Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government

January 18, 2011
AM Alert: Senate Dems huddle

Senate Democrats are meeting in Sacramento today and tomorrow to talk budget.

Job creation and other policy issues will be discussed during the annual private event, though talk is expected to be centered on Gov. Jerry Brown's budget proposal.

That discussion could include strategy, as the Legislative Analyst Mac Taylor and others have confirmed that Brown's proposed route of putting tax extensions on the ballot before passing the actual budget bill would require a two-thirds vote on the taxes.

With most Republicans pledging to vote no on that part, alternative pathways for meeting the truncated time line for getting the proposal on the ballot by June have been floated, though possible legal challenges could emerge.

Members will also hear from business leaders, who have been invited to talk about the state's economy, Senate Budget Committee Chair Mark Leno said Friday.

Under the dome, the Assembly Higher Education Committee meets today to look at how the state's public universities and colleges can meet student needs in light of continued funding reductions.

As Bee colleague Laurel Rosenhall wrote last week, California's three higher education systems are poised to take a big hit under Brown's budget proposal.

Representatives from the Legislative Analyst's Office, California State University, the University of California and the California Community College systems are all expected to be on hand for the hearing.

The 1:30 p.m. hearing will be broadcast at this link.


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