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Jerry Brown to unveil $14-billion water project

For months, Jerry Brown has been talking about plans for an ambitious state water project, updating the plan first passed by his father, former Gov. Pat Brown. For the first time Friday, Brown put a number on the new proposal -- $14 billion.

The governor mentioned the price tag during a Friday morning interview with CBS' Charlie Rose. Brown defended the ambitious new water proposal and his $68-billion plan to build a high-speed train system in California, despite the state's $15.7-billion deficit.

"You've got to build to accommodate the growth," Brown said. "California is not stopping. We're not some tired country in Europe."

Brown spokesman Gil Duran did not provide any additional details about when the water plan would be made public.

On the day of the Facebook public offering, Brown championed California as a place of innovation, saying, "This is where they invented Facebook.... This is still the Wild West."

That earned a gentle correction from Rose, who pointed out, "Facebook was invented in Cambridge, Mass."

In typical fashion, Brown talked about fiscal austerity and quoted Latin phrases, earning a smile from Rose. Brown also used the interview to defend his tax-hike initiative, which voters will likely vote on this fall, to raise levies on sales and higher-incomes. Failure to do so, he said, would result in billions less for schools and public universities.

"One way or another we have to balance our budget," Brown said.

You can watch the entire interview here.

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-- Anthony York in Sacramento

 
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