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State Budget 2014-2018 Highlights

Budget Overview

  • Every budget passed since 2014 has been on-time and balanced. For the first time in decades, the State has experienced seven straight years of structural surplus.
  • State revenues have recovered from the recession, increasing to $133.3 billion, 26.4 percent higher than the $105.5 billion collected in 2014.
  • Overall budget expenditures have grown from $108 billion in 2012-13 to $136.7 billion in 2017-18, a 26.6 percent increase.

K-12 Education

  • Since 2014-15, total Proposition 98 Funding has increased from $67.1 billion to $78.4 billion, an increase of $11.3 billion, or 17 percent.
  • This translates into an increase of $1,553 per pupil, to a current rate of $11,441 per student.
  • The state met a significant funding milestone in 2018 by fully-meeting the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) funding target.

Higher Education

  • Since 2014-15 big increases in higher education enrollment, including: o 10,906 more California undergraduates enrolled in the University of California system, a 7 percent increase to 179,530 total students. o 22,670 more California undergraduates enrolled in the California State University System, a 6 percent increase to 408,463 total students.
  • 75,373 more students enrolled in California Community Colleges, a 3 percent increase to 2.4 million students.
  • Tuition at UC has increased by $438, only about 4 percent, from 2014 until 2018. Tuition at CSU has increased by only $270, or about 5 percent, from 2014 until 2018. There have been no tuition increases at Community Colleges over this same time period.
  • State support of Financial Aid has increased by 21 percent, or $402 million, from 2014 to 2018. This includes the launch of the Middle Class Scholarship and about $400 million in additional funds for Cal Grants. The State now spends over $2.3 billion on financial aid every year.

Health Care

  • A 11.8 percent increase in health care insurance enrollment since 2014, with nearly 1.4 million Californians gaining insurance from Medi-Cal and the Affordable Care Act expansion. This includes extended state health care to over 215,000 undocumented children. Over one-third of Californians now get their health insurance through the State.
  • Expansion of services covered by Medi-Cal through the restoration of optional benefits eliminated in the Great Recession, including: o Optical o Adult Dental o Acupuncture · Increasing Medi-Cal Rates. Since 2012, over $1 billion has been invested in annual rate increases, including: o Physicians o Dentists o Women’s Health o Intermediate Care Facilities o AIDS Waiver o Home Health Services and Pediatric Day Health Care

Human Services

  • CalWORKs program, serving families with children living in poverty, invested in Step 1 of 3 to end deep poverty conditions for CalWORKs grants, repealed the Maximum Family Grant policy, allowing 130,000 children to receive a benefit, expanded the Early Engagement programs, created and augmented the Housing Support Program, and eliminated the ineffective Statewide Fingerprint Imaging System.
  • In-Home Supportive Services program, serving the aged and disabled, restored the seven percent service hours reduction ($266 million), implemented the Fair Labor Standards Act requirements and codified protections important to consumers, and provided $400 million in support to counties as they adjust to a new state-county cost sharing arrangement.
  • SSI/SSP program, reversed the "Cash Out," making formerly excluded cases eligible for CalFresh benefits and holding harmless current cases and provided a $45 million one-time investment to create a Housing Disability Advocacy Program to promote the transition for homeless aged, blind, and disability individuals into additional income support.
  • Created the Immigration Services Program with $45 million annual funding, with an additional one-time amount of $10 million provided for 2018-19, to provide support to agencies providing naturalization assistance, affirmative relief, and deportation defense.
  • Commenced implementation of the Continuum of Care Reform, providing additional supports to counties, foster families, and congregate care providers to transition children from group homes to family-based care, with the needed behavioral health services supports to address trauma.
  • Invested significantly ($293 million in 2016) in the Developmental Services community services programs and continued the movement to close the remaining Developmental Centers, providing supports for consumers with complex needs in the community.


  • Established the State Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) provides a refundable tax credit for wages and focuses on the lowest-income Californians or households with incomes less than $6,580 if there are no dependents or $13,870 if there are three or more dependents.
  • Expanded the EITC expanded to families with self-employment income and to include tax filers with incomes up to $22,300. Under the expansion, the State EITC provides a refundable tax credit for households with incomes less and $15,010 if there are no dependents or $22,300 if there are three or more dependents.
  • Further expanded the EITC to working individuals aged 18 to 24, and those over the age of 65. In addition, expanded the qualifying income range for the credit to apply to employees working up to full time at the 2019 minimum wage of $12 per hour. Provided $10 million for EITC outreach and tax preparation services.
  • Adopted a five-year extension of the California Competes Tax Credit program including tax credit allocation authority of $180 million per year through 2022-23.
  • Approved $20 million annually for five years for the newly created Small Business Development Technical Assistance Expansion Program. Of this amount, dedicated $3 million for the Small Business Development Center Program.


  • Increased total funding for the California Arts Council by $2.7 million to $27.7 million and made funding ongoing.


  • Passed the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017 (SB 1) which invests $54 billion over the next 10 years to fix roads, freeways, and bridges, and also funds transit and safety projects.
  • Appropriated $2.8 billion annually in new transportation revenue for maintenance of state highways, local streets and roads, intercity rail programs and other transportation projects.

Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund Expenditures

  • The state’s Cap and Trade Expenditure Program is designed to reduce greenhouse gases (GHG) from multiple sources. Since the first auction in fiscal year 2012-13, California has received $8.66 billion in proceeds from the program.
  • Under this program, the state continuously appropriates Greenhouse Gas Reduction Funds beginning in fiscal year 2015-16 as follows: 25 percent for High-Speed Rail; 20 percent of Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program; 10 percent for transit capital, and 5 percent for Low Carbon Transit Operations. This has resulted in $1.4 billion in funding for the High-Speed Rail Project, $1 billion for Affordable and Sustainable Communities, $555 million for Transit and Intercity Rail Capital projects, and $278 million for low carbon transit operations.
  • Expenditure of the remaining 40 percent of the revenue is discretionary and since 2015-16 has gone towards new and existing programs such as
    • $134 million for investments in improving the energy efficiency of food production.
    • $126 million for Urban Greening.
    • $50 million for the Office of Emergency Services for wildfire response and readiness.
    • Nearly $13 million for Healthy Soils.
    • $11 million for coastal resilience.
    • $10 million for Active Transportation.
    • $8 million for Woodsmoke Reduction.


  • Appropriated funds to transition the California Lifeline program to free and reduced cost wireless phones for low-income Californians.
  • Created a Veterans “Strike Force” to assist California veterans receive additional benefits and added funding for County Veterans Services Agencies.
  • Dedicated $500 million one-time funding in 2018 for Emergency Homeless Aid Block Grants for local governments to respond to homelessness.
  • Provided initial funding for a new skilled nursing facility at Veterans Homes of California, Yountville to replace an existing outdated facility. Total project costs are estimated to be $300 million.
  • Appropriated $134 million General Fund to help fund the replacement of county voting systems.