Brown Reaffirms Fiscal Emergency

Steven Greenhut: There’s a good reason the state declares a state of emergency during mudslides, fires and other natural disasters — to reduce the number of regulations in place as clean-up efforts proceed, and also to unleash federal funds for the clean up. I’m not sure the purpose of Gov. Jerry Brown’s reaffirmation of the Dec. 6 emergency declaration because of the state’s fiscal crisis. This is part of the governor’s ongoing effort to convince Californians that the state’s massive budget deficit is the equivalent of a natural disaster, the apparent result of economic forces out of the state government’s control. But indeed this crisis is man-made — made not by any men, but by the men and women who misgovern our state year after year.

California legislators outspend revenues in flush years and down years. They just can’t stop spending. Brown is engaged in a massive public relations campaign to convince Californians that they must raise taxes or deal with severe cuts in services. He rarely talks about reforming existing services. Where is his push for pension reform, for instance? He made slight reference to pensions at a League of California Cities meeting in Sacramento, but his budget has no pension-reform measures included within it. Where is the talk of contracting out and privatization, of cutting back on the many unnecessary government employees (check out the LAO’s reference to the many Caltrans employees with nothing to do, for instance).

The proclamation is part of his campaign to convince Californians to pay more money to support the ongoing system, and don’t get too caught up in his symbolic cuts in personal staff and cell phones.

Here is the proclamation:

FISCAL EMERGENCY PROCLAMATION

BY THE GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

WHEREAS on the 6th of December, 2010, pursuant to Section 10(f) of Article IV of the Constitution of the State of California, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger; proclaimed a fiscal emergency; and

WHEREAS that proclamation contained certain findings supporting the declaration of a fiscal emergency; and,

WHEREAS on January 10, 2011, I released my proposed budget for the State of California and that budget reflected current economic, budgetary, and cash information; and

WHEREAS without corrective action the combined operating deficit for Fiscal Year 2010-11 and Fiscal Year 2011-12 is $25.4 billion; and

WHEREAS revenues are $3.1 billion lower than were projected at the time of the 2010 Budget Act; and

WHEREAS the passage, in November 2010, of Proposition 22 created an additional budget shortfall of $1.6 billion; and

WHEREAS decisive action is required to solve the State’s persistent and severe budget problems, continue economic recovery, promote job growth, and preserve public education and the quality of life for all Californians.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR, Governor of the State of California, in accordance with Section 10(f) of Article IV of the Constitution of the State of California, HEREBY DETERMINE that General Fund revenues for Fiscal Year 2010-11 will decline substantially below the estimate of General Fund revenues upon which the Budget was based, and General Fund expenditures will increase substantially above the estimate of General Fund revenues, and further, that this will create a carry-over deficit affecting the cash reserves and the budget for Fiscal Year 2011-12.

I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR, Governor of the State of California, HEREBY DECLARE and REAFFIRM that a fiscal emergency exists.

I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR, Governor of the State of California, HEREBY IDENTIFY THE NATURE OF THIS FISCAL EMERGENCY to be the projected budget imbalance for Fiscal Year 2010-11, which is causing budgetary and cash deficits in Fiscal Year 2011-12.

I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR, Governor of the State of California, further determine, in accordance with the findings set forth herein, and the legislation that I am proposing to the Legislature in connection with this proclamation, that this proclamation dated January 20, 2011, supersedes the proclamations issued on December 6, 2010, for the purposes of Section 10(f) of Article IV of the Constitution.

JAN. 20, 2011

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  1. David from Oceanside
    David from Oceanside 21 January, 2011, 16:35

    A fiscal emergency is when politicians run out of our money to pay off those that put and keep them in office.

    California Sovereign Default Now!

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