Peter Grigsby, Office of the Governor
It’s a New Year and time to start fresh on state budget negotiations. That was Governor Schwarzenegger’s plea to lawmakers just a day after he vetoed the Democrats’ majority vote budget plan.
Governor Schwarzenegger is urging both Republican and Democratic leaders to return to the negotiating table. That’s after weeks of unsuccessful talks just between Schwarzenegger and Democrats. This week Democrats sent him their plan that was approved on a majority vote to solve nearly half of the 40-billion plus budget shortfall. Schwarzenegger promptly vetoed it. He says it’s time to start again.
“I have faith in them that they will come to an agreement. I just hope that we can turn it around. Because up until now they’ve spent all their energy on not negotiating. And what I want to do is turn that energy around and spend all that energy on negotiating …”
The Governor wants talks to focus on his latest budget proposal—that includes billions in tax hikes and spending cuts. California’s in danger of running out of cash as early as next month—which could mean the state would end up paying bills with I.O.U’s.
The Governor says he will call a so-called “Big Five” meeting for Thursday to talk with the top legislative leaders.