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Schwarzenegger urges broad changes to budget, tax, pension systems

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, delivering his final State of the State address to lawmakers this morning, will ask them to work with him on broad changes to the state's budget, tax and pension systems, to require that more money be spent on higher education than on prisons, and to pass initiatives he says would create new jobs.

According to his remarks prepared for delivery, Schwarzenegger will also demand that the federal government fix a system that he says gives back to California less in federal tax dollars than it spends, while other states get more.

"We can no longer ignore what is owed to us, or what we are forced to spend on federal mandates," the governor is expected to say. "We need to work with the feds so that we can fix the flawed formula that demands that states spend money they do not have."

He will also ask lawmakers to help him campaign for passage of an $11-billion bond to fix the state's water system, part of the deal they reached with Schwarzenegger in November.

--Michael Rothfeld in Sacramento

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Comments () | Archives (12)

Not very likely anybody wants to be working with Schwarzenegger at this point. If he wasn't able to pass a slew of initiatives at the high-point of his governorship, what makes him think he'll be able to do so now? Why don't we save the money to be spent on these doomed initiatives into shoring up our state's crumbling infrastructure(education, transportation, correctional facilities, etc.)

The tax code in California will remain a boom and bust proposition until the legislature gets the courage to revisit Prop. 13. Relying on sales and income tax for revenue does not create a stable tax and makes it impossible for the government to meet the needs of it's constituents. Under the current system revenue falls as demand for services rises. At the very least we need to have a two-teir system for residential and commercial properties.

What we need is a state Fair tax and less union and government jobs with ridiculous benefits and pensions that ordinary hard working, tax paying citizens get no benefit from and have have to endlessly support. Sorry for the run-on sentence.

Amazing. This travesty whereby California receives less in federal $$ spent in the state than it sends to Washington, has been true for many years. And only now it's getting attention?? Further, because of the steeply progressive federal tax system ( fully supported by Democrats), California ( as a high income state) is hit the hardest. So, OF COURSE California is getting robbed in this deal !! Where are our wonderful Democrats ( Boxer, Feinstein, Pelosi, Waxman, Waters) when we need them? Answer: spending all their time on legislation that will only add further burdens to the collapsing state economy.

So nice to hear that "we should be spending more on higher education than on prisons"..... Arnie seems to be the only republican who genuinely cares about the people, and not just big businesses that line their coffers.

I think the Governor is right on with his assessments. I also think telling people NO is not the strong suit of most politicians. But he says it like it is! Sometimes you have to cut off a limb to save the body, as long as its not the head.

Ok, what does he want to do to our pensions? This article didn't mention any specifics! He had better not mess with our pensions! Those of us who rely on them can't take a cut. We depend on them. We served our municipalities, counties and the state with dedication, and now he wants to slap us in the face with cuts!? How dare he even try! We supported him in both elections, and this is how we are thanked! Thank God for term limits! Soon we won't have to deal with his nonsense!

Why don't we do drug testing on all persons receiving welfare/medi-cal? Lets get some of that money back. When you are hired nowadays you have to submit to these tests, so should these people.

Peggy, the days of pensions for state employees are quickly coming to an end, and rightfully so. It's happened in the private sector and entitlement programs are simply becoming too expensive to maintain, especially as life expectancies continue to gain years. Those who work for municipalities will have to do what those in the private sector need to do. Save money for your own retirment, not rely on tax payers to supplement your "golden" years.

Pensions = social security for the select few supported by ALL taxpayers... fair?

Mentioning in higher education in elevated terms is nothing but a ploy to diffuse brewing unrest on our campuses. The Gubernator are hoping that by making meaningless promises about future lukewarm reforms, he will be able to distract students' attention from the real problems that beset California and its universities.

Don't get so excited, Peggy. Weren't you listening to the speech? The Governor reiterated that it is not possible, both legally and morally, to cut the pensions of retirees and employees who are currently working. Any proposed changes to come about in the pension system will affect new hires only.


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