Under Proposition 68, candidates who agree to campaign spending limits receive matching amounts from a special state fund. Each income taxpayer may allocate $3 of his or her state income taxes to the fund.
Brown claimed that the $3 voluntary tax checkoff would not provide adequate funding. As a tax lawyer and certified public accountant, I know he's wrong.
The legislative analyst has estimated that Proposition 68 will cost $9 million, or 22 cents per Californian. California has over 15 million taxpayers; if only one-fifth of them bother to check the box on their state tax return, the fund will be fully adequate.
The voluntary tax return checkoff system has already proved itself at the federal level, where a mere $1 checkoff is sufficient for all of the various presidential campaigns. Proposition 68 mandates phraseology on the state income tax return which more clearly indicates to taxpayers that checking the appropriate box will not increase their taxes or decrease their refund. If the number of taxpayers who check the box on their state tax return is even equal to the federal rate, there will be more than ample revenues to implement Proposition 68.