On June 27, Governor Jerry Brown signed the new California budget. Thanks to Prop 30 increasing taxes on the wealthy, this is the first time in many years that California will not see devastating cuts to education and other state services.
The new budget invests in the future by prioritizing education funding for students from disadvantaged backgrounds and begins to restore funding for badly-needed dental and mental health care for California’s most vulnerable residents.
State policymakers deliberated for months how the new funds for education should be distributed. California Calls decided to find out what Californians thought about this debate by surveying the new and occasional voters who participated in last November’s election. For three weeks in May, California Calls’ member organizations dispatched over 500 grassroots leaders and volunteers across the state to ask over 93,000 voters on the phone and at their door what they think.
The results were overwhelming: 83% of the voters we contacted believe that schools with the greatest need and which were impacted most by the economic crisis and years of budget cuts should receive additional funding to help even the playing field. The new California budget does just that and schools with the most disadvantaged students will now see additional money to help their students receive a quality education.
“Today’s California Voters” are the formal base of voters that California Calls is building from supporters identified over the last several years. During the first half of the year California Calls anchor groups have engaged 123,938 individual supporters, with 103,889 agreeing to be part of this base.