Aug 062008

From the San Jose Mercury News

SACRAMENTO—A frustrated Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger turned up the pressure on lawmakers Wednesday, saying he will veto any bills sent to him until they pass a state budget.The governor called a mid-afternoon news conference to express his dismay that Democratic and Republican lawmakers have not yet compromised on a spending plan. They remain at odds over how to close the state’s $15.2 billion deficit.

California is the only state with a fiscal year beginning July 1 that remains without a budget.

Schwarzenegger has warned that California faces a cash crisis and told reporters on Wednesday that passing a budget is the only issue the Legislature should focus on.

“Nothing in this building is more important than a responsible budget and to fix our broken budget system,” he said. “We do not have the luxury of stretching out this process any longer.”

I couldn’t be more proud of being a Californian than I am right now.  A total embargo on new laws is one of the first steps towards a free society, and Schwarzenegger has taken this step for us (even if it is for the wrong reasons).  Just last week he also took a swipe at wholesale reduction of government by signing an executive order eliminating more than 10,000 temporary, part-time and contract positions and cutting pay for thousands of state workers to the federal minimum wage of $6.55 an hour.

Of course, the latter move is being challenged in the courts, but it’s still a brilliant plan.  Now if only we could keep thos jobs gone and those salaries that low even after this supposed “budget crises” has been resolved.

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