In the coming days, Governor Newsom will unveil his updated 2022-23 California state budget proposal — commonly known as the May Revision or May Revise. This revised proposal outlines the governor’s economic and revenue outlook and his administration’s policy priorities, including changes since his January proposed budget.
As we gear up to analyze the updated spending plan, our team is thinking about the most pressing policies that will impact the health and well-being of Californians.
Here are 5 questions we’re asking ahead of the May Revision.
1. Will the governor propose significant relief for Californians who need it most?
Californians should be able to afford housing, food, child care, and other basic needs. But right now, rising costs are hitting Californians with low incomes especially hard — and these households struggled paying for basic needs long before inflation and the pandemic.
While the governor and the Legislature have proposed a variety of rebates to provide direct cash support, we remain committed to the principles that any state relief should be thoughtful, meaningful, targeted, and efficient. Building on the successes of the Golden State Stimulus last year and providing additional grants to all CalWORKs households are two ways Californians most in need can receive meaningful, targeted relief based on income.
2. How will the governor address the Gann Limit in the state budget proposal?
Our state budget should be a reflection of California’s values and we believe that means investing in the health and well-being of Californians with low and moderate incomes and more equitably distributing our state’s resources. Yet Californians are bound to a decades-old spending cap — known as the Gann Limit. This spending cap limits how much the state can spend on vital programs that help people and families.
In January, the governor didn’t outline a plan to address the Gann Limit. Now, with stronger-than-expected revenue growth, the state will significantly exceed the limit if policymakers do not reduce revenues or spend more on things that can be excluded from the limit, such as infrastructure and emergency response.
Policymakers have an opportunity to use the state’s revenue growth — a reflection of massive income and wealth inequality — to help Californians while keeping the state under the Gann Limit. Still, state leaders should lay the groundwork for meaningful reform of the Gann Limit in the coming years.
3. Will the governor immediately fund Medi-Cal for income-eligible undocumented adults?
Medi-Cal is a lifeline for over 13 million Californians, yet undocumented immigrants ages 26 to 49 remain excluded from accessing this critical health care. In January, the governor proposed to end this unjust exclusion, but funding would come no sooner than January 2024.
Undocumented Californians and their families are deeply engrained in the state’s social fabric — they are members of the state’s workforce, pay taxes, attend schools, own businesses, and raise families who invest in local communities. There is no excuse to exclude them from vital supports.
The Governor’s May Revision Explained
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Join us on May 20 as our Budget Center experts explore what the governor’s budget proposals mean for Californians with low incomes who we know are most struggling to make ends meet.
4. How will the governor better help Californians experiencing homelessness?
Having a place to call home is the most basic foundation for health and well-being. But many thousands of people in California each year experience homelessness and its destructive effects — and Black and LGBTQ+ individuals are acutely affected.
In January, the governor proposed an additional $2 billion to address homelessness, focusing on immediate bridge housing and treatment services for unhoused Californians with serious behavioral health conditions and encampment resolution grants. Since January, the governor has also released initial details for the CARE Court proposal to establish court-ordered treatment for people experiencing both homelessness and serious mental health challenges.
5. Will the governor propose meaningful paid family leave and state disability insurance for Californians?
Over the span of a career, most Californians need time away from work to care for a new child, a family member, or for their own health. But low payment rates in the state’s paid family leave and disability insurance programs block workers from using these programs in times of need since many California workers cannot pay their bills with a fraction of their earnings. This is especially the case for workers with low wages who are disproportionately women, Black, and Latinx Californians.
Yet the Governor did not include any proposals to improve the state’s paid family leave or disability insurance programs in the January budget, even though rates are scheduled to decrease in 2023.
What do you hope to see in Governor Newsom’s May Revision?
Did you know? Each year, the Budget Center comes out with a First Look analysis of the governor’s May Revision. Our team of experts will take a close look at these questions and much more in the days following the governor’s unveiling of the updated spending proposal. Want to support our work? Please consider donating to the Budget Center to help advance understanding and transparency in the state budget process and create a more inclusive California.