Jerry Brown vetoes state budget package

Gov. Jerry Brown has vetoed the state budget package that the Democrat-dominated Legislature sent him yesterday.

Here’s the veto message:

I am returning Senate Bill 69 and Assembly Bill 98 without my signature.

In January, I presented a balanced budget solution with a mix of deep spending cuts and temporary tax extensions subject to voter approval. My plan would put these extended revenues in a lockbox, ensuring that they are only used to protect education and public safety. It would also address California’s long term fiscal crisis by substantially paying down the $35 billion wall of debt built up over the last decade.

Yet Republicans in the Legislature blocked the right of the people to vote on this honest, balanced budget.

Meanwhile, Democrats in the Legislature made valiant efforts to address California’s budget crisis by enacting $11 billion in painful cuts and other solutions. I commend them for their tremendous efforts to balance the budget in the absence of Republican cooperation.

Unfortunately, the budget I have received is not a balanced solution. It continues big deficits for years to come and adds billions of dollars of new debt. It also contains legally questionable maneuvers, costly borrowing and unrealistic savings. Finally, it is not financeable and therefore will not allow us to meet our obligations as they occur.

We can – and must – do better. A balanced budget is critical to our economic recovery. I am, once again, calling on Republicans to allow the people of California to vote on tax extensions for a balanced budget and significant reforms. They should also join Democrats in supporting job creation and ending tax breaks for out-of-state companies. If they continue to obstruct a vote, we will be forced to pursue deeper and more destructive cuts to schools and public safety– a tragedy for which Republicans will bear full responsibility.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Truthclubber

    Elwood (or is that Hellwad?) said “When he signs the bill Jerry will prove that he is just another lying scumbag like the dimmiecrats…” — so now that Jerry has actually vetoed it (without a signature, mind you) what does this prove about Hellwad?

    I think all of you can figure that out on your own…

  • John W

    Jerry must have read Elwood’s post and decided to throw him a curve just to make him look bad.

  • Elwood

    Ah, toothsucker, so nice to hear from you again.

    And you’re still a liar.

  • Elwood

    Curveball would be a good nickname for Jerry, but I’m afraid that one was already taken in the lead up to the Iraq war.

  • Common Tater

    So I guess this means that the legislature really DIDN’T pass a budget on time and therefore their pay should stop immediately.

    Am I right?

  • Josh Richman

    @Common Tater: That’s up to Controller John Chiang, and he hasn’t decided yet.

  • John W

    Since it’s murky, Chiang should refuse to pay and let the legislators go to court. Would be fun to see who chooses to participate in the legal action.

  • Wendy Lack

    “California” is now a punch line — like Greece. No wonder there’s a mass exodus from the state.

    Here’s hopin’ that Chiang docks legislators’ pay, since their budget was bogus from the get-go.