California Counties Ready to Collaborate with Governor Gavin Newsom and Legislature on 2023-24 State Budget
Governor Newsom projects a $22.5 billion deficit as he unveils a $297 billion state budget
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 10, 2023
Sacramento, CA – As advocates for the resources and needs of our state’s diverse 58 counties, the California State Association of Counties (CSAC) counties are prepared to work with the governor and legislature to protect critical investments in behavioral health, health care, homelessness and climate-related drought, flood, and wildfire resiliency. These investments reflect the values of our county leaders, communities, and California as a whole.
“California county supervisors are pleased by the Governor’s commitment to most ongoing investments amid this economic uncertainty,” said CSAC President and Riverside County Supervisor Chuck Washington. “Counties are key partners with the state in providing direct essential services to all Californians. Every dollar counts and counties will work with the Governor and Legislature to strategically enhance critical investments in combatting homelessness, improving access to behavioral health services, and supporting the next generation.”
The Governor also expressed the need to increase collaboration and accountability among all levels of government on homelessness, which counties believe is imperative to make substantial and lasting progress on homelessness. Graham Knaus, CSAC Executive Director, had this to say: “Counties are grateful that today’s budget proposal continues funding for efforts to address California’s immediate homelessness crisis. We are eager to unite with all stakeholders to transform our joint response to homelessness at all levels. Defining clear responsibilities and pairing them with sustainable funding, authority and accountability for all levels of government is the only way to achieve meaningful progress on homelessness.
“The time to comprehensively address homelessness is now and counties invite the state, cities and other partners to join us. Additionally, California’s counties also look forward to rightsizing the funding for county responsibilities under the Community Assistance and Recovery Empowerment (CARE) Act,” Knaus said.
While the Governor’s proposed reductions and funding delays appear prudent, counties will engage on proposed reductions to other key priorities such as “last-mile” broadband investments and health and behavioral health workforce issues. Finally, counties applaud the Governor’s proposals to invest new funding in cannabis enforcement ($116 million) and opioid and fentanyl response ($93 million in state opioid settlement funds) and sustain the state’s California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal (CalAIM) projects ($10 billion) and ongoing funding for local public health departments ($200 million).
CSAC looks forward to working with the Governor and the Legislature to accelerate and sustain California’s recovery. Like budgeting at the local level, we will strive to help the state achieve a prudent 2023-24 spending plan that aligns with key priorities during these times of economic and environmental uncertainty.
The California State Association of Counties (CSAC) is the voice of California’s 58 counties.