Monday, January 10, 2011
SACRAMENTO, Calif. Governor Jerry Brown will share his spending plan for the state today. The new California governor is facing a budget deficit that could be as much as $28 billion.
Jerry Brown has made a point of being completely blunt when it comes to the state’s budget. He dedicated much of his inaugural address to the topic.
“The budget I present next week will be painful, but it will be an honest budget,” Brown said. “The items of spending will be matched with available tax revenues.”
Brown said he won’t raise taxes without voter approval – which is why a lot of people are expecting a ballot measure to at least extend current taxes that would help support education funding. Of course, the weak economy is largely to blame for California’s fiscal problems. But Jason Sisney who is part of the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst’s Office said odds are things aren’t going to improve any time soon.
“It’s not a good bet to bet that the economy will rescue the state and local governments from this problem,” Sisney said.
He said that means California’s fiscal crisis is probably going to last a long time.
“It’s likely to be a number of years of very painful budgets without some of the tools like federal funding that have helped us get through the last few years,” Sisney said. “The state and local governments are on their own now, and it’s the job of Californians to address this problem, and that’s going to mean very hard decisions over a number of years.”
According to the Legislative Analyst’s Findings, California will have budget shortfalls around $20 billion through next six years. So, the spending plan that Jerry Brown introduces today is just a small step in getting California’s fiscal house in order.