Releases & Statements

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SACRAMENTO—Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins (D-San Diego) released the following statement regarding Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.’s May Revise of the 2015-16 state budget:

“The Assembly has made clear our budget priorities include reducing poverty, restoring funding for schools and early childhood education, improving higher education funding, building reserves and paying down debt, and providing a down payment for transportation infrastructure.

The Governor’s May Budget revision makes significant progress in these areas, and we look forward to working with the Senate and the Governor in the coming weeks to find ways to improve the budget and make vital investments for California’s future.”

On the Earned Income Tax Credit proposal:

“In the Assembly we have been working to make sure that no one who works a full time job should be living in poverty. A targeted, state version of the Earned Income Tax Credit, along with increasing the minimum wage, are great tools to help move Californians out of poverty.

The $380 million Earned Income Tax Credit proposed by Governor Brown will benefit approximately 2 million Californians, including some 50,000 Californians who will be lifted from poverty and another 50,000 who will be lifted from deep poverty.

The beauty of the earned income tax credit – which Presidents Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan championed at the federal level – is that it not only helps working families, it helps money circulate into local economies.

In combination with making progress on the minimum wage and increasing access to child care, two other key issues that challenge struggling working families, including the state Earned Income Tax Credit in the budget is a big step in the fight against poverty.”

On higher education:

“The Assembly has led the effort to provide additional funds for California’s colleges and universities, and it’s good to see the Governor take that position in the budget revision.

It’s also a positive sign that UC has apparently agreed to keep fees flat and implement pension reforms.

However, in light of the Assembly’s in-depth review of UC’s budget, it is clear further actions are necessary to ensure UC returns to a model that puts California students first and that more effectively uses the resources the state provides.

The Assembly will work to provide a higher level of funding for CSU, which has taken a more responsible approach to student fees, particularly funding that can help accelerate CSU’s graduation rate. CSU is one of the cornerstones of our higher education system and deserves funding at least equal to that provided to UC.

We look forward to working with the Governor and the Senate to reach a successful conclusion that increases funds for UC and CSU and recommits in a larger way for California students and their families.”

Website of Assembly Speaker Toni G. Atkins: http://asmdc.org/speaker

CONTACT: John Casey (916) 319-2408