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Brown Signs Budget Bills

— Governor Jerry Brown signed a number of bills that reduce California’s budget deficit by about 11 billion dollars. They include about eight billion in cuts, including reductions to welfare, higher education and Medi-Cal. Brown said they’re not easy to stomach.

“The legislature has done some very heroic work,” said Brown. “These are painful cuts. It hits vulnerable people. It’s not the kind of thing that I like doing. I don’t think it’s the kind of thing that any of the legislators like doing but when you have a deficit you have to do something.”

Governor Brown has not yet signed the main budget bill, partly because lawmakers have not yet reached an agreement on about half of his budget package.

Republicans oppose Brown’s plan to ask voters to extend tax increases for five years. The Governor says he continues to meet with GOP lawmakers, but he is running out of time to put the tax measure on a June ballot.

Brown said he is also considering other alternatives, including a November ballot initiative.

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