August 10, 2010
On August 4, members of the Budget Conference Committee voted unanimously to adopt the Senate Budget Committee's proposal to establish a budget trailer bill that would give voters the opportunity to repeal Proposition 49. During the Committee hearing, the Legislative Analyst's Office clarified that the bill would, pending voter approval, simply "unlock" the annual $550 million appropriation and give the Legislature the discretion to set after-school funding at any level they deem appropriate. There was no proposal to include ASES in categorical program flexibility. Committee Chair Ducheny also confirmed that because the proposal would have to go to voters for approval, the language would be contained in a "stand alone" bill, separate from other proposals in the FY 2010/11 Budget Bill.
The bill, if passed by the Legislature, would need to be signed by Governor Schwarzenegger before it could appear on the ballot. The Governor vetoed a similar trailer bill, AB 1526, in 2008, asserting that such a proposal would "contradict the will of the voters." It is anticipated the Governor would veto this new bill if it were to reach his desk. In fact, Senator Ducheny began her comments by asking, "Is there anyone besides the Governor who objects to the adoption of the Senate (proposal)?"
The bill has not yet been assigned a number, but LCAP will continue to track its progress and post opposition templates when it is in print. It is quite likely the language will be similar, if not identical, to AB 1526.
To view the three-minute testimony from the Budget Conference Committee hearing, click here and begin at 2:00:50.
Yours in Partnership,