Sunday, October 3, 2010

Took Only One Day

Yesterday I predicted that the new California budget would stink. If rumor is to be believed, I was wrong, it stinks to high heave. W.C. beats me to the scoop with this great synopsis:

Step 1: Assume robust revenue growth.

Step 2: Assume huge federal bailout.

Step 3: Sell off state assets to plug this year's budget, and don't worry about the fact that you'll increase future deficits by having to lease back those same assets.
Proof that no serious budget cutting will be forthcoming comes from the AP article:

Democrats said they were able to minimize cuts to schools, child care, welfare and other social programs, without giving details even to rank-and-file lawmakers who were briefed during conference calls Friday and Saturday.
So we aren't cutting back on any of the big ticket items that load up the budget. It's just a matter of time before the state defaults on some debt. The only good news is that both sides appear to acknowledge that pensions are a big part of the problem.

Both sides claimed victory on one of the biggest sticking points: pension reform.

Democrats expect the Republican governor to complete negotiations within days to win pension concessions from Service Employees International Union Local 1000.

The 95,000-member local represents nine of the 15 state bargaining units that lack a contract. If it agrees to benefit rollbacks, Democrats expect the remaining bargaining units to go along.

Once they do, Democrats could meet Schwarzenegger's demand that they repeal an 11-year-old law that authorized increases in public employee benefits.

The above paragraphs are all speculation, so I don't expect results soon, but at least there is an acknowledgment of the biggest problem.

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