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Gov. Brown: State Deficit Has Been Erased

Gov. Jerry Brown unveiled his proposed 2013-14 fiscal year budget Thursday morning.

Updated at 2 p.m. Thursday

Gov. Jerry Brown unveiled a state budget for next fiscal year that is balanced and allocates more money for education.

According to the Sacramento Bee, Brown's $97 billion proposed budget for 2013-2014 has a $1 billion reserve, leading the governor to declare the state budget deficit has disappeared for the first time since the recession began.

A legislative analyst last fall had projected a $1.9 billion deficit, despite voters' approval in November of an income tax hike on high earners and a temporary hike in the sales tax.

An improving economy and higher tax revenues have erased that deficit.

Spending in the governor's 2013 budget would rise by 5 percent over the 2012-2013 budget, according to a Reuters report.

Nonetheless, the governor cautioned California cannot go back to previous spending levels. For example, Brown said he is unwilling to restore funding for some social programs that have been cut in recent years.

"It is best to maintain a very solid budget and a good reserve... or we'll go back to the boom and bust, borrow and spend," Brown was quoted by the Bee as saying.

The governor does recommend adding $125 million to both the state university and the state college system. As part of that, Brown wants colleges and universities to cap the number of classes students can take.

The governor also is recommending an additional $2.7 billion for local schools and community colleges, increasing the total education budget to $56 billion, the Bee reported.

As part of that extra funding, Brown is asking for a financial overhaul of the California school system, according to the Bee.

State Superintendent Tom Torlakson said he believes the governor is on the right track.

“The governor’s budget proposal keeps the promise we made to Californians who supported Proposition 30 and wisely begins to restore some of what our schools have lost. It will take years to bring our education system back to financial health and I applaud the governor for beginning that work in earnest," said Torlakson.

He added, “I admire the governor’s determination to move forward with an overhaul of California’s confusing system of school finance and I share his desire to direct more help to students and schools with the greatest needs. At the same time, I remain concerned about the fragile fiscal state of so many school districts and preserving state priorities. I look forward to examining details of the governor’s proposal and working closely with the education community throughout this challenging process.”

Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) released the following statement in response to the budgetproposal early Thursday afternoon:  

“After several years of crippling budget shortfalls, California is now on its way to reaching fiscal health. Thanks to California voters’ support of Proposition 30, this budget begins to reverse the devastating cuts experienced by our K-12 schools. Community Colleges, UC, and CSU would also see significant increases.

"I am pleased the Governor has prioritized using funds from Proposition 39, in a way that mirrors my legislation AB 39, so we fund energy efficiency and renewable energy for classrooms and help our schools cut the cost of their utility bills.

"The Governor’s proposed budget will put California on solid ground to invest in education, increase jobs and contribute to a growing economy. I look forward to the Legislature’s thorough review of the details in the months ahead.”   

Skinner's newly redistricted 15th Assembly District includes, among other communities, El Cerrito, Kensington, Albany, Berkeley, Emeryville, Piedmont and parts of Oakland.

The state Legislature still has to approve the governor's budget plan. Democrats now have two-third majorities in both the Assembly and state Senate.

The budget takes effect July 1.

You can see the entire budget proposal on the state financial office's website here.

teachintemec January 10, 2013 at 10:35 PM
Hmmmm. Only time will tell.
Theotis January 11, 2013 at 12:11 AM
Did gov Clown strike some billion dollar coins?
Desert Dweller January 11, 2013 at 02:54 AM
Nope, it's those rosy projections of gold showering Sacramento. Spending and taxes should sky rocket with new super majority in Sac.
Hobie January 11, 2013 at 03:29 AM
He's done it before. I can"t imagine why anyone would be surprised that he's done it again.
Net January 11, 2013 at 05:35 AM
Why in the world would ignorant Californians vote this horse voiced douche bag back into office after his previously failed record as governor? I'm guessing these people want everyone to start migrating out of California. It's getting ridiculously expensive to live here.
KB January 11, 2013 at 06:32 AM
Because in California the takers (anyone feeding at the govt trough) far outnumber the makers, and they feel entitled to the "makers" hard earned money.
Hobie January 11, 2013 at 02:37 PM
Well I guess it's plain to see the politics of these two... He succeeded quite well as governor before, leaving behind a nice surplus in the state treasury just as he apparently will do this go around. Who are the ignorant Californians? Look in the mirror...
Carl Petersen III January 11, 2013 at 05:11 PM
KB 10:38 pm on Thursday, January 10, 2013 "Because in California the takers (anyone feeding at the govt trough) far outnumber the makers, and they feel entitled to the "makers" hard earned money." . . I guess Takers versus Makers is the new Conservative talking point. Too bad nobody can tell me who makes up the "takers" or provide actual percentages. Which ideology is promoting class warfare?
Mr. Logical January 11, 2013 at 11:29 PM
Good news is tough on cynical and bitter people. Take a deep breath and raise your hands and praise the Lord! A balanced budget is good news, the Bible is great news!
Vic January 11, 2013 at 11:49 PM
I agree with teachintemec. Time will tell. Could a politician, in this day and age, ever fall short of his promises? Hmmm........
Kevin Clark January 12, 2013 at 01:37 AM
Good to see your comments Carl. Wow.. no budget defeicit? What a spin? The Calpers retirement system was/is 100 billion in the red something tells me that is not paid off.... that balanced budget must be selective. Of course I, as a lowly tax payer don't propose to know an official designation for takers, let alone an official percentage. However I would bet we are approaching a little more than 50%. If every one who works for the state, caltrans, police fire, county, city.teachers prison workers and all of thier spouses and now add all the people on welfare, food stamps, housing subsidies. WICK, grants and on and on and on. Taking has always been there but not to the degree it appears today. I have a family member who worked for 25 years for a public entity paid nothing ointo his own retirement and has now been collecting for 27 years. Fair? Previous public employees paid little to nothing into thier own retirement. And now some enties have started to pay a wopping 8% annualy depending on the entity with tax payer matched of 8% tax payer funds. They however will collect at a rate that will deplete those resources within 5 years. Then what? Who pays then? Calpers will continue to be in the red. Taker.....? Seems so simple to me receiving anything that doesn't belong to you. you then become a "taker". Hmmm...like stolen property really. All tax payers should just get assigned one taker so that at least you get to know the slob your supporting.
KB January 12, 2013 at 06:53 AM
Good news? Not when the budget is balanced on your back. Instead of spending cuts, Brown along with the takers siphon money from private sector workers and funnel it directly for the benefit of excessively over-compensated govt workers.
Hobie January 12, 2013 at 01:56 PM
What Republican Arnie couldn't do but Democrat Gray Davis tried to do. We all need to remember Gray Davis and what he tried to accomplish. Unfortunatly,we had to deal with Arnold first.
American Girl January 12, 2013 at 02:02 PM
KB I know someone who just retired from LA County Fire. $10,000 per month. Unbelieveable!!! He is very young and will collect on that for years!
Carl Petersen III January 12, 2013 at 06:04 PM
Kevin Clark 6:04 pm on Friday, January 11, 2013 "Wow.. no budget defeicit? What a spin? The Calpers retirement system was/is 100 billion in the red something tells me that is not paid off.... that balanced budget must be selective." . . The budget in question is the operating budget. It would include any payments that are due to the retirement system, but not the retirement system itself.
Carl Petersen III January 12, 2013 at 06:22 PM
Kevin Clark 6:04 pm on Friday, January 11, 2013 "If every one who works for the state, caltrans, police fire, county, city.teachers prison workers" . . I am curious as to why you would include state workers as "takers." Do they not provide services in return for their paycheck?

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