I would advise Governor Jerry Brown that “Rome was not built in one day!” Yes the State of California is in a fiscal crisis, however, it did not happen overnight and trying to balance the budget on the backs of the working poor is not the best solution.
A balanced budget is ideal. However, what most people do not understand is that a budget is a work in progress and can and should be modified as needed. Simply put, a budget is a financial tool to help guide the way we spend and raise money.
I would caution the Governor regarding his aggressive approach to balancing the budget by cutting Social Services and Higher Education, because this is a short term solution to a “growing” long term problem of decreasing revenues. Coupled with the decrease in revenues is the ever rising cost of goods, services, and transportation, further compounded by low wages and high unemployment. These issues must also be addressed by the Governor, and we do not need to wait around for the federal government to give us direction.
Finally, I would ask the Governor for his aggressive plan to increase revenues. Taxes are one way but not the only way. Which goods and services can we increase in California? Which new ones can we develop? I’ll give you a hint: green jobs that will not only generate more revenues but create employment.
Governor Brown, we should be building the economy with the help of the working poor and not balancing the budget at their expense.
Henry Rosales is the executive director of Spanish Speaking Citizens Foundation.