Budget

SF Chronicle: Reading between the lines of Newsom’s ‘deferred’ budget: Screw the kids

Shohei Ohtani is the only major league baseball player who can hit and pitch at an elite level.

Perhaps he should manage California’s state budget, too.

Govern For California

Budget

Mr. Newsom Makes My Case

The Newsom Administration is circulating a rebuttal to my criticism of the Governor’s Proposed 2024-25 Budget. As a reminder, that criticism is that Mr. Newsom proposes to draw on the Rainy Day Fund even though the country is not in a recession and doing so would seriously impair the state’s ability to preserve public services in a recession.

David Crane

K-12 EducationPrison Spending

Some Questions For Your Leaders

It’s election season. Citizens looking for questions to ask of candidates or state officials might consider the following two.

David Crane

Budget

The Kounalakis Tax Increase

Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis and every other candidate for governor in 2026 should be paying very close attention to the Multiyear Forecast in Governor Newsom’s Proposed Budget.

David Crane

Budget

Has Mr. Newsom Resurrected A Gimmick?

Next week my students will start reading through Governor Newsom’s proposed state budget for the next fiscal year, which was released today. Before they do, I’ll be sending them a 2019 column from the LA Times entitled, “The one-day, $1-billion California budget gimmick that has lasted for almost a decade,” which is about a budgetary maneuver employed in 2009.

David Crane

Budget

Mr. Newsom’s LBJ Moment

Last month, I wrote about the unique opportunity Governor Newsom has with his next budget to “reinvent government” as he called for in his 2014 book, Citizenville. Next week we will learn if he plans to do so.

David Crane

Budget

Decoding CAʼs Budget

Last week the Orange County Register published a lengthy article about California’s skyrocketing spending and budget deficit that included some comments from the Department of Finance and Legislative Analyst’s Office that might lead readers to conclude incorrectly that the governor and legislators don’t have authority over much spending. Some of the comments are non-controversial but some incorrectly imply a lack of authority over statutory spending, some are imprecise about funding sources, and some are striking in their omissions.

David Crane

BudgetCalls to Action: Legislators

Citizenville: Now Is The Time

In 2013, then-Lieutenant-Governor Gavin Newsom published a book entitled “Citizenville” in which he argued for a government that kept pace with changes elsewhere in society. Asserting that “we must inject a more innovative, entrepreneurial mind-set into government,” Mr. Newsom wrote that “we simply cannot have a government that relies on bureaucracy and maintaining the status quo.” I hoped his vision would be realized. But a decade later, half of which Mr. Newsom has presided over as governor, California’s bureaucracy is bigger than ever, residents would be hard-pressed to point to a single innovation, and the status quo is still the status quo.

David Crane

Budget

Spending Growth In CA

General Fund Expenditures Per Capita have climbed 63.9% since Governor Newsom took office, growing at more than twice the annual rate at which those expenditures grew under Governor Brown (10.4% vs. 4.7%):

David Crane

Budget

Bad Budget News In California

Last Wednesday, the Commerce Department reported U.S. GDP grew at a 5.2% clip in the third quarter. The next day, Governor Newsom told a debate audience that the economy is “booming.” But Friday, California’s Legislative Analyst’s Office said that state tax revenues are falling far short of forecasts. When combined with General Fund spending that has grown more than 50 percent over the last five years, the drop in revenues portends another large budget deficit for California.

David Crane

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California

Mission

To counter special interest influence and to support like-minded organizations.