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Jerry Brown vetoes plan to tinker with 'trigger' cuts

September 16, 2011 |  2:38 pm

Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a measure Friday that would have required his administration to consult with top lawmakers before enacting midyear budget cuts.

"That's not a good idea," Brown chided Democratic lawmakers in a curt veto message.

The Democrats wanted to require Brown's office to consult with them before enacting the "trigger" cuts that will go into effect automatically if the state's tax revenues fall short. Brown and lawmakers bridged the final $4 billion of what began as a $25-billion state deficit by presuming a growing economy would produce more in revenues.

If those taxes don't materialize, up to $2.5 billion in cuts would occur automatically, including the option for local schools to reduce the academic year by up to a week.

"Why would we undermine the plan that has earned widespread respect and helped stabilize California’s finances?" Brown asked in his veto message. He added In a statement accompanying the veto that the bill, SB 6 X1, "would have undermined investor confidence in California."

Brown on Friday signed two other budget-related measures, SB 335 and AB 21 X1. They are expected to lower California's share of hospital and children's healthcare costs by hundreds of millions of dollars by drawing additional federal money into the state. 

-- Shane Goldmacher in Sacramento