In response to the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) long-term fiscal forecast released yesterday, Chris Hoene, executive director of the California Budget Project, released the following statement:
“The new LAO forecast shows that California is well positioned to turn the corner on a decade of severe budget challenges and begin reinvesting in areas that are critical to our state’s economy and to the health and general well-being of communities statewide. Due in part to the new revenues approved by California voters earlier this month, the state has an opportunity to restore balance to the budget and begin rebuilding its key public systems and programs.
“But even with this brighter outlook, it’s important to remember that many years of deep spending cuts have hit virtually all areas of the budget, from education to health care. With our state just starting to recover from the Great Recession and many families still feeling the effects of the downturn, we need to provide a strong safety net and ensure sufficient funding for key services and supports — such as child care — for individuals struggling to find and retain work.
“Moving forward, state policymakers should strive for budget decisions that permanently place the state on solid financial footing while also reinvesting in public systems that are essential to all Californians and to broadly shared economic growth.”