Luxury Cars For Lawmakers Amid Calif. Budget Mess

Only U.S. state to provide vehicles for unlimited use

SACRAMENTO (AP) — California lawmakers have a perk that seems like a luxury as the state slashes billions of dollars from its budget.

The state buys cars for lawmakers to drive around their districts and the capital under a decades-old program.

KNX 1070’s Jon Baird reports

It spent more than $5 million for the latest suite of vehicles, including a $55,000 Cadillac and a $52,000 Lexus.

Lawmakers enjoy the benefit when the state is in a financial mess. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has called legislators into a special session next week to address a $6 billion deficit.

San Francisco Chronicle political columnist Phil Matier joins KNX 1070 Newsline

Lawmakers have already cut programs including health care for children from low-income families, and more cutbacks are on the way.

California is the only state to provide vehicles to its rank-and-file lawmakers for unlimited use.

See the full list of state-subsidized vehicles here.

(TM and © Copyright 2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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