Thursday, February 28, 2013

Part 2 of 5: Conn Carroll: The California spending rush

Part 2:

Will any of Brown's magic new revenue actually materialize in state coffers? History suggests it won't. A recent California Common Sense study showed that, since the recession began, governors' budget projections have overestimated revenue by an average of 5.5 percent. Apply that average to Brown's 2013 projections, and California's budget would suddenly go from $1 billion in the black to $3.9 billion in the red.

And those are just the debts that Brown chooses to acknowledge.

California has been running almost yearly budget deficits since 2000. By last year, those shortfalls had accumulated into a $28 billion "wall of debt." Brown's new budget begins to dismantle that wall -- again, assuming his fantasy revenue projections come in as advertised. But even if they come true, California will still owe $4 billion to assorted creditors by the end of 2017.

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