Conference Committee Here We Come

The Senate and Assembly Budget Committees have completed their reviews of the Governor’s Proposed 2011-12 Budget. Both Committees largely adopted the Governor’s proposals, in some instances on a party line vote. The Senate’s version of the budget includes $12.7 billion of expenditure reductions, $12.0 billion of revenues, and $3.0 billion of “other solutions.” The Assembly’s version includes the same level of expenditure reductions and revenues, but a lower level ($2.2 billion) of “other solutions” leading to a smaller reserve.

The two-house conference committee of lawmakers will meet to resolve differences between the two versions of the budget, with a mid-March target date for completing work on a framework for a 2011-12 spending plan and measures that would be submitted to the voters for approval in June extending temporary taxes first imposed in February 2009 and providing a structure for shifting responsibility for a range of programs from the state to county government.

The CBP will publish a side-by-side comparison of major differences between the various versions of the budget later this week.

— Jean Ross