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Federal cuts could cost California billions

February 22, 2013|By Anthony York

SACRAMENTO -- Gov. Jerry Brown arrives in Washington today to meet with the nation's governors as federal leaders deal with a pending deadline for budget cuts that could damage California's fragile recovery.

The across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration could lead to cutbacks in defense, healthcare and other areas, putting California's fiscal health in danger.

Jason Sisney, a spokesman for the state's legislative analyst, said the cuts could mean "a few billion dollars" less for state coffers because of the resulting slowdown in economic growth.

When asked about the possibility of those cuts taking effect, Brown refused to say whether he wanted Congress and President Obama to renegotiate. He said the wrangling in Washington only underscores the need for state budget-makers to be fiscally prudent.

"I can’t discern what they’re going to do in Washington because I'm not even sure they know themselves," Brown said. "But the takeaway for California is that we have to maintain a prudent surplus because we could lose hundreds of millions of dollars by decisions that Congress makes."


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