Gov. Brown proposes spending cuts, continuing tax hikes Elections, posted by Editor, Mountain View Voice Online, on Jan 10, 2011 at 3:19 pm
Gov. Jerry Brown said today that he is proposing to close the state's $25.4 billion budget gap by cutting spending by $12.5 billion and extending temporary tax increases that were enacted under the Schwarzenegger's administration.
Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, January 10, 2011, 12:21 PM
Posted by Hardin, a resident of the Cuesta Park neighborhood, on Jan 10, 2011 at 3:19 pm
I applaud Governor Brown in getting a plan out quickly to address this priority issue. However, he missed the elephant in the room:
"Proposed spending reductions include...and $308 million for a reduction in take-home pay for state employees not currently covered under collective bargaining agreements."
The real savings opportunity is with renegotiation of the union labor collective bargaining contracts that determine wage, pension, and health benefits, which is distinctly not covered in this proposal.
It will be interesting to see how the governor addresses this, considering his close relationship with the unions.
This is the same issue that the Mountain View City Council, and City Manager need to deal with as well, if they hope to address the bleeding budget forecasts.
Posted by Hardin, a resident of the Cuesta Park neighborhood, on Jan 11, 2011 at 8:44 am
On a more positive note, I'm interested in the governor's initiative to redistribute some current State responsibilities back to local control, as this is a structural defect that has allowed for waste and inept management of resources, and allowed funding to fall victim to state politics. Past performance has shown that locally controlled funding can be better managed and spent to address the needs of the community.
Still, while proposing $12.5 billion in cuts, Brown has only touched the surface of his labor cost problem. At $300,000, that constitutes less than 3% of all cuts proposed, a token amount.
In any other business, companies understand that labor costs make up a majority portion of liabilities on the expense sheet, and address this with a reduction of benefits and/or layoffs. The State needs to seriously consider how it is going to manage its labor costs, instead of focusing primarily on cutting services and raising taxes/fees.
Once a bureaucracy exists only to support and sustain a growing bureaucracy, its lost its core function of serving the people, and relinquishes its justification for existence, in its current form.