Assemblymember O’Donnell calls proposed education funding a good start, but cautions May Revise budget still falls short

For immediate release:

(SACRAMENTO) – Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell (D – Long Beach) issued the following statement on Governor Newsom’s May Revision to the proposed budget for the 2022-2023 fiscal year:

“Governor Newsom’s May Revised budget proposal is a good starting point, but it still falls short of reflecting the realities our schools are facing. As a parent, a teacher, and Chair of the Assembly Education Committee, I know the incredible pressure our schools are under. Inflation alone is exerting financial hardships on schools just as it is on families up and down our state.

“The Governor’s proposed increases for schools need to be larger. Particularly, base funding needs to be higher. I am joint-authoring A.B. 1948 by our Budget Committee Chair, Assemblymember Phil Ting, which would raise base-level funding by 15 percent. This is an amount that reflects the true cost pressures schools are facing from inflation, retirement obligations, declining enrollment, COVID-related interrupted attendance, special education imbalance, salary and staff shortage incentive pay, and extended sick leave.

“Given the amount of one-time General Funds available, we can responsibly make larger investments in school facilities that exceed the $3.9 billion proposed in the Governor’s revised budget plan. I believe $10 billion of one-time, non-Prop 98 funds is needed to modernize our school facilities, address deferred maintenance, and build new facilities where growth requires construction. Without substantially higher one-time investments, the burden to finance school facilities will disproportionately impact new homeowners through developer fees and higher property taxes. The opportunity presented by the state’s historic budget surplus can responsibly prevent this impact on Californians who already struggle to afford housing in our state.”

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Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell represents the 70th Assembly District, which includes Long Beach, Signal Hill, San Pedro and Catalina Island and is the Chair of the Assembly Education Committee and Chair of the Select Committee on Ports and Goods Movement.