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California Lawmakers End Budget Standoff, Pass $145 Billion Plan

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

California lawmakers finally ended a more than two-month budget stand-off. They agreed to a $145 billion spending plan that eliminates the state's persistent deficit and addresses the myriad concerns of holdout Republicans. Democratic Sen. Denise Ducheny says this budget will allow people to get back to work. 

Ducheny: There are people, who because of this delay, whose jobs have been threatened, facilities that have been in danger of closing down, hospitals that are in crisis. And this will allow us to continue to employ the many people that are doing that and as Sen. Ackerman pointed out get started working on many of the projects the voters asked for by supporting the bonds last year.

The agreement will free up billions of dollars in payments to a variety of social service agencies that rely on state funding, as well as to community colleges and some education programs.

The deal also allows the legislature and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to move forward on an ambitious policy agenda. That includes sweeping health care reform and a proposal to overhaul California's massive water-delivery system of reservoirs, pumps and canals.

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