Assemblymember Bonta Offers Response to Governor’s Budget Revision

Friday, May 12, 2017

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 11, 2017

Assemblymember Bonta Offers Response to Governor’s Budget Revision

 

(Sacramento, CA) – Assemblymember Rob Bonta issued the following statement in response to Governor Brown’s May Budget Revision:

Overview:

“The Governor’s May Budget Revision reflects several important and positive changes from his January budget proposal.  This proposed budget contains strong additional funding for K-12 education in the amount of $1.4 billion.  It also contains new funding for roads and other transportation needs under SB 1.  Overall, this spending plan will help protect more of California’s children, seniors and other vulnerable members of our communities.  There continue to be areas of concern that will require further discussion as part of the normal budget process, especially in the face of so much uncertainty coming from the Trump Administration.  While the Governor is wise to remain cautious on our fiscal outlook, I will be actively engaged in healthy discussions on how we should prioritize those limited funds to reflect both our needs and our values.

Childcare Funding:

“I’m pleased to see the Governor has proposed to restore his previously-suggested childcare funding cuts. This additional money will allow nearly 3,000 children and their working parents, who had been threatened under the cuts, to have access to safe child care. Our children deserve to be given a strong start in life and that includes access to quality childcare.”

Immigration:

“The May Budget Revision reflects an increase of $15 million from the General Fund to provide urgently-needed legal assistance to members of our immigrant communities facing deportation proceedings.  This additional funding is beneficial but we must also allocate money for training and resources for public defenders to effectively represent their immigrant clients in order to prevent avoidable deportations. This legal assistance is addressed in my legislation, AB 3 and in SB 6 by Senator Ben Hueso.”

Fighting President Trump’s Dangerous Agenda:

“I’m pleased to see an additional $6 million allocated for the Attorney General to defend California’s values in the face of near-weekly threats by the Trump Administration.  Under the leadership of Attorney General Xavier Becerra, California will fight in the courts to protect our people and our interests including healthcare, immigration, and the environment against these unlawful threats of funding cuts and other attacks. We did not ask for this fight, but we will not back down in the defense of our California values.”

Cannabis:

“The Governor has included significant increases in funding for the state departments responsible for implementing  the Medical Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (MCRSA) and Proposition 64. This funding will allow the state to have the resources necessary to be up and running with a safe and regulated marketplace in California by January 1, 2018. However, this funding does not come without conditions and it is imperative that as California reconciles our cannabis laws, we retain important environmental, consumer, and public safety protections provided under MCRSA.”

Affordable Housing:

“I’m disappointed the Governor underestimates the leadership role the state can play in fixing our housing affordability crisis.  The Governor failed to restore $400 million in already-approved funding for affordable housing.  Housing is arguably the most critical issue for our constituents and a central component of our collective well-being.  Meanwhile, local communities are rightly asserting their own leadership by passing bonds such as Measure A1 in Alameda County.  Solving the complex housing crisis will take bold solutions from every level of government, the private sector and the non-profit/faith-based communities.  We owe our full pledge of action to the people of California to help provide a roof over all Californians’ heads and create an affordable California.”

College Affordability:

“I’m disappointed the Governor still wants to eliminate the Middle Class Scholarship for our college students and their families.  The Middle Class Scholarship helps those California families caught in the middle with little relief from the ever-increasing price tag on a college education. This cut is a move in the wrong direction.  We should be advocating for bold solutions such as AB 1356 of which I am joint authoring with Assemblymember Susan Talamantes Eggman. AB 1356 will provide new revenue to fund tuition-free public college for California’s students through an additional 1% tax on millionaires.  We must change the system that excludes many of our young people from higher education or saddles those who can attend with crushing amounts of student debt.”

Bail Reform:

“California stands ready to take a bold step to reform our unjust money bail system that creates unequal justice under the law. The current system favors the wealthy and punishes the poor.  My bill, AB 42, and SB 10 by Senator Bob Hertzberg will ensure our criminal justice system is not tainted by wealth. The initial costs of reform will be offset by long-term savings. We can and must safely and fairly reform California’s money bail system.”

Assemblymember Rob Bonta represents the 18th Assembly District, which includes Oakland, Alameda, and San Leandro and is the Assistant Majority Leader and Chair of the Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus.

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