For the first time in six years both houses of the legislature have passed a state budget *before* the fiscal year deadline. It’s one that takes advantage of a seven and a half billion dollar windfall to fund schools, pay down debt, build up the state’s reserve, and increase funding for some social programs, like foster care. Democratic Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez attributed it to trust between the two parties – joking that some Republican ideals had rubbed off on him:
“And I’m actually a believer now, I’m a fiscal conservative, I believe in this stuff. We gotta get out of the fiscal mess we’re in because it’s the only way to strengthen the state of CA.”
But some Republicans – like Assemblyman Rick Keene - say the budget worsens the state’s long-term fiscal problems:
“The difficulty is that with 14 billion dollars in additional revenue in a 24 month period we’re going backwards on the deficit.”
The Governor is expected to sign the budget by the end of the week.