By Lindsey Holden
California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday unveiled a $291.5 billion budget to close a $37.9 billion shortfall by dipping into the state’s reserves and cutting and delaying spending.
It’s the second budget year in a row that Newsom is walking an economic tightrope between closing a large spending gap and keeping financial promises he made during more prosperous times. His budget preserves a handful of costly programs his administration enacted, including a Medi-Cal expansion for undocumented immigrants and homelessness grants for local governments.
But it cuts $8.5 billion from a variety of funds, including reductions to climate change and housing programs and school facilities. It also delays and defers more than $7 billion in funding for transit and intercity rail, early childhood education grants, clean energy and behavioral health housing. Newsom’s budget also withdraws $13 billion from the state’s reserves, a move he and legislative leaders avoided when dealing with last year’s budget gap.
This could spell trouble for the city of Inglewood as they continue to seek funds to build a nearly $3 billion transit project that needs close to an additional $1 billion in funding to begin construction.
The Legislative Analyst’s Office in December estimated the governor would be dealing with a $68 billion shortfall. But the Department of Finance’s calculation was $30 billion lower.
Source: Sacramento Bee
2UrbanGirls contributed to this report.