No on 58: A Balanced Budget is not the Holy Grail

Many Californians, including a significant number of Peace and Freedom Party supporters, believe that a balanced state budget is a worthwhile goal. However, Proposition 58 doesn't just set a balanced state budget as a goal -- it is already -- or even just require that the governor and legislature try seriously to achieve a balanced budget.

Proposition 58 would amend the state constitution to require that the budget passed by the legislature (by a two-thirds vote, unless proposition 56 changes that) be balanced, and that if the budget goes out of balance (for example, due to a recession that brings tax revenues below projections), the legislature could neither adjourn nor conduct any other business if it didn't rebalance the budget within a month and a half after the Governor declares an emergency.

Further, Proposition 58 would exempt the $15 billion bond of Proposition 57 from normal constitutional requirements that bonds be for a specific purpose (e.g., schools, parks, or prisons, but not all three and whatever else the state needs money for), and sets aside money in future budgets for repaying those bonds.

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