When a local city agency wants to collect feedback from their citizens, they have a couple choices. They can use a completely open survey tool, which allows trolls from all over the world to generously participate. Or they can try to get citizens to verify their identity and location. A small city has few resources to implement this verification. And one citizen may not trust many separate government departments to ...more »
Reynolds v. Sims in 1964 made the huge mistake of prohibiting states from having federal-style bicameral congresses. How this could be unconstitutional when the federal government operates this way is a mystery. A true bicameral congress gives each sub-government (counties in the context of a state, states in the context of the US as a whole) an equal vote in the senate and a vote proportional to their population in ...more »
Politicians know that information is power, so they often prefer to limit public scrutiny in order to achieve more favorable outcomes for themselves and the special interest groups that support them. The California Legislature Transparency Act, which may be on the ballot this fall, counters the strong incentives facing elected officials to conceal legislative proceedings by requiring that the public have more access ...more »
While preparing my income taxes I discovered that the depreciation schedules for real estate investments are different for federal and state tax returns. Why is this? I also looked at five past tax returns and discovered that my California income tax was around 30% of my federal obligation. We could greatly simplify the California tax code by having individuals (and maybe even corporations?) file out a one page California ...more »
Using web technologies to crowdsource corrupt spending checks using invoice and receipt transparency.
In every election I've seen, politicians only come to California with their hand out and give us nothing in return. In the meantime, "battle ground" states are flooded with billions of dollars to sway their votes because of the competitive split of voters . Desperate politicians pay attention to those states and focus all their promises and money on them. Democrats take California for granted and Republicans write off ...more »
California has the largest number of Electoral College votes in the United States with 55. Like all but two states (Maine & Nebraska), CA awards its EC votes on a winner-take-all basis, nullifying the votes of MILLIONS of Californians every presidential election (exact same outcome as the popular vote). Since CA is one of the few states that has an independent commission to draw congressional districts, now is the time ...more »
This idea is geared towards people between the age 18 and 28 (currently voting less than 9% of the time) so that their voices are heard and more accurately represented in the legislative process. Non-presidential voting issues would be presented in a persons newsfeed, similar to a sponsored add on Facebook, but the voting box would have a special "Government Sponsored" tag letting users know that this was ...more »
Currently trust in the Legislature is very low and after 3 legislators were convicted of felonies and 3 others left the legislature to work for those that lobbied them, it is clear we need to demand far more of our elected officials than we have been. We need Legislators that are honest with the people of the state of California and ones that are not controlled by anyone other than the voters of the great state of California. ...more »
Public libraries should have an algorithm to recommend books to readers, especially school age students.
Twenty-one Northern California Counties have 9 state level representatives while the southern 38 counties have 111 state representatives. The Jefferson Declaration Committee has 21 Declarations and Petitions to withdraw from the state of California signed by County Boards of Supervisors. We have active committees in a total of 23 counties. This is a grass roots movement. We have no party backing, nor do we wish any. This ...more »
Based on OpenGov’s success working with over a third of California cities and counties (in part from the successful 2015 IYS challenge grant), we propose that FixCA 2016 launch a $2 million fund to help California State Agencies adopt Transparency, Budget Intelligence, and Open-Source Open Data solutions to improve accountability, efficiency, and competition statewide. California spends more than any other state government: ...more »