<em>Patt Morrison</em> is known for its innovative discussions of local politics and culture, as well as its presentation of the effects of national and world news on Southern California.
Hosted by
Airs

California’s budget proposal invokes deep cuts, creativity and wishful thinking




Budget Battle
Budget Battle
Getty Images

Listen to story

30:43
Download this story 14.0MB

After the longest budget impasse California has ever seen since the July 1 start of its fiscal year, lawmakers yesterday got their first look at a plan to close the state’s $19 billion deficit, which now represents more than 20 percent of the state's $87.5 billion general fund. The plan on the table isn’t so much a compromise as a mutually assured budget of pain, the result of a bitter gridlock in which Republicans refused anything that could be interpreted as a tax or fee increase and Democrats were unwilling to cut more than $7.5 billion in spending. The result is no tax increases and a harsh order of spending cuts, creative accounting and wishful thinking. For example, it assumes the federal government will send California $5.3 billion, nearly $2 billion more than Schwarzenegger projected in May, and it really hopes Californians bounce out of the recession to send $1.4 billion in additional tax revenue to state coffers. We take a look at where the cuts will come from, starting with the delay of nearly $2 billion in payments to K-12 schools and community colleges and just how realistic this plan is.