California’s governor-elect holds budget forum on state’s fiscal crisis

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California Governor-elect Jerry Brown speaks to supporters as he celebrates his win during an election night party at Fox Theater on November 2, 2010 in Oakland, California.

California governor-elect Jerry Brown will host a town hall meeting Wednesday morning with state officials to discuss the state budget crisis. At last count California faced a $25 billion deficit next year. Brown wants to pin down the “depth and breadth” of California’s fiscal problems.

Brown, the once and future governor, has invited California’s finance director to give a PowerPoint presentation on the budget to the state’s top fiscal officers and advisors. He’s asked the treasurer, controller, legislative leaders and the non-partisan legislative analyst to attend. He's also extended the invitation to local officials and state-wide elected officials.

A spokesman for Brown said the governor-elect wants to “ensure that all parties are working with the same set of facts" — facts that define how big and how bad California’s deficit problem really is.

At the meeting, Brown doesn’t expect to propose any solutions to that problem. His spokesman says the governor-elect, who’ll be sworn in on Jan. 3, just wants to “get the ball rolling” on a plan to balance the state’s budget. He said that plan “will require a lot of shared sacrifice.”

On Monday, outgoing Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger called an afternoon press conference to release his plan for dealing with the state’s $6 billion shortfall in the current fiscal year.

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