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A Means to Alleviate California's Budget Deficit
In light of California's slow economic recovery and continued deficit, policymakers should explore new and nontraditional ideas to fund the state budget.
Californians are slowly emerging from the longest and most severe recession in modern times. Many experts believe the state's economic downturn concluded in the fourth quarter of 2009 when the gross domestic product (adjusted for inflation) increased for the first time in over a year of decline. Although the worst of the downturn may be over, Governor Schwarzenegger's economic outlook predicts a long and slow economic recovery in California, which will keep the budget at a projected deficit of approximately $20 billion over the next year. Troubling solutions to improve the economy such as cutting medical or social services (in a time when many unemployed citizens need aid), may prolong dismal circumstances. As policymakers create the 2010-2011 budget, they should explore new and nontraditional ideas instead of traditionally painful solutions.
To help alleviate California's fiscal crunch, I suggest initiating an excise tax on establishments that offer live, nude or semi-nude adult entertainment.