Capitol on edge as Gov. Jerry Brown pushes taxes, budget cuts
Sacramento was in a grim mood as Gov. Jerry Brown made the pitch for tax hikes on Thursday, delivering boxes of petitions to election officials to place his tax initiative on the ballot in November.
The budget deficit has widened, thanks to a mix of lagging tax revenue and higher-than-expected spending, and advocates and labor leaders are bracing for steeper cuts than the governor proposed in January.
Brown is expected to unveil his revised spending plan Monday, and he said Thursday that it's "going to be a difficult day in Sacramento."
Details of the new budget proposal are being tightly guarded, but lobbyists tracking the discussions say they expect steeper cuts to health and welfare programs.
"All we've been told is that it's really bad," said Vanessa Cajina from the Western Center on Law and Poverty, which advocates for the poor. "Essentially anything in the safety net is up for grabs right now."
-- Chris Megerian and Anthony York in Sacramento
Photo: Gov. Jerry Brown and his wife, Anne Gust Brown, turn in boxes of petititions for his tax initiative. Credit: Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press