Assembly Budget Committee Unveils 2021 Budget Blueprint

Client Alert

With less than a month away from the Governor’s introduction of California’s 2021 budget, the Assembly Budget Committee recently unveiled its Blueprint for a Responsible Budget for the upcoming 2021-22 budget, a presentation of the Assembly’s spending priorities. According to Assembly Budget Committee Chair Phil Ting, “This is a time when people need their government the most. Until we have widespread vaccination rates, we will need to keep helping families and small businesses and provide a path to economic recovery.”

The Assembly Budget Committee’s blueprint aims to “preserve, respond, protect, recover” from the unprecedented impact of the pandemic. Highlights of the blueprint include the following priorities:

  • Stabilize critical programs and services, including repaying school/community college deferrals and restoring cuts to the University of California, California State universities, courts, housing, child support, and health and human services.
  • Persist in responding to COVID-19, including continued investment in public health infrastructure, reopening of schools safely, protecting vulnerable populations in nursing homes and prisons, and ensuring greater transparency and oversight of all disaster-related funding.
  • Provide support for working families, including funding to head off homelessness, expanding assistance programs, increasing college financial aid, refunding amounts for California Earned Income Tax Credit filers, and safeguarding communities from wildfires.
  • Support economic recovery, including preventing evictions, modernizing the Employment Development Department, retraining laid-off workers and establishing a Climate Crisis investment plan.

The budget process will begin in earnest by January 10, 2021, when Governor Newsom releases California’s 2021-22 budget proposal. From there, the Assembly and Senate budget committees, including the various budget subcommittees, will review and amend the Governor’s budget. After a floor vote in both houses of the Legislature, a final version will be sent to the Governor in the summer of 2021 for approval. For more information on the Assembly Budget Committee’s Blueprint for a Responsible Budget, click here.

With the recent announcement that the state general fund revenues are higher than projected in the 2020-21 enacted budget, the Assembly Democrats are setting forth policy priorities with their blueprint. Some of the Assembly budget priorities may conflict with those of Senate Democrats and, ultimately, Governor Newsom. Regardless, we can expect to see major policy issues and expenditures to be decided in the 2021 May Revise, after April tax receipts are known.

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