SACRAMENTO – Today, Assembly Budget Committee Vice Chair Jay Obernolte (R-Hesperia) issued the following statement in response to Governor Gavin Newsom’s budget proposal for the 2020-21 fiscal year:
“I am pleased with the Governor’s decision to continue building our budget reserves, but we must be wary of committing to more ongoing spending and do more to prepare for an economic slowdown. The more we increase state spending today, the more tough decisions and program cuts for critical services we will have to make in the future -- ultimately hurting the very Californians we are trying to protect.
“I applaud the Governor for taking urgent action to address California’s out-of-control homelessness problem, which has been increasing at an alarming rate in recent years. It is disgraceful that almost half of the nation’s unsheltered homeless population can be found here. This is certainly a statewide problem, so we must ensure that this new funding is fairly distributed to all areas of the state that are experiencing homelessness, not just the major urban regions. We must also get serious about addressing the housing affordability crisis and the skyrocketing cost of living that is hurting much of our working class. Both of these problems have their roots in oppressive state government policies, and neither will be solved until we realize that addressing the issue of homelessness requires ensuring that everyone can afford a home rather than simply moving people into shelters.
“With our outrageous cost of living, crumbling infrastructure and declining quality of life, California is experiencing the slowest population growth in recorded history. Middle-class and low-income Californians are fleeing to other states in record numbers. Unless we take rapid budgetary action to address these issues, I fear that this outmigration trend will have disastrous long-term consequences for our state.”