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  Klehs, Johan
NameJohan Klehs
San Leandro, California , United States
Born June 27, 1952 (69 years)
ContributorSummer Intern
Last ModifedRBH
Feb 02, 2017 03:51am
InfoJohan Klehs career demonstrates his deep commitment to public service. Most recently, he served two terms as an elected member on the Board of Equalization (BOE). In his re-election bid in 1998, he won the race with the largest vote margin of any constitutional officer in California. As Chair of the BOE, he served as a member of the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) in 1995, 1996, and 1999.

Prior to his election to the BOE, Johan served in the California Assembly for 12 years (1982-1994). As Chair of the Assembly Revenue and Taxation Committee, he carried major tax reform legislation that reduced taxes for 71% of California families, removed 278,000 families from the tax rolls and cut the corporate rate from 9.6% to 9.3%. He also authored legislation to ban assault weapons, to govern the sale of concealable firearms, and to protect victims of child abuse and domestic violence. For this work and much more, Johan was honored as "Legislator of the Year" by an array of leading California advocacy groups including police officers, the disabled community, credit unions, the California Abortion Rights Action League and the California Teachers Association.

Under Johan's leadership, the BOE became the first public agency in California to have a customer services division because Johan believes that taxpayers should be treated like customers and not just sources of revenue. Through vigorous efforts at the BOE and FTB, Johan brought more than $4.1 billion in added revenue to state and local coffers at the expense of tax cheats and evaders. He supported tax-cut packages to aid families and businesses totaling over $7 billion and was the prime sponsor of the California Internet Tax Freedom Act. Both as a legislator and member of the FTB and BOE, Johan supported programs that resulted in more than $435 million in collections from deadbeat parents.

The son of immigrants, Johan Klehs was born in Alameda in 1952. Growing up in San Leandro, he worked his way through high school and college. Academic scholarships helped him graduate from California State University, Hayward with a Bachelor's degree in Political Science and a Masters of Public Administration. In 1988, Johan graduated from Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government. Johan was first elected to office in 1978, becoming the youngest person ever to serve on the San Leandro City Council.

Currently Johan Klehs is a lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley. He also serves as a strategic advisor to private and public sector organizations.

Sources: Candidate campaign website, SmartVoter.org


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