Senator Wieckowski issues statement on California's state budget

June 16, 2016

Sacramento – State Senator Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) issued the following statement on the Legislature’s approval of the 2016-2017 California state budget.

“This budget reflects the priorities and values of Californians by increasing investments in K-12 education, offering increased access to our higher education system, addressing factors that trap low-income households in poverty, all while building up our Rainy Day fund and paying down state debts.

“On issues related to poverty, I am proud to have led a bipartisan effort to increase funding for legal aid programs, by increasing our investment in the Equal Access Fund.  This marks the first year funding has been increased.  Although more resources are necessary, this investment will help low-income families avoid homelessness, escape domestic violence and resolve other problems threatening their health and safety.

“The Legislature’s ‘No Place like Home’ Initiative combats chronic homelessness with a $2 billion bond to acquire permanent supportive housing and by leveraging federal dollars.  The budget repeals the Maximum Family Grant Rule, which for decades put a cap on aid to the most vulnerable families in our state.  The repeal will have a positive effect on public health by reducing childhood poverty.  Also, the budget provides working parents assistance in obtaining child care by investing $527 million over three years. 

“In addition to getting kids better prepared for elementary school through childcare, the budget adds 7,000 new spaces for in-state students within at the University of California and California State University systems.  It also includes $200 million to assist low-income students in attending and completing college.

“This is another responsible, on-time budget that invests in our future and seeks to lift up those families who have been left behind in the recent economic recovery.  While many challenges remain, the budget matches the values that have made California the sixth-leading economy in the world.”