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.