Vice Chair of the Senate Budget Committee Senator Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber) issued the following statement regarding the Governor’s release of the May Revision to the State Budget:
“The Governor should be commended for proposing to set aside $1.6 billion for the Rainy Day fund; and to pay down $11 billion in debt but this is a mere 3 percent of the state’s $340 billion debt.
“Unfortunately, his budget also includes increased spending on permanent programs that will inevitably take us back to deficit spending.
“More money needs to be set aside for the Rainy Day Fund and for emergencies like wildfires, natural disasters and public safety.
“State revenues are forecast to increase by $2.4 billion. While this appears to be good news, this is a veneer generated by a temporary tax that was promised for education and public safety; and will expire in three years.
“The high speed rail from Merced to Bakersfield is a boondoggle not worthy of precious taxpayers’ dollars.
“In the coming months, the Legislature must rectify the Governor’s failure to help counties protect their citizens by providing more funding for realignment. Counties need money for rehabilitation, inmate housing and supervision, and court costs.
“The administration is releasing the second class of realignment prisoners, making our communities more dangerous. State leaders shouldn’t wait for a catastrophe before we fix this ill-conceived program.”