Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Internet Rumor: Zero for Higher Ed?

Here is a re-posting from the liberal calitics blog which suggests that Governor-elect Brown will present a shock budget that would provide zero for higher ed.

No other reports on the meeting Brown held at UCLA reported a literal zero for higher ed. It was not mentioned in the segment I previously posted from Which Way LA? on the Brown meeting. That there will be a shock budget seems a sure thing. Cuts for higher ed could certainly be part of it. I would be surprised by a total zero. But here is the entry:

Jerry Brown as Jacob Marley

by: Brian Leubitz

Dec 14, 2010,

In case the education forum didn't provide enough signs of this, Sen. Alan Lowenthal gave his take on the Governor-Elect's objective with his budget plans. Like many observers, Lowenthal predicts Brown will propose a dire budget in January, then push voters to approve a tax increase to preserve services that would otherwise be cut. "My guess is he will present an austerity budget," Lowenthal said. "And I think then he will go to the public and say, 'This is your choice.'"(SacBee)

As Robert posted earlier, it looks increasingly likely that Jerry Brown plans on shocking the California electorate into action. With a budget deficit that is going to be somewhere between 25 and 30 billion dollars, and Brown planning to present a "clean" budget, that is, free of any budget gimmickry or other one-time fixes, any budget that he presents will be truly awful. CalWorks and CalGrants both probably gone. The possibility of the elimination of all funding for higher education could also be in the cards, along with sweeping cuts to K-12. You would imagine there would also be continued cuts to transportation and social services. In-home support and possibly even full-time nursing homes on the chopping block.

In other words, the proposed budget might actually propose a future with the mentally and physically handicapped forced on to the streets, our children lacking on all but the most bare educational resources, and our parks shut. It's not really a future that you would think that most Californians would support, but it just might be on the ballot come 2011.

The election will be in the summer, but it might be that Jerry Brown is our Jacob Marley, in that he is offering us a chance of hope. Showing the sins of our past, explaining our budget present, and offering us a way out to build a California for the future.

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