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Davis Budget Cuts Not As Deep As Feared

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Educators say cuts to school programs in Governor Davis´ revised budget plan aren´t as deep as they feared– but will still be difficult. The new plan restores money for class-size reduction, special education and nutrition programs. It focuses cuts on other programs, such as books, teacher and principal training and reading assistance. The governor´s revised budget proposal would raise taxes on vehicles, tobacco and the wealthy and make a long list of cuts to close an estimated $38.2 billion shortfall through July 2004.

Schools account for the largest share of the state´s general funds, getting about 40 percent of state revenues. Under Davis´ revised spending plan, education would get about $45.6 billion of the $95.8 billion budget. That´s $1.5 billion less for education than last year. The plan also lets schools dip into their reserves to help pay for day-to-day operations.

Barbara Kerr with the California Teachers Association says that´s going to help spare programs such as class size reduction. She says it could also lessen the number of teacher layoffs.

Read the budget plan at {}California Department of Finance{/url} web site.

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