Transcript: Press briefing remarks by CA Assembly Speaker John Perez announcing an agreement for the 2013-14 state budget

Transcript of press briefing remarks by California Assembly Speaker John Perez (D-Los Angeles) announcing an agreement for the 2013-14 state budget on June 11, 2013:

Good afternoon. I’m pleased to join Gov. [Jerry] Brown, Senate President Pro Tem [Darrell] Steinberg to announce that a budget agreement has been built, which builds on the progress that we’ve made in restoring California’s fiscal responsibility and the strength of our state government.

This budget is a continuation of the work we’ve done with the Governor and our colleagues on the Senate that has eliminated California’s structural deficit, balanced our budget, and improved our credit rating. And the budget that we will adopt this week builds on that tremendous progress.

We outlined our principles with the budget – Blueprint for Responsible Budget – with three core elements: continuing fiscal responsibility, strengthening the middle-class, and delivering effective and efficient services.

These principles have guided our deliberations throughout the final stages of the budget process, culminating in last night’s conference committee actions.

The budget we will adopt is fiscally restrained with a strong reserve of over $1 billion and the anticipation of a real rainy day fund that we will put forward before voters next year.

It makes smart investments in opportunities for the middle-class by re-paying schools roughly $2 billion for past Prop. 98 deferrals, phasing in the middle-class scholarship to keep the promise of affordable higher education for all middle-class families.

We expand health care to cover more than a million Californians, and we make targeted investments to reduce California’s worst in the nation child poverty rate to further strengthen our recovery.

And we adopt policies that will move significant burdens on small businesses and agriculture industries by creating new efficiencies in government with respect to local planning and export licensing.

This is a responsible budget that reflects the values and priorities of Californians while continuing our commitment to maintaining and strengthening fiscal responsibility.

It took many difficult decisions to get to this point and I certainly want to recognize the hard work of our colleagues, especially the chairs of the respective budget committees, Mr. [Bob] Blumenfield in the Assembly and Mr. [Mark] Leno in the Senate, and our budget subcommittee chairs and all of our conferees.

California’s budget is balanced. Our economy is improving. We’re back in a position to making long-term plans for our state. This is a tremendous accomplishment for the people of California and I’m proud of the work we’ve done with the Governor and our colleagues in the Senate to deliver a budget that the people of California deserve.


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