With recall looming, Gavin Newsom touts rent forgiveness plan ‘on scale never seen before in US’

With a looming recall election to weather, likely sometime in the fall, California Gov. Gavin Newson is touting a rent forgiveness plan “on a scale never seen before in the United States.”

This coming after the embattled Democratic governor announced the “Golden State Stimulus” back in January, which will provide $600 “rapid cash support” directly to roughly four million low-income Californians. And if that’s not enough free stuff, he’s also proposing to spend $2 billion to pay for unpaid water and electricity bills.

Even the New York Times is caught up in the excitement of the cash giveaway, even though the paper bemoans the “slow, bureaucratic process” of government when it comes to giving away so much free money.

“Swimming in cash from an unexpected budget surplus and federal stimulus money, California is planning rent forgiveness on a scale never seen before in the United States,” the Times reported.

This being the article Newson was only too happy to broadcast:

The state enjoys a “staggering” $75.7 billion budget surplus, and this doesn’t take into consideration the $26.6 billion California received from the federal government in the last coronavirus relief package passed in March, according to the San Francisco Chronicle

Keep in mind that as of 2020, California had the third-highest debt of any state with $362.8 billion in total liabilities and $301.1 billion in total assets, resulting in a $55.9 billion net debt, according to Forbes.

With every vote critical and plenty of surplus money, Newsom is looking to pay the rent and utility bills for many residents, and is even proposing a stimulus payout to middle-income Californians.

More from the Times:

A $5.2 billion program in final negotiations at the State Legislature would pay 100 percent of unpaid rent that lower-income Californians incurred during the pandemic and would be financed entirely by federal money. The state is also proposing to set aside $2 billion to pay for unpaid water and electricity bills.

When California became the first state to shut down its economy last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom predicted dire shortfalls in the state’s budget. But a year later, the state finds itself with so much money that it is poised to not only cover 100 percent of unpaid rent for low-income tenants, but also to give an additional $12 billion back to taxpayers, by sending state stimulus checks of at least $600 to millions of middle-class Californians.

 

And the freebies don’t stop there, as the governor proposed a $100 billion recovery package “that pours money into everything from the most expensive education bill in the state’s history, to billions of dollars to buy hotels and apartments for the homeless and a program to forgive traffic violation fines for low-income residents,” the paper reported.

As the article noted, California placed some 35,000 homeless people into hotels, and Newsom has proposed spending $12 billion on homelessness, including $7 billion to buy motels and apartments to convert them into shelters. Another $1.75 billion is earmarked to build affordable housing.

One of Newson’s challengers in the upcoming recall election, Kevin Faulconer, the former mayor of San Diego, called the governors’ plan a “one-time gimmick.”

“One-time gimmicks are no substitute for permanent tax relief,” the Republican said. “California is unaffordable for middle-class families, that’s why they’re leaving our state en masse.”

But Democrats equate direct money payouts to votes — which explains why House Speaker Nancy Pelosi dragged her feet when former President Donald Trump was in office, and why President Joe Biden is now pushing for direct monthly payments to working families.

The American Rescue Plan increased Child Tax Credits and for the first time, people will receive these credits in monthly payments. For every child 6-17 years old, families will get $250 each month, and for every child under 6 years old, families will get $300 each month. Families making up to $150,000 will get full credit, as will single parents earning up to $112,500.

Tom Tillison

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