Last week, California’s Democratic leaders sent Governor Jerry Brown a majority-vote budget plan, beating a mandated June 15 deadline to have a balanced budget in place. Less than 24 hours later, Brown vetoed the plan and said “he wouldn’t sign a budget filled with gimmicks.”
Now, after reviewing the plan, State Controller John Chiang has ordered to halt paychecks for all state lawmakers, determining that the budget was not balanced.
Chiang said the proposal left a hole of about $1.9 billion, most of which came from underfunding education by $1.3 billion. The plan also counted on hospital fees, taxes on managed-care plans and vehicle registration charges, but the Legislature never passed the bills to collect those revenues.
Chiang has the authority to take this step under Proposition 25, which was passed last November. The measure states that lawmakers don’t get their salary or living expenses if they miss their budget deadline of June 15 each year.
Salary for most lawmakers will be cut between $250-300 a day and most will also lose out on a $142 per diem for travel and living expenses.
Meanwhile, wrangling over the budget continues as Governor Brown continues to try to get the necessary votes for a ballot measure that would extend recent take hikes to help close the over $9 billion shortfall.
Photo Credit: Sascha Bruck, via Wikimedia Commons