California State Budget

Fresno, CA, USA While everyone agrees state lawmakers have to find a way to get California out of its current economic mess, some say the way the budget proposal stands...may make matters worse. Others said we have no choice.

Fixing California's $42-billion dollar deficit won't happen overnight. But, many hope Saturday's vote is a good start.

"Sometimes it takes a catastrophe to change things and I'm not sure we're not on the brink of a catastrophe statewide." Said Al smith who's the president of the Fresno Chamber Of Commerce. He said California's financial problems have impacted Fresno County for quite some time. "All of the services that rely on state funding are all being impacted about it not only by the fact that they're probably going to be curtailed in what they receive but also they can't plan because they don't know what they're going to receive."

If the current budget passes, it will include at least three tax hikes. Adding one penny to the sales tax, and extra 12 cents per gallon of gasoline and nearly doubling the vehicle license fee.

We spoke with valley residents who are divided on the issue.

Tammy Lewis of Fresno said, "doubling our fees? it's hard enough for us to make it now."

Betty Dotson of Fresno said, "I'm just hoping they don't go that route, but if they have to go that route."

Chester of Fresno said, "as long as the politicians in Sacramento choose to be irresponsible with our money, we have no choice but to, we're at their mercy."

A 2/3 vote is required to reach a budget solution. But, not everyone is on board.

Governor Schwarzenegger has said he will lay off 20,000 state workers if lawmakers don't pass a budget.


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