California lawmakers say deep budget cuts are likely here to stay

Inside California Politics

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — California is likely to feel its deep budget cuts through the rest of the year and well into next year.

After the president ended negotiations on a broad federal stimulus package, next week will likely cement billions in budget cuts state leaders hoped to reverse.

California needs the federal government to provide $14 billion in relief by Oct. 15 to restore $11 billion in cuts made in July to colleges, courts and other public institutions, as well as state worker pay, with deferred spending for schools.

State lawmakers said Thursday those cuts are likely here to stay.

“Everything in Washington is completely unpredictable. It’s hard to know day to day what’s going to happen, much less even hour to hour,” said Assemblyman Phil Ting, D-San Francisco. “We’re very happy with the strategy. It’s very unfortunate Washington is not doing what they need to do.”

“Now it’s time for reality,” said Sen. John Moorlach, R-Costa Mesa. “We shouldn’t have counted on the federal government. We shouldn’t have spent so much additional money up front on the COVID concern when the models were so flawed, and now it’s coming home to roost.”

Governor Gavin Newsom has yet to weigh in on what’s recently happened with federal stimulus talks but earlier in the week he said, “I believe the strategy was a prudent one.” 

“I believe the strategy is still one that will bear fruit as it relates to the federal government to do more to support American citizens across this country, including cities and states,” the governor continued.

Lawmakers say further action on this year’s budget is unlikely and there have been no signs indicating the governor will call a special session.

State budget leaders say they’re mentally preparing for next year to be another difficult financial year.

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