Poor to suffer most under governor’s proposed budget
May 15, 2010
Gov. Schwarzenegger outlined his new budget on Friday, a proposal that would eliminate the state’s welfare-to-work program and most child care for the poor. [Los Angeles Times]
The governor’s $83.4 billion plan would also freeze funding for local schools, further cut state workers’ pay and take away 60 percent of state money for local mental health programs.
Higher education and California state parks would be spared from any cuts.
Schwarzenegger’s proposed budget assumes $3.4 billion in help from Washington to help close a budget gap now estimated at $19.1 billion. Billions more would be saved through accounting moves and fund shifts.
“California no longer has low-hanging fruits,” the governor said Friday. “I now have no choice but to…call for elimination of some very important programs.
Elimination of CalWorks, the state’s main welfare program, would affect 1.3 million people, including about 1 million children. Such a move would make California the only state not to offer a welfare-to-work program for low-income families with children.
Democratic leaders immediately vowed to reject the governor’s plan and develop alternatives, including new taxes on oil companies as well as the abolition of some corporate tax breaks.