Monday, March 14, 2011

Sacramento Bee: Budget Talks Reported to Have Broken Down

Capitol Alert

The latest on California politics and government

March 14, 2011 The Sacramento Bee 
Republicans say budget talks have broken down

Budget talks between Gov. Jerry Brown and five Senate Republicans are "done and over," Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway told KMJ radio this morning, though the governor's spokesman disagrees.

"It's my impression, after speaking to some of (the Senate Republicans), that the talks are done and over, and they walked away from the table," Conway said. "It's their impression that, even though the governor seems willing, labor has said 'no' to all of the requests. So I think everybody left very unhappy from the table."

Joe Justin, spokesman for Sen. Bill Emmerson, R-Hemet, one of the five GOP senators negotiating with Brown, said Conway's remarks were accurate.

"We remain committed to work," Justin said. "The public employee labor unions wouldn't allow movement on a hard, meaningful spending cap and true, long-lasting pension reform."

But Brown press secretary Gil Duran disputed that budget negotiations with the five Republicans are done.

"Talks are continuing," Duran said. "It seems to me that some people are urgently trying to exaggerate and spread this other story, but that is not our understanding of the situation."

Click here to listen to the full radio interview with Conway.

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