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Gov. Brown Addresses $16B Budget Deficit

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SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – Governor Jerry Brown’s work closing California’s budget gap just got tougher.

“We’re now facing a $16 billion hole, not the nine billion we thought in January,” Brown said in a YouTube video released Saturday.

In the online video the governor says revised projections from just five months ago put the states shortfall $7 billion higher at $16 billion.

Address to the People of California: Governor Brown Discusses 2012-2013 State Budget

“We can’t fill a hole of this magnitude with cuts alone, without doing severe damage to our schools,” Brown said.

So Gov. Brown is once again urging Californians to get behind a proposed tax hike set for the November ballot.

“That’s why I’m bypassing the gridlock and asking you, the people of California,” Brown said.

He says, without the proposed 3-percent tax on the wealthy and a quarter penny sales tax increase, schools and public safety will go into further turmoil, but not everyone agrees.

“He hasn’t really done enough with reforms; he hasn’t done enough with reigning in spending,” said CBS13’s Republican Political Analyst Aaron McLear.

McLear says republicans will have a tough time backing a tax hike, despite the gap.

“He’s made some legitimate budget cuts, he ought to get credit for that, but he’s made no attempt to reform pensions or other things that really need fixed,” said McLear.

However, the governor says the hikes have to happen.

“What I’m proposing is not a panacea, but it goes a long way toward cleaning up the states budget mess,” said Brown.

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