Robert Cruickshank brings the news that Sacramento leaders decided not to pull the trigger that could have been met by federal stimulus funds flowing into the state, which means that really painful cuts to health care and IHSS (in-home state services), as well as certain tax increases, will be retained. Karen Bass doesn't sound happy:
I am disappointed with the narrow reading of the trigger and the decision made today by the Director and the Treasurer. But it was the last minute changes to the budget demanded by Republican Senators that put the trigger level out of reach and all but guaranteed the higher taxes and cuts to critical programs. We agree with the Treasurer that a portion of the cuts should be restored, and we will work through the budget process to find alternative solutions to a portion of these cuts.
It's completely clear to me that, with another looming budget deficit, the Governor wanted no part of leaving any cuts or tax increases on the table, which would potentially make the deficit bigger. So they read the trigger precisely to ensure that it wouldn't be met. Never mind the very real consequences for the sick, the elderly, the blind, the disabled. A link to all the cuts here.
It didn't have to be this way. Even putting aside the "narrow reading" issue, this is a failure of both the state and the federal government. Democrats agreed to a bad deal, and the Yacht Party did their best to make the Great Recession worse by destroying the very governmental services that we need to stop the downward spiral and start a recovery. And the US Senate has blame to share, for stripping out $40 billion of the state stabilization funds and generally not being aggressive enough in dealing with the crisis facing all levels government.
California keeps cutting spending, and the recession keeps getting worse. We at Calitics understand that's no coincidence. When will Sacramento?