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August 12, 2022

Letter: California will not be missed

I moved out of California this year. Astronomical taxes along with diminishing services, high prices, increasing crime, crumbling infrastructure, and absence of leadership led me to an easy and obvious decision to leave.

The California of today reminds me of my hometown of Cleveland, Ohio in the 1970s. Back then, roads were not being maintained, neighborhoods were in disrepair, people disrespected each other, race relations were strained, schools were underfunded and failing, people were moving out of the state, and elected officials seemed powerless to fix things.

When I visited Cleveland last year, I was shocked. There was a sense of civic pride that I no longer see in California. The roads were better, people were genuinely happy and friendly, entire neighborhoods had been renovated, and there was great positive momentum. Now that I live in Cleveland again, it’s even better than I anticipated.

I pay under $4.50 for a gallon of gas. Registering my car cost $66 versus $571 in California. My auto insurance went from $811 to $298 for the same coverage. Food is less expensive, sales tax is lower, income tax is lower, and, of course, the price of real estate is a small fraction.

I’ve never minded paying high taxes as long as the money is effectively spent. I don’t see that in California. For example, on my drive to Ohio, I passed through Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana. Sadly, California had the worst roads, by far.

Except for the weather, California is just like Ohio of the 1970s. It’s dirty, crumbling, and in desperate need of effective leadership. I’ll miss many people in Gilroy, but I won’t miss California.

Mark Roberts

Lakewood, Ohio

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