Jerry Brown: ‘California is back’

The Overheard in the Goldman Sachs Elevator Twitter page once quoted someone as saying:

“California is the bum of America.”

Considering the sorry state of the economy for the past few years, some Californians might have agreed.

Things are looking up for the Golden State, however, according to Gov. Jerry Brown in his State of the State address Thursday in Sacramento.

Brown praised the future of California, which is looking forward to projects concerning its water supply, high-speed rail, education reform and better health care.

This change of attitude is in stark contrast with the grim 2012, in which Brown spelled doom for California if his education tax failed.

The passing of Prop. 30 facilitated the ray of hope for getting California back on track, or as Brown referred to it, the road to the “California Dream.”

The tax increases on households making more than $250,000 and will be in effect for seven years. A quarter-cent sales tax raise will be in effect for four.

Brown said these changes will allow the state government to be accountable for a better California:

“We have promises to keep. The most important one is the one we made to the people if Prop 30 passed. This means living within our means and not spending what we don’t have.”

Brown recently passed a state budget of $97.6 billion for the approaching fiscal year, a $6.3 billion leap above the budget currently in place.

Brown is now backed by a Democratic majority in the legislative and executive branches. But Sherry Bebitch Jeffe, political analyst, said this turn of events also requires effective leadership.

In addition to funding, Brown spoke of education reform and called for a focus on “real world problems,” such as income.

He also discussed hefty projects coming up for the state, including water supply protections in case of disasters like earthquakes and floods.

The second project was the high-speed rail that has been a key topic during his term. The rail project will begin at Madera and continue to Bakersfield before entering the Tehachapi Mountains to Palmdale.

Brown showed that he remained realistic, conceding that achieving future goals will be no east feat:

“It is bold but so is everything else about California.”