March Budget Cuts Rolling Out Now

Millions of Californians will see smaller aid checks, fewer services and higher costs as painful budget cuts ripple across every corner of the state in the coming weeks. The steep reductions were approved by Gov. Jerry Brown and lawmakers in March as part of their bid to get a head start on taming a $25.4 billion deficit in time for the start of the fiscal year July 1. Three months later, those actions have been overshadowed by the latest impasse over how to close the remaining gap of nearly $10 billion. But many of the cuts approved earlier are just beginning to take effect now. Donna Pomerantz says she can give you at least a thousand reasons why the Legislature should resist scaling back even more. That’s how many sight-impaired members she represents as president of the California Council of the Blind. The March action dropped aid checks to the blind, disabled and needy elderly by $15. “This is about survival – not luxuries,” said Pomerantz, who lives in the Los Angeles area. And now they are at risk of more cuts.

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