(photo credit: Susy Morris)
The holiday season is slowly winding down as we approach 2014. On Christmas day on our Facebook page we decided to keep the wonk to a minimum and embrace something more light, which is why we asked our Facebook fans what the best gift California could receive from Santa would be.
Our loyal Facebook fans took a break from opening presents and enjoying their families to provide some of their insights, and the resulting 40+ comments offer a fascinating and anecdotal look into what regular Californians want for the state we are working so hard to fix. Below are some of the highlights of the comment section, as well as some links to our previous reporting on the topics mentioned.
First, there were of course the required pleas for more rain, comments that received some impressive like counts. But scroll down a bit farther and bubbling to the top are what would amount to some serious Santa gift coups, many of them centered around the quality of life of their fellow Californians as well as the economy. Hilary Barboza asked for “homes for our homeless veterans,” and Norma Sotoo Ramos continued in that theme by requesting a “better economy, public transit, job opportunities, healthcare, and assistance to homeless and poverty-stricken people.” It’s good to know Californians care about these issues, because we do as well. We’ve covered the issue of homeless services extensively in 2013.
Commentors also put a lot of importance in the value of not just the dollar, but the value of elected officials that know this as well. Eric W. Senn asked Santa for “politicans that do not waste away our tax dollars,” something everyone can get behind. Tammy Whitney Butros asked for “lower housing prices,” and Aloush Alsadi requested a “well paying job, $12 an hour minimum.” As per Tammy’s request, the California Economic Summit has an action plan for making that happen, and we’ve also done some work looking into suggestions to increase the minimum wage.
Finally, in the same vein, Sharon Stein offered up a three-way-tie between “more non-government middle-class jobs and/or lower colleges fees, with more openings for residents.” Bill Thraen asked for “about one million new jobs!” which certainly sounds great to us, and the key to more middle class jobs may come from California’s community college system.
But perhaps the most valuable gift of all for California was suggested by Jennifer Green, and it requires no additional commentary. “Sanity,” Green wrote. “Anyone know how to wrap that?”