Democrats Say They Will Resist Proposed Wage Reduction for Home Care Workers in Continuing Budget Negotiations
As legislators continue to negotiate the fiscal year 2004-2005 state budget, Democratic lawmakers say that they plan to resist funding cuts for home care for the elderly, blind and disabled, the Los Angeles Times reports (Halper, Los Angeles Times, 6/15). A provision in Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's (R) updated budget proposal would reduce in-home workers' wages to the state minimum wage rate (California Healthline, 5/14). After private talks with the governor on Monday, Democratic legislative leaders said they were confident that some funding for the program would be restored. Administration officials suggested that Schwarzenegger was "willing to give a little" on wages for in-home care providers and some proposed funding cuts to higher education, the Times reports (Los Angeles Times, 6/15). The administration says that the proposed wage cut would save the state about $98 million. Observers say that the proposed wage reduction is "a substantial sum but probably not enough money to cause either the Democrats or the governor to come to loggerheads," the AP/Monterey County Herald reports. Assembly Budget Committee Chair Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) said that higher education, health and human services and local government issues "remain to be resolved" in budget negotiations (Chorneau, AP/Monterey County Herald, 6/14).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.