Black Reparations Bill at $800B for California

( – California’s proposal to pay so-called “reparations” to black state residents would triple the state’s total annual budget, according to a group of experts tasked with examining the idea.

The state’s reparations task force included five economists and policy wonks; they found that reparations payments would cost the state $800 billion. But that figure isn’t the true total. The committee said the figure doesn’t include the cost of compensating property owners whose property was alleged to be taken unjustly.

Nor does it include the cost of what the panel calls the devaluation of black-owned businesses.

The task force is meeting again this week to continue discussing the plan’s costs.

One California Assembly member who sits on the legislative reparations committee (this is different from the policy task force) said policymakers have to “go in with an open mind and come up with creative ways to deal with this.” Reggie Jones-Sawyer is one of two committee members who need to convince Governor Gavin Newsom to adopt the reparations scheme.

It seems unlikely that even the most progressive lawmakers will agree to pay California’s black residents a sum that costs three times the state’s annual budget. Such payments, of course, come from citizen tax revenue.

The legislative committee has a July 1 deadline to agree on a dollar amount for reparations.

Another lawmaker on the committee, state senator Steven Bradford, said arriving at the figure would be hard. He asked what the proper compensation would be for what he called “hundreds of years of harm, even 150 years post-slavery.”

The idea to pay reparations to black Californians started in San Francisco. Last month a city reparations panel called on the city to give each black resident $5 million. That figure came from a “journey” not a math formula, according to San Francisco reparations committee chairman Eric McDonnell.

Though slavery was never legal in California, reparations advocates say the state owes black residents for past “discrimination.”

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