Senator Leyva Responds to Governor Newsom’s May Budget Revision

Friday, May 13, 2022

SACRAMENTO – Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) issued the following statement in response to Governor Gavin Newsom’s May Revision of the 2022-23 state budget:

“As the COVID-19 pandemic has created tremendous hardship on children, families and communities across California, it is critical that we continue to focus on minimizing those ongoing challenges, particularly related to childcare.  Unfortunately, I do not believe that this May Revise prioritizes the needs of working families to access schooling and care options for their young children that allow for flexible hours, such as early drop-off, late pick-up, weekend care or year-round care.  As the author of SB 976 that seeks to establish universal preschool in California, I commit to continue working with the Administration and legislative leadership to prioritize universal preschool in the final budget and as part of this legislation since parents are unable to work if they do not have access to flexible care options for their children.  If care facilities in the community close—which will likely happen to many of them if we do not expand flexibility—many women will lose their jobs and families will have even fewer options for their children.  Though disappointed by the lack of funding for universal preschool, I am encouraged by the inclusion of $157 million to waive childcare fees for low income families in California, as that is certainly a step in the right direction.”

“As the chair of the Senate Education Committee, I am pleased that the revised budget includes $128.3 billion for K-12 education, as well as substantial funds for K-12 school facilities.  Specifically, I applaud the additional $2.1 billion to the LCFF Base and 6.56 percent COLA. I am also happy to see the creation of an $8 billion discretionary block grant to enable local educational agencies to address any number of local needs such as protecting staffing levels, addressing student learning challenges, and supporting the mental health and wellness needs of students and staff.  The continued investments in student-centered supports such as community schools, expanded learning opportunities, and our educator workforce is critical to maintain our whole child approach.  I additionally appreciate the higher education compacts and roadmaps to achieve shared priorities, such as expanding undergraduate enrollment and minimizing non-tuition costs.”

“I also truly appreciate the Governor highlighting access to reproductive health care at California universities today, as well as his continued leadership and partnership on expanding access to abortion and reproductive care across the state.  As the author of SB 24 (2019) ensuring access to medication abortion on California public university campuses, I am delighted that the Governor is proposing $125 million for reproductive health by helping to cover care for uninsured individuals for abortion services and to offer grants to organizations to provide vital education and outreach on these critical health care issues, among other funding priorities.  As the threat to Roe v. Wade is as real as ever, California must remain a national leader on reproductive and abortion care.  As I have said many times before: If people do not have access to an abortion, it does not mean that they will not still have abortions.  It just means that many more people will die.”

“As we approach the June 15th budget deadline, I will continue working with my legislative colleagues and the Newsom Administration to make these family focused priorities a reality.”