CA CAFR $600 billion ‘case study’ final status with state reps, local media, law enforcement

This is the final status I see with a case study to communicate California’s $600 billion in surplus assets as documented in the state’s Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) to my two state representatives, local media, law enforcement, and local community groups (school district and board, school financial support, Republican/Democratic clubs, city officials). The e-mail I sent to these local groups is the status:

LCF school funding and CA CAFR $600 billion surplus final status

Dear friends and community members,

I alerted you to information important to LCF’s volunteerism and donations to what should be basic education funding. The funding isn’t delivered from state-level claims of “budget deficits” that the financial information clearly refutes.

After five weeks of work with our two state representatives to have them affirm $600 billion in surplus taxpayer assets as revealed in California’s CAFR (Comprehensive Annual Financial Report), here’re the outcomes:

  1. I worked with Senator Liu’s consultant, Robert Oakes, and Assemblymember Portantino’s Chief of Staff, Trent Hager, to make sure both legislators were fully aware of the documented $600 billion (remember, the state claims austerity from a $16 billion budget deficit). Both chose “no comment” after five weeks of evasive acts.
  2. The local papers: The Outlook printed two letters, and The Valley Sun printed one. I met with The Valley Sun’s editors Carol Cormaci and Bill Kisiluk at their request so they were confident the letter reported objective data. Both publications chose to not print a concluding letter reporting that their two LCF-resident state representatives had no comment in light of these colossal funds and LCF heroic volunteerism and fundraising to support our schools. My argument that our reps’ “no comment” couldn’t stand public scrutiny with their reporting didn’t win their support to print such a letter.
  3. The Los Angeles Times was one of many major publications reporting on CA Parks and Recreation Department’s Director resigning and their #2 being fired over $54 million discovered in exactly the same kind of account the CA CAFR documents. In this case, their department also claimed austerity from a $22 million budget deficit. I’m following-up with several reporters of this story to alert them to the larger $600 billion story.
  4. Law enforcement reported to me that verbal fraud about need for austerity is not a crime unless I can prove funds were stolen. This seems to be a specious excuse for not taking on powerful political forces, but I chose to not pursue this avenue.

While what you do is only and always up to you, I invite your contact with our state reps and/or leverage with our local press to support exactly the disclosure of surplus assets from the CA Parks Dept. This can, and should, lead to abundant funding for our schools and infrastructure.

As I’ve stated, as an LCF native, I’m happy to help you understand the objective data. My meeting with Carol and Bill at The Valley Sun required just 20 minutes and three pages of the CAFR. This has been a local “case study” I’ve documented, with resulting reposts going to over ten million US readers (as best I can estimate from the data).

If it helps, colleagues and I have only received professional agreement that the figures we point to on official financial documents are indeed there, we’ve received no refutations to our claims of surplus assets, and this seems as an “emperor has no clothes” obvious situation to all I know who’ve looked into this issue.

Let me know if I can be of service.

Carl

Carl_Herman@post.harvard.edu

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