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In 2 Months, California Could be Broke

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Everyone is agreeing to disagree up in Sacramento. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Democrats and Republicans are all bickering about their solutions as the state's budget forecast gets more turbulent every day.

"The Democrats want to block cuts to state government spending, and the Republicans want to block revenue increases because they have signed pledges to protect special interests," Schwarzenegger spokesman Matt David said in a statement yesterday. "Legislators were sent to Sacramento to fix problems, but now what they're doing is making the situation worse."

And if no agreement is come to, state Controller John Chiang says the state could run out of money in two months forcing billions of dollars in payments to contractors to be deferred or given in the form of IOUs. "The state's dire cash position not only jeopardizes and places at risk our ability to meet our financial obligations in a timely manner, it threatens our ability to respond to natural disasters and protect our communities from crime."

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But Schwarzenegger's mantra is blame the legislature. "For weeks and weeks now the legislators have postured and played political games while the deficit grew larger and larger," Schwarzenegger said at a press conference yesterday about funds cut from the 405 Freeway HOV lanes and other projects in Los Angeles. "And that's why I have a clock out in front of my office that shows that every hour we are wasting $1.3 million, every day we are wasting $40 million, every month we are wasting $1 billion."

But Assembly Speaker Karen Bass, a local democrat, doesn't see it that way. "The single biggest roadblock to having construction on the 405 (freeway) move forward is Arnold Schwarzenegger," she said referring to the unsigned $18 billion package that Democrats sent him last week.

Photo Courtesy of the Office of the Governor