As revenues plummet, Gov. Newsom proposes cutting $6.1 billion from California's budget

Newsom said the economic impact like this hasn't "been felt like this since the Great Depression."
SACRAMENTO -- Gov. Gavin Newsom released his revised May budget Thursday afternoon, estimating California will see "unprecedented" unemployment numbers reaching nearly 25% amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Newsom is proposing to cut $6.1 billion from a variety of programs as part of next year's budget. California is facing a projected deficit of $54.3 billion.

Newsom's 2020-2021 budget estimates unemployment will climb to nearly 25%.

Newsom said the economic impact like this hasn't "been felt like this since the Great Depression."

4.6 million Californians have filed for unemployment since March 12, Newsom said.

"We are at a time that's simply unprecedented," he said.

During the Great Recession in the late 2000s, 2.2 million Californians were unemployed, with the peak in 2010.

To balance the shortfall, Newsom is proposing to cut $6.1 billion from a variety of programs as part of next year's budget.

He says the budget prioritizes public education, public health and public safety. Newsom's Thursday forecast estimates tax revenues will drop by about a quarter.

Under Newsom's proposal to balance the budget, 16% of the deficit, nearly $9 billion would be covered by the state's rainy day fund. Another 15% from the Federal CARES Act, 16% would be from cancelling programs set to go into effect, 19% from deferring payments and 26% is a hypothetical - hoping the federal government chips in about $14 billion.

The last 8% is a cut in state spending, including a 10% paycut for all state employees, including the governor and his staff.

After a record budget surplus that allow programs to grow, Newsom says it breaks his heart to have to make cuts.

Combined with money from two other funds, he's proposing using $8.8 billion in reserve funds for the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
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California Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing to cut $6.1 billion from a variety of programs as part of next year's budget.

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