(Sacramento) - California continues to face challenges due to COVID-19. Thanks to a one-time boost in revenues, the state is in a position to not only reverse some budget cuts made last year, but also maintain critical health and human services programs. Unfortunately, however, deficits are projected in subsequent years. With that in mind, Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee, unveiled his 2021-22 Budget Blueprint, Preserve | Respond | Protect | Recover, calling for the restoration of funding in key priority areas to assist struggling Californians, while developing ways to stimulate the economy and grow reserves for future downturns.
“This is a time when people need their government the most. Until we have widespread vaccination rates, we will need to keep helping families and small businesses and provide a path to economic recovery,” said Ting. “But we can’t do this alone. Like other states, we need the federal government to step up with some relief.”
Among the highlights of Preserve | Respond | Protect | Recover:
- Stabilization of critical programs and services: Repay school/community college deferrals; restore cuts to UC, CSU, Courts, Housing, Child Support, Health & Human Services; retain reserves
- Persistent COVID-19 response: Continued investment in public health infrastructure; safe reopening of schools; protect vulnerable populations in nursing homes and prisons; workplace safety enforcement; greater transparency & oversight of all disaster-related funding
- Support For Working Families: Ongoing funding to head off homelessness and expand assistance programs; implementation of TK-For-All; increase college financial aid and refund amounts for California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) filers; safeguard communities from wildfires
- Economic Recovery: Prevent evictions and support mom-and-pop landlords; modernization of the Employment Development Department (EDD); more retraining programs for laid off workers; establish a Climate Crisis investment plan and infrastructure strategy to stimulate green jobs while benefiting low-income communities
The Budget Blueprint is here: 2021-22 Budget Blueprint