Gov. Brown Vetoes State Budget Approved By Democrats

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Gov. Jerry Brown Thursday vetoed the state budget approved by Democratic lawmakers — a spending package that had Los Angeles- area city officials and education leaders scrambling to figure out how the spending proposal would impact services and schools.

“Unfortunately, the budget I have received is not a balanced solution,” according to Brown, who was scheduled to further discuss his veto at a Los Angeles news conference this afternoon. “It continues big deficits for years to come and adds billions of dollars in new debt.

“It also contains legally questionable maneuvers, costly borrowing and unrealistic savings,” Brown added.

Brown took shots at both Democrats and Republicans in his veto message. He said he had proposed a balanced budget in January that would have protected education and public safety through a temporary extension of some taxes upon voter approval.

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

It remains to be seen how legislators will proceed from here and if they will get paid. An amendment to the state constitution approved by voters in November prevents lawmakers from getting paid unless they pass a balanced budget by a June 15 deadline. It does not specify whether or not the budget must be signed by the governor.

“We can and must do better,” Brown said.

He added a warning to Republicans: “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.”

Senate Republican leader Bob Dutton, R-Rancho Cucamonga, on Wednesday called the budget package “irresponsible” and said it “demonstrates that legislative Democrats would rather pander to their special interest allies than adopt the long-term budget solutions that Californians demand and deserve.”

“Let me say it again, Senate Republicans provided Governor Brown and the Democrats a pathway to a bi-partisan budget solution that would have allowed voters to decide on taxes, meaningful pension reform and a hard spending cap,” Dutton said. “On March 25, Governor Brown said no and broke off budget negotiations with Republicans.”

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

  • Oscar Gutierrez

    Governor Jerry Brown made the right choice in the veto of the current proposed budget, The State Senate and the Assembly need to conform to the rules that do not allow any kind of questionable legal tactics used to pass it with just a simple majority. Lets work within the legal framework so there is no question on to its standing or validity. This is not a Republican VS. Democrat issue this is about saving California from a major fiscal crisis.

  • CAB

    Stae sales tax was raised 1 full percent last year without a termination date. With a state population of over 37 million, that amounts to HUNDRED OF MILLION OF $$$ PER YEAR. The problem is not revenue, it’s expenditures.

    Brown wants to extend income tax too. Go ahead and put it to a vote. You will see how loudly Californians can say NO!

  • mark

    When will the Public Workers Unions let go, will they simply in their hard headness, just let the state meltdown, 60% of something is a whole lot better then 100% of nothing, don’t get me wrong, if I was making almost 100,000.00 a year each, I would fight tooth and nail if somebody ( the public ) was trying to take it away, but common sense does not seam to be in great demand, now greed is very popular, go figure. C.C.P.O.A. needs to rethink their long term strat. they have the most political power, just because you have not heard this does’t make it true.

  • Teufel Wolf

    It is obvious we can’t govern ourselves. California’s statehood should be revoked, and the state should be placed into receivership and liquidated.

  • Anthony

    To develop a solid budget first the state has to cut spending. One area that will be difficult to do but neccessary is cut back on money to illegal imigrants. The state can put a timeframe on this say 5 years which would give the state some time to lower the deficit. Then at that 5 yr mark the state can have voters decide on whether to extend those cuts or to reimplement that spending.

    Another cut is from wasteful programs which there are many. Also, just like me & most of the workers in CA, lets have state employees contribute a higher amount to their benefits including pensions which would also be a significant budget savings for the state. Most of the companies I deal with or that my clients deal with have cut pension plans completely and those that didn’t reduced the amount the company contributes significantly. Why are state employees exempt from these type of cutbacks. Im sorry but its not fair to complain that the state doesn’t have money for services but then not be willing to make these cuts.

    I to also commend Brown on sticking to his campaign pledges. He bashed this budget by State Democrats but then commended them on working on it whereas he bashed Republicans for not working with Democrats. That part I didn’t like since its “talking out of both sides of your mouth.” If he & the rest of us think the Democrat budget was garbage then we can’t applaud them on a half-a&& job. If they had put something solid together then we could. Also, Republicans didn’t agree with this budget so the said so while proposing alternatives that they said would be supported, however the Democrats ignored them & got around a majority vote so they could get a paycheck.

    Remember, if a budget wasn’t passed by Jun 15th, they wouldn’t get a pay check until it did. Republicans said multiple times that they won’t sign something to get a paycheck if it won’t help the state even though their spouses would be upset. Democrats demonstated that they care more about their pocket books then they do about yours & mine.

    Again, cudos to Gov Brown & Republicans in CA for standing up for what is right for CA & keeping to their word. Those seem to be rare qualities in politics these days.

  • Frank

    How about passing a similar law in California which was passed in Wisconsin for dealing with public employees unions? Our legislature and the governor would never pass such a law, but the people can and should use the ballot initiative to do it. The public employees should pay their share during tough economic times instead of wanting everyone else to pay more for their fat pay and benefits.

    • william

      This whole thing about going after peoples pensions is not right. These are working people and they have a right to expect what they were promised. We need to raise corporate taxes, enforce laws and arrest anyboy who pays illegal immigrants under the table and go after welfare fraud. There’s plenty of places to get more revenue and I am totally against going after public employees who make and honest living

      • Anthony

        William, I agree with you on illegal immigrants and we have to stop paying for them right away. Also agree on welfare fraud.

