UPDATE: California To Impose Another $1B In Budget Cuts

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday ordered $1 billion in midyear cuts to California’s budget that will result in pain for students who rely on school buses to get to class, mothers who depend on child care subsidies to keep working and support programs for the developmentally disabled.

Brown, a Democrat, said that the state’s revenues will fall about $2.2 billion below the $88.4 billion he and state lawmakers had hoped for when they passed the budget last summer.

The announcement was not surprising and could have been worse. The state’s legislative analyst had predicted revenues would fall $3.7 billion below forecast.

Still, the automatic midyear reductions sparked outcry from advocates and invited lawsuits from school districts.

The cuts include up to $100 million each to the University of California, California State University, developmental services and in-home support for seniors and the disabled. Community college fees would increase $10 per unit from $36 to $46, and reductions would be made for child care assistance, library grants and prisons, among other programs.

School advocates warned that an estimated 1 million students — many of them with special needs or from low-income and rural areas — will be affected by the loss of home-to-school transportation funding. In addition, school districts will lose another $79.6 million under the trigger cuts.

“The cut to transportation is absolutely devastating,” said Steve Henderson, a lobbyist for the California School Employees Association, which represents school bus drivers among other school workers. “What that means is a lot of low income and rural kids will not have the ability to get to school.”

Shortly after Brown announced the cuts, which start taking effect Jan. 1, the Los Angeles Unified school board voted to sue the state over its $248 million cut to home-to-school transportation funding.

Superintendent John Deasy said at Tuesday’s school board meeting the lawsuit will be filed Wednesday. He called the loss of busing funds “catastrophic” and warned it would leave 35,000 students all over the district and 13,000 special needs students without busing to school.

Advocates estimated that cuts to schools amounts to $55 per student in California and could result in additional layoffs.

Brown and Democrats in the Legislature had hoped for a $4 billion increase in tax revenue through the current fiscal year, which ends June 30. The budget they passed last summer without Republican support was based on a combination of spending cuts, fee hikes and overly optimistic revenue projections.

The governor said that following through on the cuts is a demonstration of California’s fiscal discipline.

“This is not the way we’d like to run California. But we have to live within our means,” he said in a news conference at the state Capitol.

The midyear reduction authorizes districts to cut the school year by up to seven days, but they likely won’t have to cut more than half a day because the funding cuts weren’t as severe as predicted, finance director Ana Matosantos said.

“He proved that there is an adult in the room when it comes to courage to pulling the trigger,” said Kevin Gordon, president of School Innovations and Advocacy, a Sacramento education lobbying firm. “But he found a way to spare schools from the ultimate damage that may have occurred if all the cuts had been implemented.”

Patty Siegel, executive director of the California Child Care Resource & Referral Network, said thousands of working parents will be hit by a new round of child care cuts to save the state $23 million. The state announced it would reduce 7,500 slots for child care assistance on top of 32,000 slots cut last summer.

“When you look at that against the 187,000 fully eligible children on the waiting list for child care, you have a perfect storm for unemployment, for return to welfare, and for a lack of opportunity for children to get the best start they need,” Siegel said.

California currently faces a $3 billion shortfall and is expected to face a $10 billion deficit for 2012-13, resulting in a $13 billion gap over the next 18 months.

Earlier this year, GOP lawmakers opposed Brown’s proposal to place a question on taxes before voters without reforms to the public pension system, regulations and a spending cap. Having failed to broker a compromise with Republicans, the governor said he felt it necessary to introduce his own tax initiative, which he hopes to bring before voters next November.

Brown warned of further cuts when he releases his proposed 2012-13 budget in January unless voters support higher taxes.

Brown said he wants to temporarily increase taxes on the rich, starting with individuals making more than $250,000, and raise the statewide sales tax by half a cent, to 7.75 percent. The proposal would raise about $7 billion a year for five years.

  • LiberalButConservative


  • Dean Gorby


  • No More Snake Oil

    And why was there no Republican support for the DemocRAT budget that was rammed through in order to save their paychecks?
    Because the Republicans weren’t about to go along with calling a work of fiction a “budget”

  • Swim

    So when are we cutting off illegals? We are busy slashing schools, care for the elderly and homeless services but people here illegally still get full benefits and free housing.

