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Governor Brown Releases Revised State Budget

Posted on 05/17/2012

Gov. Jerry Brown

Governor Jerry Brown released his May Revise budget proposal outlining over $4 billion in additional cuts to close what is now a $15.7 billion deficit (up from $9 billion in January). The revised budget slashes spending in almost every part of government, but proposes a 16 percent increase in funding for K-12 education, subject to voter approval of the Governor's tax increase measure in November. State funding for K-12 schools would increase from $29.3 billion in last year's budget to $34.0 billion by the end of 2013.

"We can't balance the budget with cuts alone; that would just further undermine our public schools," said Governor Brown. "The budget I am proposing will boost funding for education, protect public safety and prevent an even deeper round of trigger cuts."

The ballot measure will enact temporary income tax increases on high-income earners. It will raise income taxes by up to three percent on the wealthiest Californians for seven years and will also increase the state sales tax by one quarter of one percent for four years.

If the initiative does not pass, $6 billion in additional cuts would go into effect on January 1, 2013.

Despite intense opposition by categorical stakeholders, the Weighted Student Formula (WSF) remains a key component of the Governor's education budget proposal. The ability to move adult education out of current flexibility remains a significant challenge.

In a written statement, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said the, "May Revision raises the stakes for California's public schools, which now need the help of voters to prevent more than $5 billion in cuts and a dramatically shortened school year."

Superintendent Torlakson went on to say, "Our state's financial difficulties cannot be resolved within the Capitol alone. As Californians, we share a common future. The 6.2 million students we serve today will soon be the doctors who treat our aches and pains, the architects and skilled workers who build our homes and factories, and the programmers and engineers who design our cars and our computers."

Superintendent Torlakson's full statement is available on the California Department of Education's Web site (www).

The Legislature now has until June 30 to adopt a state budget to begin the fiscal year on July 1. Rarely has the deadline been met.