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VIDEO RESPONSE TO CA GOVERNOR BUDGET: Governor Fails to take advantage of 'historic opportunity' to fix state budget; continues trend of balancing budget on backs of workers, poor while protecting wealthy special interests

GREEN PARTY OF CALIFORNIA PRESS RELEASE

SACRAMENTO (Jan 10, 2011) - Gov. Brown missed an "historic opportunity" to fix California when he announced his budget Monday, and continues the trend of balancing the state's finances on the backs of working families through increased "regressive" taxes for vehicles and sales while allowing the wealthiest off the hook, said the Green Party of California.

"Governor Brown is missing an historic opportunity. The governor has a chance to fix our democracy and, step by step, explain how this wealthy state got poor. You can be sure that a Green Governor would be taking those steps," said Laura Wells, the Green Party gubernatorial candidate in 2010.

See the video on Youtube.

"If Californians are given a clear choice between taking care of our kids or taking extra special care of our millionaires, which would the vast majority choose? Our kids! And our seniors, and our non-millionaire selves," added Wells, criticizing Brown's plans to slash $1.4 billion in monies to state, university and community college funding.

Wells said that "there has been a huge shift of wealth from the many to the few...a growing disparity of wealth between the rich and the rest of us, especially affecting our youth." Her budget, had she been elected as the state's first Green governor, would feature:

"Adjusting our tax and fee structures so we stop having the lowest-income families pay the highest share of their income in state taxes - 11 percent, while the richest 1 percent, with an average income of $2.2 million, pay only 7.8 percent. I would create a state bank, so that we can invest in California, not Wall Street, and we can give good loans to homeowners, businesses, and students," Wells said.

Conspicuously missing from the Governor's budget was any mention of prison cuts.

"Where are the promised cuts to the prison system budget through early release programs as an alternative to balancing the budget on the backs of the poorest Californians through the social program cuts? Although voters narrowly defeated prop 19, the state government is not precluded from legalizing and taxing some now illegal drugs. That would be regressive, too, but legalization alone even without taxes would save the state money on enforcement," said Jared Laiti, CA delegate to the Green Party National Committee.

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Contacts:
Laura Wells, Spokesperson, 510.504.4254,
Derek Iversen, Spokesperson, 323.481.8984,
Cres Vellucci, Press Secretary, 916.996.9170,

The Green Party of California
PO Box 2828
Sacramento, CA 95812
Phone: (916) 448-3437
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