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‘California is Back,’ Brown says in State of the State

“The message this year is clear: California has once again confounded our critics. We have wrought in just two years a solid and enduring budget.”

In an upbeat state of the state address California Governor Jerry Brown claims what many governors cannot,,, a balanced budget.

“Against those who take pleasure, singing of our demise, California did the impossible.”

The governor credited the state legislature for cutting billions out of the state budget  and reducing the state’s long term pension liabilities.  He also thanked California voters for passing proposition 30, reminding lawmakers not to waste it.

“We have promises to keep. And the most important is the one we made to the voters if Proposition 30 passed: that we would guard jealously the money temporarily made available.
This means living within our means and not spending what we don`t have. Fiscal discipline is not the enemy of our good intentions but the basis for realizing them.”

The State Senate’s GOP leader Bob Huff whose district includes part of Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernandino county said of the governors address:

“He talks fiscal conservatism; but the reality is the budget increases 25 percent in the next three years.”

And in fact, while talking about education, jobs, and climate change, governor brown is calling for a special session on healthcare to implement the federal affordable care act.

“The ultimate cost of expanding our healthcare system under the affordable care act is unknown. Ignoring such known unknowns would be folly, just as it would be not pay down our wall of debt.”

Still, the governor vowed to move forward on several ambitious infrastructure projects. Refurbishing the state’s water system at a cost of 14 billion dollars, and the 65 billion dollar high speed rail linking L.A. and San Francisco.

“Yes, it is bold but so is everything else about California. It has taken great perseverance to get us this far. I signed the original high speed rail Authority in 1982, over 30 years ago. In 2013, we will finally break ground and start construction.”

“California is back, its budget is balanced, and we are on the move. Let`s go out and get it done.”

California Republican Party chair. Tom Del Baccaro’s reaction to state of the state address…

“..the Governor wasn’t so much kicking the can down the road as he was hiding the can entirely.”
“.. Our cities are going bankrupt because they can’t pay off pension obligations, 4.4 million taxpayers have left the state since 1998 while job creators are fleeing the worst business climate in the nation.”
“..continuing government waste and abuse undermines any promise of fiscal restraint. It’s time for a reality check.”

– Glen Walker, KTLA News