California Governor Gavin Newsom remains silent as his state plans to distribute potentially hundreds of billions of dollars to black residents in reparations to fix slavery and the discrimination that results from it.
Newsom, a Democrat, has yet to take a stand or publicly comment on the prospect of his state potentially adopting a series of recent reparations proposals that are gaining traction in California. The governor’s office did not respond to any of Fox News Digital’s repeated requests for comment regarding its views on the matter and whether it plans to take executive action to implement the plans being discussed if the legislature Californian was not acting.
The California Reparations Task Force, which was created by state legislation Newsom signed in 2020, is considering a proposal to give just under $360,000 per person to about 1.8 million Black Californians who had an enslaved ancestor in the United States, putting the total cost of the program at around $640 billion.
The task force’s final recommendations for reparations will be submitted to the California Legislature, which will then decide whether to implement the measures and send them to Newsom’s office for enactment.
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Newsom’s silence on reparations comes amid growing calls for him to use his power to unilaterally pass the state’s black resident task force proposals if the legislature fails to do so.
“The Task Force does the heavy lifting of preparing final recommendations, but ultimately these recommendations are non-binding and still require uncompromising political will to enact remedies that will begin to address centuries of worsening damage. “, Dreisen Heath, a leading reparations expert and activist, recently told Fox News Digital. “Governor Newsom has the authority to enact these recommendations, if they are in fact aligned with the wishes of the entire descendant community, after the release of the final report on July 1, and should do so if lawmakers in the ‘state do not act.’
Last year, the state task force made several preliminary recommendations in an interim report. A final report with the panel’s official recommendations is due by July 1 to the state legislature.
The committee was created amid the unrest following the 2020 killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. None of the nine panel members, the majority of whom were appointed by Newsom, are white.
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The task force originally proposed $220,000 per person for black Californians last year, but recently increased the figure by more than 60% to $360,000, one of several ideas being considered for awarding reparations.
Economists and academics consulted by the task force arrived at the latest proposal using a model that assessed California’s racial wealth gap, calculating damages from injustices such as housing discrimination, mass incarceration and damage to health.
It’s unclear how California would pay for large-scale repairs. Newsom announced in January that the state faced a projected budget shortfall of $22.5 billion for the coming fiscal year. Then, weeks later, the California Legislative Analyst’s Office, a government agency that analyzes the state legislature’s budget, estimated in a subsequent report that Newsom’s forecast fell short of the roughly $7 billion mark. dollars.
Yet Lisa Holder, a member of the task force and president of the far-left Equal Justice Society, swore in a recent opinion piece that the committee’s “recommendations will be breathtaking.”
Meanwhile, as California considers statewide reparations, the city of San Francisco is evaluating its own local reparations proposals.
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Last week, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors expressed “unanimous” support for a draft plan of more than 100 reparations recommendations for the city, including a proposal to distribute $5 million each to eligible black residents. The $5 million lump sum payment proposal would cost non-black families in the city at least $600,000, according to Stanford University’s Hoover Institution.
The city council has also expressed interest in other forms of reparations for San Francisco’s roughly 50,000 black residents, such as a guaranteed annual income of at least $97,000 for 250 years and a home in the area for just $1. dollar per family.
Another idea being explored is a “comprehensive debt forgiveness” program that would erase all personal, education and credit card debt from low-income black households.
Like California, San Francisco also faces a massive deficit, estimated at $728 million, which makes it unclear how the city would pay for such a reparations plan.
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According to Heath, local efforts in San Francisco or other cities to pay for reparations should not absolve any state, including California, or the federal government from also paying for their own reparations.
“San Francisco’s work at the local level must work to address localized harms and does not deny the U.S. government or the State of California for redressing its crimes,” she recently told Fox News Digital. “It is not for any city to remedy damages caused by the federal or state government.”
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