The state of California may be resorting to IOUs to make payments as early as next month if a budget compromise cannot be achieved, Assemblyman Anthony Adams said this week.
â€œWe have about three weeks to get the job done,â€ the 59th District Republican told the Valley Sun. He blamed the Democratic majority for the stalemate over meeting a $17 billion shortfall. â€œThey've consistently refused to bargain in good faith.â€
Republican leaders have resorted to court action to challenge a series of revenue measures which Adams characterized as illegal taxes. The use of a fee structure was intended to bypass the need for a two-thirds majority in both houses for new taxes. Among the fees/taxes are a 1.5 cent boost in the sales tax and an increase in car license fees.
â€œWe are in agreement with many of the proposed cuts,â€ Adams said. â€œBut we want to talk about substantive reforms.â€
The Republican minority has presented a plan with $22 million in cuts and revenue, including a 5% cut in pay for legislators.
Asked what was the next step needed, Adams said, â€œIt's up to the Democrats. We can and we must get the job done.â€ He said the governor, who has frequently clashed with fellow Republicans in the past, has failed to take a clear position. â€œIt's time to lock us in a room and come up with a solution.â€
Adams said he would oppose the administration's current proposal to defer up to $20 billion in debt beyond the 2009-10 year.
There is also some hope for assistance from the federal stimulus package now being drafted. The governor in a letter this week to President-elect Barack Obama put in a pitch for a California share in the new bailout measure. The governor said the state has nearly $44 billion in projects that are â€œshovel ready,â€ and he also asked for funding to take some of the Medicaid burden off the state.