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September 13, 2011 > California Senate blocks governor's jobs plan

California Senate blocks governor's jobs plan

By Judy Lin, Associated Press

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP), Sep 10 - Republicans in the state Senate blocked Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to promote job creation through tax reform early Saturday, as the Legislature adjourned its regular session for the year.

SB116 required Republican votes, but Republicans objected that Brown tried to rush through his bill on the last day of the legislative session.

A similar measure, AB40X1, earlier cleared the Assembly. But after repeated roll calls, SB116 fell five votes short of the two-thirds majority it needed as lawmakers gaveled the session to an end after 1 a.m.

Sen. Sam Blakeslee, R-San Luis Obispo, said Republicans tried to work with Brown on comprehensive tax reforms six months ago, without success. He and other Republicans said the Legislature should not rush through the Democrat's plan in the closing hours of the legislative session.

``Let's call a special session and get it right,'' Blakeslee said. Senate Minority Leader Bob Dutton, R-Rancho Cucamonga, had called on Brown to call such a session on California's economy in a letter to the governor on Thursday.

Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, unsuccessfully urged lawmakers to pass his bill without further delay.

``The rush is we need to put these families back to work. We need to get them jobs sooner rather than later,'' de Leon said.

Brown's plan called for closing a 2009 tax loophole that benefited large, multi-state corporations by allowing them to choose between two formulas and thus, lower their tax liability in the state. He wants those companies, many of them based out of state, to follow one formula by calculating it solely on the portion of sales they have in California, which would generate an estimated $1 billion in additional revenue for the state each year.

The governor proposed to use the proceeds on tax breaks for California manufacturers and small businesses by encouraging them to buy equipment and expand in the state. He also would use some of the money to increase the standard deduction on the state income tax, which would provide more cash to more than 4 million working Californians.

Individuals would be able to claim an additional $1,000 and couples $2,000. For 2011, the standard deduction for individuals is $3,769 and $7,538 for couples.

``It's unbelievable that so many politicians in Sacramento would choose to protect cigarette makers and out-of-state corporations to the detriment of California jobs,'' Brown said in a statement as his bill stalled late Friday.

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, said Democrats had to put the measure into a new bill because Republicans would not agree to waive parliamentary deadlines so the Assembly-approved bill could be considered.

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Associated Press writer Don Thompson contributed to this story.

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