Republican senators blast budget bill as ‘irresponsible and unrealistic’

Yesterday, Democrats in the California legislature passed a placeholder state budget bill that represents little more than the hopes and dreams they have to spend money that may never come.

With a voter-imposed constitutional deadline to pass a budget bill by June 15, this shell budget enables them to continue receiving pay, but accomplishes little else. Even veteran journalist Dan Walters with CalMatters agrees with California Senate Republicans that today’s passage of a budget bill is a ‘budget charade’ and ‘will only pay lip service to the California Constitution, and may bear only a passing resemblance to the budget that will finally emerge sometime later.’

Just two years ago, California had a $100 billion surplus. This year, the state is looking at a $62 billion deficit resulting from overspending and failing to plan for the fluctuating revenue streams it relies on.

“Sadly, years of mismanagement coupled with this current spending plan will keep California on the path of deficits and unsustainable spending,” said Senator Roger Niello who serves as vice chair of the Senate Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review.

“The Democratic leadership’s placeholder budget fails to offer realistic solutions for the state’s massive deficit,” he said.

Yesterday’s placeholder budget bill seeks to address the deficit in part by raising taxes on California’s already burdened business community and through fund shifts, borrowing and delays.

“This so-called budget is little more than a shell game meant to hide the bleak truth of our financial situation,” said Senate Minority Leader Brian W. Jones .“Legislative Democrats continue to spend money we don’t have, on things we don’t need or want, and that’s how we see a $162 billion swing from surplus to deficit in just two years. Today’s budget allows them to continue perpetrating this fraud and represents a massive miscarriage of government’s duty to the people of this state.”

“We cannot continue to hurt California families by cutting programs they need to fund ones they don’t,” said Senator Rosilicie Ochoa Bogh. “This budget fails to reflect our values and needs, and it’s regrettable that everyday Californians will once again bear the burden of the majority party’s poor fiscal planning.”

A real budget needs to be enacted by June 30.