by Sheila Kuehl
August 5, 2009
This second of two essays presents further information on the budget amendments passed by both houses in late July and the consequent line item vetoes by the Governor. In this essay, I describe the line-item changes made by the Governor without agreement by the legislature and how his decision to increase the deep cuts already contained in the amended budget is impacting women, children, seniors, people with AIDS and the poor.
Since the very late budget adopted last September, the Legislature has been called upon by the Governor to engage in an unprecedented continuous session on the budget. Even in the worst of times, previous Governors have found a way to solve the problem within a rational process, bringing all sides together for a fix, once a year. This year has been very different, with constant broadsides from the Governor's smoking tent and three different budgets adopted so far. Negotiations proceed only with the four legislative leaders, constantly, day after day, with little but cuts and non-budget "reforms" on the Governor's menu each time. Finally, late last month, the Legislature was forced to adopt another bloody round of cuts with no new taxes or fees. In my last essay, I described that budget. Here is the rest of the story: