Calif. Fiscal Outlook Marks 'Dramatic Turnaround'

Thursday, 15 Nov 2012 11:13 AM

By Alec Weisman

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California's fiscal status beyond 2014 is looking pretty good, according to a new report from the state's legislative analyst that projects billions in budget surpluses.
According to legislative analyst Mac Turner the projection marks a "dramatic turnaround" for the state, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday. But Turner warned lawmakers against resuming spending because the report failed to take into account the costs of state retirement-related programs in the future.   
The report also found the state would experience a budget deficit of only a $1.9 billion next year, a stunning decrease from the $42 billion shortfall projected  back in February, 2009.
The 2013 estimate also marks the first time since 2006 that the projected deficit has fallen to single digits.
Turner suggested that an improving state economy, a spate of budget cuts, and passage of Gov. Jerry Brown’s recent tax increase initiative, Proposition 30, were key to the turnaround.
Brown hailed the report as a validation of “the hard work the state has done to cut its deficit and balance its budget over the long term."
"California is now on the path for a fair and sustainable budget as long as we continue to exercise fiscal discipline and pay down debt," he said.

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