FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 15, 2017
Katie Smith, Communications Director
KSmith@advanceproj.org, (213) 406-9158
California Budget Signals Commitment to High-Need Families
Equitable spending in the 17-18 state budget is the first step to defend California residents from potential federal cuts, long-term investment in vulnerable populations is needed
On June 15, the Legislature passed the 2017-2018 California budget, which prioritizes funding for crucial social services being threatened by looming federal policies. Advancement Project California commends the Legislature, the budget committee members and their staff, and the leadership for standing by and passing a conscious, yet responsible budget. More importantly, we commend the many community-based organizations who relentlessly advocated for adequate funding for programs that not only protect the lives of the most vulnerable, but also lead the nation in improving lives by enhancing public safety, defending and advancing early childcare and education, and creating incentives for service providers serving low-income families.
“The state budget is a reflection of our values and the Legislature today made a clear statement that we will not let regressive federal policies stop us from uplifting our children, families, and communities with the highest need; however, our work is not done,” said Khydeeja Alam Javid, Director of Governmental Relations at Advancement Project California. “We are pleased to see so many of our priorities got funded in this budget and we will continue to fight for investments that are rooted in social, economic and racial equity.”
Advancement Project California is pleased to see the following investments in the 2017-18 budget:
Planning for a Fair, Accurate 2020 Census Count: The federal government poses real threats to the 2020 Census, and California needs an accurate count to ensure fair public funding and political representation for our communities over the next decade. We applaud the Legislature’s inclusion of $7 million for the Local Update of Census Addresses Program and $3 million for census outreach planning. These initial investments will help put California in a position to reap huge rewards in the future, especially for our most vulnerable populations.
Keeping California’s Promise to Young Children: We thank the Legislature and the Governor for maintaining support for families and young children by continuing to fund early care and education programs, which would provide an additional 3,000 children access to quality early education opportunities. The budget takes important steps to address the continued widening of income inequality by addressing red tape eligibility issues that deprived working families of much-needed early learning services. Instead of erratic eligibility periods, working families will now have a 12-month stable eligibility period. We thank our state leaders for putting children and families first.
Improving Public Safety through Proposition 47 Savings: Prop 47 saved millions of dollars by prioritizing prevention over incarceration for low-level drug and property offenses. It should be celebrated that the first allocation of savings will shift from state coffers to local jurisdictions. However, we will continue to work on ensuring that the flawed methodology of calculating savings is changed so that localities are not short-changed of $100 million in much-needed funding towards additional preventive services, job training programs and re-entry services.
Defending Health Care: The increase in Medi-Cal reimbursement rates for providers who care for low-income residents is a step forward in defending the health of Californians. This is especially important with proposed federal cuts to Medicaid as part of the secretive negotiations happening with the American Health Care Act. Congress is threatening to put millions of Californians out of reach of their right to health care. We also believe that Medi-Cal should support all young adults regardless of immigration status. Undocumented Californians are vital to our community and should be able to access primary and preventive care.
Our policy experts are available for comment.
- Khydeeja Alam Javid, Director of Governmental Relations
- Karla Pleitez Howell, Director of Educational Equity
- Megan McClaire, Director of Health Equity
- Michael Russo, Associate Director of Equity in Public Funds
- John Dobard, Manager of Political Voice
Tags: 2017-2018 budget, census, ECE, Governor's Budget, Medi-Cal, Prop 47