Politics & Government

California budget deal faces opposition at the ballot box

Opposition has emerged to several ballot measures that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders believe are essential to resolving the state's massive budget deficit.

There may never be a better time for opponents to pounce. Voters are angry about the economy, state budget and leadership in Sacramento, and seem willing to express their disgust through the six measures, according to a survey released Wednesday by the Public Policy Institute of California, or PPIC.

"I think this thing is going to go down because the people of this state have just about had it," said Ted Costa of People's Advocate, a taxpayer group. "They've had it with this governor and they've had it with this Legislature."

Leaders are counting on the May 19 measures to reduce the deficit by $5.8 billion. The nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office projects a new revenue shortfall of $8 billion, so if voters reject the ballot proposals the state would face a summer deficit of nearly $14 billion.

The California Nurses Association and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees announced their opposition in the past week, saying that Proposition 1A would force too many spending cuts in future years. The ballot measure would limit spending in good years but also increase taxes by $16 billion from 2011 to 2013.

Read the full story at sacbee.com