Schwarzenegger targets poor with budget cuts

October 9, 2010

Just before he signed the new budget on Friday, Gov. Arnold Schwazenegger slashed nearly $1 billion in spending for welfare, child care, special education, and other programs. [LA Times]

The governor slashed 23 line items from the $87.5-billion general fund budget, including $256 million from a program for school-age children of families moving off welfare, $133 million from mental health services for special education students and nearly $60 million from AIDS treatment and prevention programs.

Schwarzenegger gave no explanation for his actions.

Meanwhile, advocates for the poor said the governor’s cuts were too deep, especially after a months-long standoff had produced a compromise spending plan that largely spared health and welfare programs from the ax.

The spending plan totals about $125 billion overall and passed the Legislature a record 100 days after the budget year began. It addresses a $19.1-billion deficit without new taxes and relies heavily on creative bookkeeping, as well as on cuts to public schools and state workers’ paychecks.

Democrats were calling Schwarzenegger a hypocrite. Earlier this week, he had held a news conference announcing his support for extending foster care to young adults up to age 21; they’re currently cut off after turning 18. But on Friday, the governor vetoed nearly $80 million in child welfare services, which includes money for foster care.

“It is unfortunate that the governor just this past week portrayed himself as a child welfare advocate, and then within days he devastated foster kids with the stroke of his blue pencil,” said Assemblywoman Karen Bass (D-Los Angeles), the former speaker who is now running for Congress



  1. Typoqueen says:

    The schools, foster care. SS etc need to cut back. I feel they spend way too much. The problem is that Arnie is putting the horse behind the cart. These entities need to be restructured and it needs to be done soon. The antiquated systems in place have too much bureaucracy and waste and overall are just stuck in the 50s.. They need to be fully financially supported by us as opposed to privatization but they need to stop pissing away money in programs that aren’t working. Foster care, the post office, SS and the schools need to be restructured from top to bottom and until that’s done they will just continue to spiral down no matter how much money we throw at them.

    (-1) 1 Total Votes - 0 up - 1 down
  2. JimSeybert says:

    “Schwarzenegger gave no explanation for his actions.”

    The explanation is simple – those whose programs were cut have no real voice to argue on their behalf, and they contribute very little to the campaign funds of the folks who make the rules.

    And the beat goes on – those least able to help themselves are screwed by the very people sworn to protect them.

    (-2) 34 Total Votes - 16 up - 18 down
    • ThomasPaine says:

      Well said. Though it shouldn’t have needed to be said at all.

      (-9) 17 Total Votes - 4 up - 13 down
    • SLOChildrenAtPlay says:

      I doubt the GOP in California even cares about how the poor affected by Schwatzenegger’s actions will vote. Meg Whitman has enough of her own money to buy as many votes as she needs from the majority of you sheep. The one with the most T.V. time wins….right? Isn’t that how Arnold won?

      (-2) 4 Total Votes - 1 up - 3 down
      • ThomasPaine says:

        “Isn’t that how Arnold won?”

        Well, that, and the back room deals made with Enron

        (-2) 4 Total Votes - 1 up - 3 down
  3. Moderator says:

    (-1) 3 Total Votes - 1 up - 2 down
  4. srichison says:

    No one thinks they should have to be cut. And, that’s the problem. As long as this state guarantees money at the ballot box (think “ballot initiatives”) there will be no fiscal solution. Every time you see a ballot measure that has any cost, just know that any money spent there will have to be cut somewhere else. The real solution? One ballot initiative to repeal all previous initiatives and to amend the state constitution so there is no initiative provision. Let the legislature start from scratch. They wouldn’t like it either, though, because they don’t want to be held responsible.

    (16) 20 Total Votes - 18 up - 2 down
  5. roymann says:

    No easy answers here, California’s budget is out of control.

    (18) 24 Total Votes - 21 up - 3 down
  6. danika says:

    I think this is just the beginning of cuts across the board for all programs. We need to get a handle on the spending in this state. Hard choices, harder decisions. Had to start somewhere. Perhaps the pensions will be next….doubtful.

    (19) 29 Total Votes - 24 up - 5 down
  7. —————————-Its California as seen at
    Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger should look for other ways to save money! My suggestion would be to show Caltrans how to use a shovel!

    (-7) 23 Total Votes - 8 up - 15 down
    • bobfromsanluis says:

      Dude: We all get it; the State of California has done you very very wrong. You do get somewhat overbearing trying to get all of us on your side however, please give it a rest here on this site, okay?

      (19) 25 Total Votes - 22 up - 3 down

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