On Monday Gov. Jerry Brown will unveil what he calls a fiscal reality check for Californians, the 2011-12 state budget.
Sources close to the budget process, and documents obtained by Voice of OC, indicate just how stark Brown’s response to the $28 billion budget deficit will be.
Expect cuts in social services such as welfare (also known as CalWORKs) along with a shifting of those responsibilities to counties.
Brown’s budget proposal also will apparently seek to shift service delivery responsibilities from the state to the local level. Specific areas already mentioned for such transfers include probation, as well as jailing responsibilities for low-level offenders.
Redevelopment agencies are also in for a tough battle. They are expected to take a $2 billion hit in Brown’s budget over the next 18 months by shifting monies over to schools. Brown’s goal after that is to realign redevelopment programs to counties permanently.
By proposing such a budget, Brown’s apparent aim is to set the stage for a debate among Californians about just what kind of government they’re prepared to pay for.
The debate culminates in June, when Brown is widely expected to hold a special election that will ask voters to extend a series of taxes — personal income taxes, sales taxes and vehicle license fees — worth $8 billion.
— NORBERTO SANTANA, JR.