    • nothingchanges

      Absolutely Swim ! That action would save MEGA !!!

  • Jeff

    WHERE is the headline that the so called tax on the rich also RAISES SALES TAX by 50 cents LIBERAL CBS.

    ALSO YOU DON’T MENTION THAT 86% OF THE EDUCATION BUDGET IS SPENT ON STAFF and BENEFITS. Only 4% towards supplies such as books, and classroom materials.

    There are many other options than this stupid tax them not me mentality that is a poison for this state.

    This is simply a union ploy nothing more. REPORT THE WHOLE TRUTH FOR ONCE.

  • MBMJ

    We are going to have a billiion dollars in cuts. Yet did anyone read the story just below this headline? The state is planning a $500 million bay bridge bike path. What the heck is going on?

    • Fred

      Same old, same old. They cut things that hurt people to extort them into voting for unnecessary tax increases.

    • Bill Monroe

      MBMJ your point is so spot-on, yet so obvious to all except our state legislators. They are willing to cause state-wide pain to children, disabled folks, the elderly, and raise college costs (bam! take that occupiers), yet spend lavishly for a frill to support just a few living in the SF Bay area.

      One has to ask how heartless is the governor and his democrat cohorts that they would do such a thing to those less fortunate? Have you no shame?

  • ty

    I would figure the conservatives would be happy about this, this is what the GOP canidates are proposing has to be done in their budget plans…

  • nothingchanges

    California has a lot in common with Greece and will end up with the same results as Greece.

  • bunch of you know what!

    yep- Can’t afford to teach our children , but hey the new cyber crimes unit costing MAJOR money is up and running!
    Only thing is…..who is going to teach out children to turn OFF the computer and NOT answer cyber bullies? Oh that’s right the parents! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA since when have parents taken any responsibility for the kids as the general rule of society?
    This is how we GOT lawmakers and politics like this!

  • Maxine Mackey

    I think it’s time to move to another state where our kids can have a chance. This is so disgusting!!!

  • Philip Fitch

    When I was growing up in California, we didn’t even have school buses. You either walked , rode your bicycle, took a public bus and walked the rest of the way to school.

    Poor little fat Johnny has to walk 45 minutes to school , 45 minutes back home, just to sit in front of the TV and play video games the rest of the day. I think the walk to school would do little Johnny some good.

    At one, time I lived 10 miles from my school, I had to get up two and half hours before school started, walk about a half mile to the public bus stop, take the bus, then walk another mile to school. I had no problem doing this. Kids will get to school one way or another.

    My mother use to walk to school with holes in her shoes, that had cardboard inserts covering the holes, in the snow durning the winter months in the mid-west. Not to mention the school was over 3 miles away.

    Spoiled kids, make fat lazy adults, that complain about issues like this. Most people don’t know what tough going is. It’s been to easy over the last 30 years. I laugh at issues like this. Get a back bone people.

  • topprioritykeepkidssafe

    Ah Phillip Fitch you must be in your 90’s, congratulations, back in them thar days ya didn’t have crack heads and child molesters roaming the streets, ya didn’t have busy streets with cars speeding down them to cross etc..
    Lets see multibillions for a high speed bullet train, millions for a Golden gate bike path, millions for a sports area that only afew thousand “RICH”Californians can afford to go to, so ya want to attack the kids education, starve the the poor kids and elderly and take away their medical insurance, sounds like nazi Germanys Hitler and storm troopers who are sitting(not them marching)over at the state capital making these decisions.

  • Ralph Sampson

    I think Phillip that there were possibly not so many child molesters, kidnappers and weirdo’s on the streets when you walked to school. backbone has nothing to do with this issue.
    the real issue is the State funding Welfare for illegal aliens, school loans for illegal alien students while they are cutting services for the developmentally disabled,. prisons, etc. The prisons are already overcrowded and they are letting criminals out on the streets early. Do you think that those programs worthwhile or do you think we should just let out all the prisoners and send them to your house? Maybe then you would see the wisdom of stopping the illegal alien programs and keep the school buses.

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