The state budget process has been as weird this year as everything else has. This is largely due to the mercurial fortunes of state revenues. A year ago, we were facing a $54 billion shortfall in revenues over three years. In January, when the Governor’s budget came out, the state was tense but optimistic. Last month, when the revised budget came out it included an expected $75 billion budget surplus. Those things and the coming vote on recalling our Governor have made the process unconventional to a unique degree.
A high level summary is that there are new direct benefits available to some of the people we serve. Imagine’s state-funded revenues are the same as currently, but we no longer face a funding cut as of January 1. New funds were added for clients in self-determination, mainly during transition and some new rules are proposed some of which will make things easier and some harder. However, the legislature has adopted the proposed new rules as “placeholder language,” meaning they don’t promise to use the rules as proposed. In all likelihood, we will all find out about any new laws at roughly the same time as the Governor.
As ever, Imagine’s advocacy gets split between management’s work with the California Disability Community Action Network (CDCAN) and whatever you all choose to do. Consider a conversation with a legislator. If you would like to receive CDCAN updates, write to Marty Omoto, which you can do by clicking here.
-Submitted by Doug