Governor's revised budget increases funding to schools, child care

Revision injects $1.4 billion into schools
Governor's revised budget increases funding to schools, child care
Posted at 11:43 AM, May 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-11 16:20:48-04

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KGTV) - Governor Jerry Brown released a revised budget Thursday, with a focus on increased spending for schools and child care.

The revised budget plan, which goes into effect July 1, includes a $1.4-billion increase in spending for the 2017-18 school year.

The Governor's Office cited a "modestly improved fiscal outlook" compared to January's revenue shortfall forecast.

Under the revised budget, education funding will focus on K-12 schools, with levels increasing by about $4,058 per student during the 2017-18 academic year, compared to the 2011-12 year.

SUMMARY TEXT: Gov. Brown's May revised budget plan

"Over the past four years, we have increased spending by billions of dollars for education, health care, child care and other anti-poverty programs. In the coming year, I don’t think even more spending will be possible," Gov. Brown said. "We have ongoing pressures from Washington and an economic recovery that won’t last forever."

News of the state's pending budget woes has hit the San Diego Unified School District particularly hard. Since February the school district has been planning for a $124 million budget shortfall, which has led to layoff notices and program cuts.

Following May's revision, Shari Winet, communications director with SDUSD, said "it's too soon" to tell how the increase will affect their plans. 

"District folks are still reviewing, so there's no analysis yet," Winet wrote to 10News.


May's revision also sets aside $50 million in funding for the University of California college system, on the condition that the UC system meets obligations related to activity-based costing, enrollment of transfer students, and recommendations by the State Auditor.

The revision also prevents a scheduled reduction in financial aid awards to low-income students at private colleges.

Child care providers will see the state's $500-million child care package restored and maintained under the new budget as well. January's plan called for a one-year delay in this funding to providers.

May's revision also reflects how the state intends to spend the first $2.8 billion from the recently a passed transportation bill, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017:

  • Focus on "fix-it-first" investments to repair neighborhood roads and state highways and bridges.
  • Investments in trade and commute corridors to support continued economic growth and implement a sustainable freight strategy.
  • Matching of locally generated funds for high-priority transportation projects.
  • Invest in passenger rail and public transit modernization and improvement.

The bill will raise funds through an increase in the state's gas tax, which increases spending by about $10 a month for California drivers.

Though, the Governor's revision remained cautious and "considerably more constrained" than any year since 2012.

"The state must also continue to plan for and save for tougher budget times ahead," the plan said, noting pending federal actions on defunding health care, eliminating the deductibility of state taxes, and defunding Planned Parenthood. "That could send the state budget into turmoil."

"Moreover, by the time the budget is enacted in June, the economy will have finished its eighth year of expansion - only two years shorter than the longest recovery since World War II. A recession at some point is inevitable."

Mark Saunders is a KGTV digital producer. Follow him on Twitter at @10NewsSaunders.