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CAPITOL JOURNAL

California's GOP lawmakers should do the budget math

To avoid raising taxes and still balance the books in Sacramento, you'd have to virtually shut down state government.

February 16, 2009|GEORGE SKELTON

What many people don't realize is that around three-fourths of the state's general fund flows out to schools and local governments, much of it because of voter-passed laws.

But there is another place to look for savings: You could cut off all state money to higher education -- the two university systems and the community colleges. That would save the remaining $16 billion.

Don't like any of the above -- all those firings and slamming college doors on kids?

Instead, you could eliminate virtually all state money for healthcare and social services -- grants for the aged, blind and disabled, assistance for the homebound, medical care for the poor, mental health treatment, welfare. . . . No exceptions.

Of course, you'd then be turning away tons of money from Washington, which shares the costs. And you would be violating some federal laws. But there, it's done. You've avoided a tax increase. What a state!

Hopefully, enough Republican lawmakers will courageously follow their leaders and do the math.

--

george.skelton@latimes.com

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