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Study: a California Family Needs $50k Per Year Just to Function

How much does it take for a California family to make ends meet? According to a new study -- $50,000 a year. Jenny O'Mara reports from Sacramento.

How much does it take for a California family to make ends meet? According to a new study -- $50,000 a year. Jenny O'Mara reports from Sacramento.

The report by the California Budget Project looks at wages needed to pay for the bare minimum.   No savings, no vacations, no DSL.

Executive Director Jean Ross says the report includes costs for housing, child care, transportation and food. A single person needs to make more than $28,000 a year to pay for those -- a family of four with two working parents needs a whopping $72,000 plus. A two parent family with one working parent needs just over $50,000.

Ross says Californians have a variety of ways of dealing with the high costs.

Ross : They may be living in sub-standard housing, they may be using consumer debt to bridge that gap.

The report breaks down costs and budgets by region. The Bay Area is the most expensive.

What questions do you have about the Statewide General Election coming up on Nov. 8? Submit your questions here, and we'll try to answer them in our reporting.