programs.

Schwarzenegger vetoed all these measures on Aug. 1. Someday soon, we may have a governor inclined to go along with these assaults on business.

So our dead-last ranking among CEOs looks secure. As for state revenue, what's now a persistent headache could soon become a migraine.
 
 
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