Contra Costa area health and human services advocates plan a two-day “Stop the Cuts” tour on Thursday and Friday intended to illuminate the impacts of proposed cuts in the as-yet-approved state budget.
It’s yet another sign of frustration in California as state lawmakers remain deadlocked in Sacramento over how to jump the financial equivalent of the Grand Canyon with a bicycle.
The van starts at the Food Bank in Concord at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, and over the course of two days, advocates with Health Access will visit a rape crisis center in San Pablo, an adult daycare center in Pleasant Hill and a childcare center in Antioch.
The group has invited a number of elected officials to join them including county supervisors and local mayors.
But the advocates specifically target Assemblyman Guy Houston, R-San Ramon, in their tour announcement, calling on the sole Bay Area Republican lawmaker to see for himself the impacts of the governor’s proposed cuts. For example, Health Access estimates that 900 Contra Costa seniors and people with disabilities will lose the financial support they need to stay in their homes.
Democrats and Republicans are stymied in Sacramento over how to close a $15 billion deficit in the next fiscal year budget, which actually started July 1.
Democrats favor tax increases combined with cuts, while Republicans vow to fight tax hikes. Adding to the political pressure cooker, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has vowed to cut to minimum wage the salaries of 200,000 state workers beginning Thursday as the state runs out money to pay its bills.
Lawmakers will eventually cut a deal — we hope — but most of their options are bad and the outcome is likely to please no one.