Weary Calif. Lawmakers Finally OK Budget

But Governator calls it 'nothing to celebrate'
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 19, 2008 8:48 PM CDT
California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger talks about the tentative budget agreement with the legislature during a news conference at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., on Friday, Sept. 19, 2008.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – California lawmakers finally approved a state budget today that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger called "nothing to celebrate," the Sacramento Bee reports. Eighty-one days late, the $104.3 billion plan boosts social services and education but cuts back on schools and health care, the Los Angeles Times reports. It also failed to address long-term financial problems, critics say.

"Unfortunately the Legislature was unable to make the hard decisions to end our structural deficit, but this budget is an improvement of the earlier versions," Schwarzenegger said. But he agreed to sign the bill, which was passed over Republican opposition and includes no new taxes. He also vowed to penalize lawmakers next time they're late with a budget.