        On the corp taxes we can’t as thousands of CA businesses have left the state to TX and other states since it is far more profitable for them to be there due to CA state taxes & regulations such as emissions. (FYI i completely agree that we need to protect the environment but not at the expense of job for hardworking CAs).

        Disagree with you also on public employees. Private employees in most industries and at most companies have lost pension benefits for new hires. We need to do the same to new hires of public employees. Also, public employees need to pay more toward their health benefits since they pay way less then private employees. And none of that is unfair as it is inline with industry. If people don’t like it then don’t work for the state and find a job in the private sector where you will still pay more for your benefits and have no pension.

        These are hard times & we need to start acting like it is not acting like its no big deal and it will pass. If we don’t this could linger for years to come.

  • william

    Good for Jerry Brown going against his own party who really are way too liberal with giveaways. And Good for Jerry to stand up to the Republicans who have the audacity to deny letting the people vote on whether they want a tax extension. The Dems are too nice which in this case is a liability and the Republicans are just corrupt and evil. I wouldn’t want to be in the governors shoes right now but I give him Kudos for hanging in there and vetoing this budge.

    • Anthony

      William, didn’t you see above that Senate Republican leader Bob Dutton said Senate Republicans provided Governor Brown and the Democrats a pathway to a bi-partisan budget solution that would have allowed voters to decide on taxes, meaningful pension reform and a hard spending cap,” Dutton said. “On March 25, Governor Brown said no and broke off budget negotiations with Republicans.”

      So, actually its the audacity the Democrats who aren’t willing to work with the Republicans and in fact stopped working with them.

  • Joe

    Liberals can’t magic their way into fiscal sanity. Tax increase is not an option so what else can the Democrats do?

  • Chad

    Jerry’s got BALLS. The lazy Legislators should have done their job right the first time. However, does this mean they don’t get paid while they have to re-craft a budget??

  • mark

    Let me give a little pearl of wisdom, almost anybody in favor of allowing the public workers union to stay and keep what they have is benefiting from them somehow, how can you let 5% of the workforce set policy for what financially affects 100%, its just simple 2nd grade math, no mater how hard you try, making us pay more now is just plain stupid ( I’m sorry for the last comment, but I suffer fools not at all ) we cannot sustain this financial path, you wait, when the crunch comes you will see such in fighting from all these unions, trying to get whatever is left. The time is not coming… late its here.

  • dm

    “It also contains legally questionable maneuvers, costly borrowing and unrealistic savings,” Brown added.

    You like your union benefits plan to prison guards that will cost the state countless billions. I guess the bozos in this state deserve what he dishes out.

    Passed by the dems, then vetoed… so now everyone can get their pay…. hmmm

  • LaLa

    Stop attacking state workers and attack the people you vote into office! When huge retailers and others types of businesses have financial issues they oust the people at the top who are in charge of proper management, they don’t attack and try to place all the burden on the workers. State employees over the years have taken paycuts, went w/o raises and endured continuous increases in retirement/health contributions, been furloughed and more than once NOT BEEN PAID until there was a budget.

    EDUCATE yourselves, there are over 60 state agencies called SPECIAL FUND agencies which mean they generate their OWN revenue. So the State/taxpayers are not undertaking the full burden of paying for the employment costs associated with employees of these agencies. Why do you think Special Fund agencies were suing Arnold when he furloughed the entire state workforce, because pay for these employees did NOT come from the General Fund.

    Many of these agencies have their reserves raided by the State, small agencies have had $2-4 million taken at a time & have yet to see that money returned. So if all of these state agencies can manage to have millions in reserve and have the money ripped away from them from the state, the real anger should be with the people on top mismanging the overall state budget NOT the employees.

    We have a agency called the Uninsured Employers Fund where people ADMIT they worked under the table and paid no state/fed income tax, yet when they win settlements against their employers that had no insurance we do not penalize these people and take out of the settlement the taxes they failed to pay while the worked under the table. We did not penalize the employer monetarily or criminally. Here are folks admitting to tax evasion yet we pay them as opposed to collectin what they owe ?! FIX the system & quit bashing the people who have no control & are far from the problem

  • mark

    So LaLa are you a state employee or family member?

  • Anthony

    So LaLa then since Democrats have been in the majority in both the CA state senate & CA state assembly by a wide margin for decades. Then your saying we should get rid of them and put Republicans in their place. Otherwise, a new Democrat taking over for another Demcrat will just continue down the same path.

    And also teachers, fire, public works, etc are paid through taxes. FYI

  • shoe

    Way to go JB!
    Finally showing some cajones.
    (and PLEASE don’t tax my purchases on Amazon!)

  • Lisa O'

    “Cudos to Gov Brown & Republicans in CA for standing up for what is right for CA & keeping to their word. Those seem to be rare qualities in politics these days.”

    I wanted to use this phrase, already written, as iit sums up my feelings!

  • upyours

    Since A$$brained Brown was already bent over for the prison guards the Legislature felt they might as well slip him another one … or two.

  • To Pay Or Not To Pay: Controller Says No ‘Authority’ To Challenge Budget Vote « CBS Los Angeles

    […] Brown said on Thursday he vetoed the proposed budget over what he called “legally questionable maneuvers, costly borrowing and unrealistic savings”. […]

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