Dr. Frates was quoted recently in the San Bernadino County Sun on the subject of the effect of the state withholding welfare payments to counties during the current budget crisis. Dr. Frates believes that counties have little recourse in this conflict:
Whether counties sue the state or withhold revenue from it, the state ultimately has the power, said Steven Frates, senior fellow at the Rose Institute of State and Local Government at Claremont McKenna College.
“The counties are agencies of the state. The state’s holding all the aces in this card game,” Frates said. “The Legislature sets the rules.”
The coalition, however, could prove instrumental in putting pressure on the state to reach some kind of accord.
“What the Legislature responds to is political pressure,” said Frates.