Peter Coe Verbica
Editor’s note: Peter Coe Verbica is a candidate for District 2 of the Board of Equalization. The district includes Santa Barbara County.
Cowabunga! Thanks to voters like you, the Peter Coe Verbica for Board of Equalization Campaign surfs the Red Wave and advances to the Nov. 8 general election. We view this as an enthusiastic confirmation, ocean spray if you will, that Californians crave a commonsense candidate endorsed by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association PAC.
Everyone loves an underdog story, and we’ve got one for you that roars straight up the gold-bricked road to Sacramento — rattles the iron gates and hammers a proclamation on the Capitol’s front door. Despite being mischaracterized as no more than a “sacrificial lamb” and defying the odds, we beat another primary candidate (none other than Gov. Gavin Newsom’s appointee when his highness vacated the supervisory board in San Francisco).
The message? Californians are punching back, getting rid of soft-on-crime district attorneys, overturning radical school boards and seeking to recall mayors who refuse to clean up needle-infested parks and beaches. Californians are tired of billion-dollar boondoggles such as a “high speed” train to nowhere and a lack of voter-approved spending on as dams to store water in case of droughts. Californians want better management of fire roads on public property and better investment in firefighting resources.
I now face an opponent in the Nov. 8 election who has had a history of hostility to Proposition 13. She proudly speaks of endorsing the job-killing Split Roll Initiative (which would have dramatically driven up consumer prices and rent paid by florists, nail salons, family-owned restaurants, and other small businesses).
In addition, our opponent was endorsed by the Democratic Socialists, an extremist group that reportedly advocates for the end of property ownership and wants all ruled by centralized government policies. In other words, the old Marxist outcome of equal poverty for all. Millions of Californians have a chance to change the outcome at the ballot box.
What is the Board of Equalization? Why is the governor’s office trying to close it? Why should it remain?
The BOE is part of the Franchise Tax Board and has an active role in overseeing county tax assessors. Under former Gov. Jerry Brown, much of the BOE was pillaged and brought under the bootheel of the governor’s office. No doubt Gov. Newsom would love to snatch the rest of the BOE as well. (There’s nothing sweeter than the smell of other people’s money for Sacramento politicians.)
Closing the BOE is a bad idea because it lowers accountability and, most importantly, shutters the BOE’s Taxpayers’ Rights Advocate Office. The office provides a vital and all too rare venue for aggrieved taxpayers.
What qualifications do I have? Trained in business, real estate, law and as a certified financial planner, I bring extensive professional experience to the Board of Equalization.
As a fifth-generation native who grew up on a commercial cattle ranch, I learned the importance of a strong work ethic. Fiscally responsible, I believe gas taxes and Department of Motor Vehicles fees should be significantly reduced, and food sales taxes should be eliminated. I believe that state revenues should be used to fight fires, improve water resources, and clean up our roadways, trails, and beaches.
Over the years, I have actively supported education, military service for men and women, youth ballet, the symphony, Asian-American culture and California State Parks. A father of four daughters, the oldest of whom served in the U.S. Navy, I believe in service to one’s community and country.
I am the former chair of the Military Care Committee, which provided hundreds of care packages to US sailors and Marines. I attended UCSB, have an M.S. from M.I.T. and a B.A. and J.D. from Santa Clara University. The heart of Henry Coe State Park (now California’s second largest state park) was donated by my family — due to its unwavering appreciation for the great outdoors and the environment.
Let’s make the Board of Equalization better. Let’s get California county tax assessors to process their thousands of backlogs and relieve taxpayers of the burden of uncertainty. Let’s ensure that California Taxpayers receive due process in their appeals — whether the appeal is remotely heard via videoconference or in person.
Let’s help California county tax assessors properly interpret and apply Proposition 19 in the most taxpayer-friendly way possible — within the letter of the law.
And, perhaps most importantly, let’s encourage other tax-gathering arms under the control of the governor to develop and enhance their own Taxpayers’ Rights Advocate offices, where the obligation is to the taxpayer rather than garnering revenues for the sovereign.
For more information about my campaign for Board of Equalization, please go to www.peterverbica.com.