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Welfare-To-Work Program Changes Under Budget Deal

Aired 6/21/12 on KPBS News.

Differences over cuts to California’s welfare-to-work program were at the center of budget negotiations between Governor Jerry Brown and Democratic legislative leaders.

Differences over cuts to California's welfare-to-work program were at the center of budget negotiations between Governor Jerry Brown and Democratic legislative leaders.

Under the deal, Democratic leaders agreed to reduce the length of time families can receive cash grants from four years to two years, if they do not meet work requirements.

But it would allow counties to override the two year time limit if a parent is close to finding a job, or lives in a high unemployment area.

Other exceptions are possible.

"It was sort of a compromise among the various pieces certainly from our standpoint, the harshest piece of this, the grant cuts are out, and I think that's good for kids and that's really what the Calworks program is all about," stated Mike Herald with the Western Center on Law and Poverty.

Democratic leaders estimate the savings from the changes to the CalWorks program could be around $423 million dollars.

The legislature expects to vote on the remaining budget items on Tuesday.

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