The radical anti tax movement has put up some bold suggestions in the past two months as Jerry Brown’s budget has proceeded through the system. First they flat out refused to allow any tax measures. Then they wanted a tax cuts along side Brown’s measures, an entirely unworkable proposal. But the one thing they haven’t suggested?
A balanced budget. As of right now, all they have done is complain about potential taxes, without doing any of the difficult work of identifying the cuts that would allow us to work through without increases.
Fortunately, the Legislative Analyst’s office (LAO), at the request of Senate Democratic leadership, has done some of that work for them. The Bee got a copy of it, and boy, is this ugly:
As was expected, the alternatives are grim – $4.5 billion less for K-12 schools than Brown proposed, as well as a $1.7 billion reduction to universities and community colleges. The Analyst’s Office also laid out $2.6 billion in cuts to corrections and courts, $1.2 billion in health and social services reductions, $1.8 billion in cuts to “general” state and local government operations and $1.7 billion in cuts to transportation and resources.(SacBee)
Now, these aren’t necessarily LAO recommendations, but rather just possible suggestions that would be doable under current law. If you drill down further, the cuts are, as expected, most painful for those that need it the most. Tuition at UC and CSU would go up another 7-10%, CalWorks eligibility would be decreased, and larger class sizes would just be a few of the potential cuts. For the business folks, there’s the suggest cut that would axe the small business loan guarantee program. Oh, and for those living out in wildfire country, the State would say that you are pretty much on your own.
These are all pretty hypothetical at this point, but if we don’t pass some sort of additional revenue, the consequences will be pretty dire one way or another.