Gov. Newsom's budget confronts COVID-19, climate change, homeless, crime

Gavin Newsom
Posted at 7:07 PM, Jan 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-10 22:07:55-05

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing a $286 billion budget.

Newsom's presentation Monday sets off months of budget talks with his fellow Democrats who control the state Legislature before the new fiscal year begins July 1.

He focused much of his budget proposal on some of the state’s biggest issues. They include climate change, homelessness, education, abortion, high-speed rail, the pandemic and crime.

"The committment goal this year is to do more testing, get those vaccine boosters and continue to do what we can to fight this latest surge," said Newsom.

When it come to climate change, Newsom said the focus on funding would be for wildfire prevention, clean energy and drought response. The governor is also allocating $14 billion towards homelessness.

"We recognize our responsibility to do more and better. I want you to know the numbers you see here you've never seen in our state and in any state in the nation," said Newsom.

Another major part of the package is cost of living which includes funding for affordable housing, education and healthcare. Newsom wants to make California the first state to cover all low-income state residents under its Medicaid plan regardless of their immigration status.

The state already covers younger and older low income residents who are in the country illegally. Now Newsom wants state lawmakers to cover the remainder.