Monday, May 16, 2011

Quick Pass on the May Revision

I only have a few minutes today to look at the Governor's May budget revision, and here's what I see. Current-year revenues are up $2.8 billion over forecasts, and $6.6 billion over two years. Governor Brown, true to his turnscrew austerity vision of aHooverite unstimulus for all Californians, increases allocations to no one except K-12 and the community colleges "pursuant to Proposition 98," and, unbelievably, prisons, with a drop for mental health (page 4).

The Regents' strategy of saying that state funding is never coming back has paid off big-time: UC and CSU get exactly zero - not even a $10 million or $50 million booby prize for not fighting the $500 million cuts. The crappy squeezing of health services is intact (page 3), as is the closing of 70 state parks to save a whopping $11 million this year. There is no wavering of Gov Brown's vision in which government's one and only priority is reducing the deficit. 

If I have misread something here, or you can explain why it's a lot better for health and education and public infrastructure to have Jerry Brown rather than Arnold Schwarzenegger in the governor's mansion, please write.

Michael Here: Just a quick note to reiterate Chris' comment on spending.  The May Revision assumes that the Governor will still get almost all of his tax extensions (although the income tax is shortened).  In other words, it is still possible that he will end up with an "all-cuts" budget with even more fierce slashing of the budget for education, health, etc.

See helpful background on the state deficit at the UCLA Faculty Association blog.

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