California cap-and-trade spending frenzy

As the holidays approach, California is siphoning billions of dollars in auction revenue proceeds generated under CARB’s cap-and-trade program governing greenhouse gas emissions for purposes that are unrelated to greenhouse gas emissions.  Fast speed rail, disadvantaged communities (identified by zip codes), natural resources “diversions,” and pack-and-stack housing are just some of the projects funded by the auction proceeds.  How those and other pet projects of Governor Brown will lower carbon dioxide emissions is unclear.  The details can be read here.

CARB is sponsoring a public hearing on the so-called “Second Investment Plan,” covering the years 2016 through 2019, on December 17, 2015.  If you want to have any impact on the way in which auction proceeds are being spent, this is the time to provide your input.  The hearing is being held at 9:00 a.m., Pacific, at CARB Headquarters, 1001 I Street, Sacramento, CA 95814. Written comments can be made by December 14, 2015.

On behalf of a variety of clients, PLF has challenged the auctions as illegal taxes under California’s constitution.  The lawsuit is pending in the California appellate court system.