Sacramento Community College Advocates Ask for Yes Vote on Prop 55 to Help Students Thrive

As Election Day draws closer, Assemblymember Kevin McCarty, local professors, students and other education advocates held a press conference today at Sacramento City College, highlighting the local support for Proposition 55, which will prevent nearly $4 billion in funding cuts to education. Proposition 55 maintains the current income tax rates on the wealthiest Californians in order to protect public education and other vital services, like children’s health care, from cuts.

Absentee ballots have now been mailed out, and the speakers at the press conference encouraged those who vote by mail to return their ballot as soon as possible. The speakers added that whether you vote by mail, or vote at the polls on Election Day, what matters is that you find Prop 55 on the ballot and vote yes.

“We know if we want to invest in our future, we need to invest in our kids. And that is exactly what Proposition 55 does. It keeps us from going back to the days of teacher lay-offs and larger class sizes that hurt our students,” said Assemblymember Kevin McCarty (D-Sacramento).

“Budget cuts hurt our ability to provide the best education for our students. Competing in a global marketplace means elevating opportunities for students to succeed throughout their academic endeavors. Community College serves as a launch pad. Prop 55 is the fuel that will help our campuses propel students forward,” said Dean Murakami, President Los Rios College Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO, CFT

“Every student deserves high quality public education. Prop 55 will ensure that we don't go back to deep cuts that hurt our kids chances to succeed in school,” said Mai Vang Sacramento Unified School Board Member-elect

In addition to these local supporters and organizations, the large and growing coalition supporting Prop. 55 includes the California Federation of Teachers, California Teachers Association, California School Employees Association, California State PTA, California Medical Association, California Labor Federation, Health Access California, League of Women Voters, Children’s Defense Fund, and Children’s Hospital Association, as well as numerous elected officials and dozens of schools boards across the state.

Proposition 55, the California Children’s Education and Health Care Protection Act of 2016, is not a tax increase, it simply maintains the current income tax rates on the wealthiest Californians for 12 more years – singles earning more than $250,000 and couples earning more than $500,000 a year. Prop 55 directs funds specifically to K-12 public education and community colleges, while also allocating funds to health care for low-income children and their families. The proposition contains strict accountability requirements.

Budget forecasts show that unless we extend the current taxes on the wealthy, which would continue to bring in an average of $8 billion in annual revenues, our public schools will lose nearly $4 billion and our state budget will face a deficit of more than $4 billion in the first full year alone.