Newsom vows to spend more, reform little – Orange County Register

Governor Gavin Newsom’s budget proposal for fiscal year 2022-23 is huge, with more than $200 billion in general fund spending, but it largely offers much of the same. The government is bigger, more expensive, and there are relatively few calls for reform.

It shouldn’t lose anyone that the proposed $213 billion in general fund spending comes from the high taxes Californians pay.

There are definitely some good ideas and suggestions in the budget.

Newsom’s budget proposal provides for some small business relief, including certain freebies.

It provides relief to restaurants by ensuring that federal aid given to restaurants is not taxed by the state.

It called for unemployment insurance debt payments to be reduced to $3 billion.

And it even included a delay in the implementation of the planned inflation-adjusted increases to the gas tax slated for July.

These are all positive developments that will provide aid to Californians and California business owners who are still in the process of rebuilding their businesses and lives.

However, proposals like these implicitly acknowledge the inevitable fact that Californians are overtaxed and incur too many state-imposed costs.

At a time when Democrats in the Legislature and others are still busy rolling out new taxes, cost regulations, and evictions of Prop 13, it is difficult to grant Governor too much credit.

However, we will take what we can get and will credit the governor.

During Monday’s budget presentation, Newsom pointed to some other rather promising ideas.

These include calls to invest more broadly in California’s behavioral health system and assist cities in cleaning up prisons with the goal of housing the homeless and providing assistance. .

Here, Newsom also had the opportunity to offer tangible and helpful solutions to the tragic situation in cities across California. We will closely monitor this development.

On the housing issue, Newsom alluded to the prospect of reforming the California Environmental Quality Act.

“We are working… to see if those reforms can take shape,” he said. We hope these efforts succeed. This editorial board has long advocated for reforms to reduce the use of CEQA as a tool to thwart housing and other developments that opponents dislike. That is not the purpose of CEQA.

On the education front, Newsom noted that under its budget proposal, the state’s education spending per student on Proposition 98 would double over the past decade. In total, state spending will come in at $21,000 per student.

“If we’re going to double the investment, we want reform, we want to see improved results,” Newsom said.

While we certainly agree with that and can envision many reforms and ways to improve the education system, Newsom goes on to lay out his reformist idea: throw more money at the status quo.

If stagnant education results over the past decade suggest anything, it’s keeping the K-12 system under the influence of Newsom’s teachers union allies that matters. Unfortunately, that’s the status quo Newsom isn’t interested in actually reforming.

Keep stable. We’ll keep an eye on it as the budgeting process unfolds. Newsom vows to spend more, reform little – Orange County Register

Huynh Nguyen

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