Brown Seeks 5-Year Extension of California Taxes

Gov. Jerry Brown is proposing to slash funding for most areas of state government and maintain a series of tax increases for five years to close California's huge budget deficit.

Jerry Brown, California State Attorney General
Jerry Brown, California State Attorney General

The Democratic governor on Monday released his first budget proposal since winning election last fall. He called for $12.5 billion in spending cuts, including reductions in welfare, social services, health care for the poor and higher education.

Brown also wants the Legislature to call a special election in June to give voters an opportunity to continue hikes in the income, sales and vehicle taxes for five years.

The governor's office says the only area of state spending he would protect is K-12 education.

Brown said his recommendations will close an 18-month budget gap estimated at $25.4 billion.