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California Budget and Economy

The Wrong Target: Public Sector Unions and State Budget Deficits PDF
October 2011, by Sylvia A. Allegretto, Ken Jacobs and Laurel Lucia.
» Press Release PDF
» Press Coverage

This report analyzes the relationship between public sector workers, their unions, and state budget deficits. It finds that public sector employees and unions are not the cause of state budget deficits.
Meeting California’s Retirement Security Challenge
» Press Release PDF
» Press Coverage
October 2011, by Nari Rhee, ed.
This edited volume brings together rigorous academic and policy research to outline California workers’ retirement prospects in the context of threats to Social Security, the decline of secure workplace pensions, and the shift to risky individual investment accounts like 401(k)s. In California, less than one–half of private sector workers have access to an employer sponsored retirement plan, and nearly half of all workers are likely to have retirement incomes that place them in or near poverty. There is also marked racial and socioeconomic inequality in life expectancy among California residents that persists at retirement age. Fortunately, state level policies can make it easier for employers and employees to participate in cost–efficient and secure retirement plans for workers who do not have an adequate pension.

Economic Impacts of Early Care and Education in California PDF
» Press Release
» Press Coverage
August 2011, by Jenifer MacGillvary and Laurel Lucia
Early care and education (ECE) is an important industry in California, serving more than 850,000 California children and their families and bringing in gross receipts of at least $5.6 billion annually. The industry not only benefits the children who receive care, but also strengthens the California economy as a whole. This paper discusses the range of economic benefits that the ECE industry brings to California.

Unemployment Benefits Critical to Jobless Workers and Economic Recovery in California PDF
April 2011, by Sylvia A. Allegretto and Laurel Lucia
This policy brief explains why unemployment insurance (UI) benefits provide one of the most effective and efficient means to address economic woes imposed by joblessness. In California, UI helped approximately 1.5 million workers and their families afford basic necessities in 2009, kept nearly 500,000 Californians out of poverty, and resulted in spending that supported 161,000 jobs. Without this vital safety net, the severity of the economic crisis would have been deeper, unemployment would have been nearly one percentage point greater, state and local tax revenue would have been $1.8 billion lower, and the economic hardship faced by families would have been more severe.

The Economic Consequences of Proposed California Budget Cuts PDF
» Regional Economic Impacts (New July 2010) PDF
» Press Coverage
May 2010, by Ken Jacobs, Laurel Lucia and T. William Lester
This policy brief compares the economic impact of the Governor's 2010-2011 budget with an alternative budget approach that includes revenue increases. The Governor's cuts-only approach would result in the loss of 331,000 full-time equivalent jobs, $36 billion in economic output and $1.9 billion in state and local tax revenue, mostly as a result of cuts to major health and human services programs that bring in significant federal matching funds. A mixed budget approach that includes revenue increases would result in half the reduction in economic output, save $1.1 billion in state and local tax revenue, and save nearly 244,000 jobs.

Budget Solutions and Jobs PDF
» Press Coverage
March 2010, by Ken Jacobs, T. William Lester and Laurel Tan
This policy brief examines the economic impact of select solutions to close California’s budget gap. When it comes to employment and fiscal impacts, not all budget solutions are equal. Spending cuts for health and social services programs, such as In-Home Supportive Services, Medi-Cal, Healthy Families and CalWORKS, would result in significantly greater loss of jobs and state and local sales tax revenue, compared to equivalent revenue increases such as a tax on upper income households or an oil severance tax.

The High Cost of Furloughs PDF
» Press Release
» Press Coverage
October 2009, by Ken Jacobs
This report analyzes the broad impact of furloughing state employees for three days a month or the equivalent of a loss of seven weeks of pay, compared to a single monthly mandatory furlough day. It concludes that the expanded furloughs will save the general fund just 12 cents for every dollar cut in wages and benefits.

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