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The United States government agreed to balance the federal budget by eliminating the deficit incurred from the year 2002. The balancing of the budget was agreed upon to be done by cutting on the cost of amount allocated in the federal budget (U.S Department of Commerce, 1). This will help reduce the state expenditures although a number of reasons might hamper the efforts meant to balance the budget. California, according to the 1994 financial year records spends 12% of the total federal outlays. California budget has three different types of resources: the state revenue tax, general sales tax and the trade and corporation tax, all are paid to the general fund (U.S Department of Commerce, 1). The governor and the legislator can then budget it, discus it and control it to some level. Expenditure on health and welfare programs accounts for at least one third of the general fund and three programs are assigned to the fund: Medi-Cal, Supplementary Security Income, Supplemental Payment Program and AFDC.
The Medical assistance program is meant to provide medical assistance to the low income people (Carroll, 33) however; the largest amount goes to the aid of the elderly as the Medicare program meant to help the elderly of all income levels is not included in the California budget allocation. Funds are also allocated for the families with single parents who have dependent children and a small allocation to those families with dependent children and both parents are unemployed. The SSI- supplemental Security Income is meant to assist citizens who are old, blind and also for the disabled. (Governor's Budget Summary, 21). The SSI works together with SSP- Supplemental Program Payment but in California budget, the SSI payments are not recorded, thus they rely on the SSP program. For the United States Government to balance the budget, spending in some areas will have to be reduced by 1% the expected effects are meant to reduce the federal spending so to increase the amount flowing into the state. (Governor's Budget Summary, 22).
However by reducing the amount spent on the SSP and the SSI programs the beneficiaries of the program will suffer. The program meant to provide medical aid to Californians who cannot afford the service and do not have access to private coverage will also be cut down. Women and children health care will also be adversely affected as the Medi-cal health which provides reproductive health services and parental care will be affected by the reductions on the its expenditure (Governor's Budget Summary 23). Women are the greatest number that enrolls in the program and more than a half of the women enrolled are at the peak of their reproductive years (Greenwood 32) Single women with children also contribute to the members of the program. Women generally seek medical attention more than men in their life time, therefore the reduction of the fund to the aid of medical services would mean that women will have to sacrifice their income so as to access medical care. This leaves women who earn less than men vulnerable economically (Greenwood 45).
The reduction of the aid also affects women’s ability to access family planning services. The family PACT program provides more family planning services to a great number of Californian women including those who earn low and also to the adolescence (Greenwood, 74). The family PACT intends to reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and does not give abortions. The cost of the program therefore goes high because of the provision of search services. The reduction of the funds given to the family PACT program would almost mean that the number of unexpected pregnancies will go high and the access to family planning services will be denied to majority of the California women.
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The proposed budget also eliminates the coverage of ADHC , as the funds allocated to this program are reduced the number of low income earning elderly women losing critical access to the services and ending up in the nursing homes will be high. (Governor's Budget Summary 70). The ADHE program helps the elderly by providing medical care, nursing and individual care, physical occupational and speech therapy, meals nutrition and counseling. All the services provided by the program will be derived of all this services and congestion in the nursing homes will be experienced.
The proposed budget will impose premiums for Medi-Cal coverage and co-payments in the medical services. (Governor's Budget Summary 50). Women seek medical care than men and are therefore more likely to shun medical care because of cost so, to increase the cost of getting medical care through introduction and premiums will also lead to the lack of support for the budget. The budget will also reduce the amount allocated to the medical services offered to immigrants. Although the government will save a lump sum amount of money, many will suffer as they struggle to afford health services.
The proposed 2010 budget will completely eliminate Medi-Cal coverage for the nine services for adults in California. (Governor's Budget Summary 96). Although the elimination of the services would lead to the saving of a lot of money, the recipients of this services will still need them and therefore have no option but to seek them else where at a cost. The cost of medication is expected to go high in California and therefore people with disabilities, low income earners single parents will be vulnerable financially as they have to provide for the expensive cost of health services (Greenwood 102).
The cut on the public education cost are having a negative effect on the staffing, training and the support of the future teacher workforce. In California, there is a threat that students who are produced from the education system are likely not to meet the needs of the hypercompetitive global economy. This is as a result of the lack of enough teachers to match the number of students (Carroll 103). Many teachers have been laid off as a result of low budget allocation to education, few individuals are enrolling in the teacher training colleges and therefore those retiring are likely not t get replaced in the future. During the research by the international for the centre for the future of teaching and learning, it was evident that in California teacher workforce is in a state of decline in the overall teacher workforce, drop in the number of teachers in the job and a reduction in the number of enrollees in teacher training colleges (Carroll 114).
Public education budget has also not been left behind and a sharp cut has been administered in their budget. The school systems have resulted into lying off teachers, cut enrollment of students and increase fees (Governor's Budget Summary 85). For the past one year the budget cut on education funding has aroused negative feelings and incited protests from students, administration and workers. For example on the Nov 20th the Berkley’s campus students, employees and the teaching staff demonstrated over the issue and a similar action is being organized by the parents’ students and school management through out California. The public universities rely on two types of fund; the state funding and the fees from the students. The reduction of state funding means that fee has to go high so as to sustain the school and its activities. This has been the case in California with a 32% increase in undergraduate student fee (Carroll 58) principals are allowed to create their budgets based on the daily attendance of their individual schools(Governor's Budget Summary 90) .Since the allocation of the budget is yet to be given the verdict of the teachers is not known. Other programs run by the district such as the Adult Education Program are also suffering. At the same time the district is facing problems with the Oakland’s teachers union that is demanding an increase in the compensation of their teachers who are the lowest paid in Alameda. The teachers and the students are holing demonstrations to air their views and demand that the cut of funding in the education budget be stopped as it will yield no positive results (Carroll 65). Teachers are complaining that they are already working with the minimum of funds and further cut will lead to lack of quality in education a direct impact to the student and the state at large.
The community college system is also not left behind as summer school has already been terminated in a number of colleges and expectation of student enrolment is going to be decreased in the colleges while at the same time tuition fee is expected to go high. Public schools have no choice but to continue accepting the big number of students and teach them but teachers have to pay the cost by loosing their jobs (Carroll 62). Other projects within the pubic schools will have to come to an end. Lack of projects in a school will mean lack of growth, the current times are changing in both technology and the demand for skilled graduates is going high. If the school do not change and adopt with the changing times, education system in California will lag behind thus be ineffective in the provision of skilled labor.
Although the California state budget was supposed to be balanced on the backs of the taxpayers, fees was already high but was not enough and more money was needed to offset the deficit incurred during the previous years (Carroll 16). The cut of the budget allocation was meant to assist the government in the handling of deficit but it has yielded more negative results than positive ones. The cut of fund allocation to health services is a serious issue that will affect the lives of many. Health is classified as a basic want that man has to have so as to live a healthy productive life; it is classified next to food (Greenwood 69). The denial of funds to programs meant to assist the neediest is dehumanizing and other possible sources of income should be looked at.
Education is the greatest pillar of the world’s economy, production of not well trained graduates will mean poor skills at work thus poor quality production. Education has to be maintained as it is dynamic and changes with the effect of technology and other external factors; poor funding would mean poor allocation of funds to projects thus low quality education. Education and health services are the core determiners of a good quality life and without proper funding of this sector, poor quality of general life is likely to be experienced.
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