No pressure, state lawyers. But if you could win all those lawsuits challenging California policies on furloughs, the prison population, redevelopment funding and social services cuts, the bean counters in Sacramento would be really grateful.
That’s because the Legislative Analyst’s Office, in a report issued today, says its projection of a staggering $21 billion budget deficit through 2011 assumes the state will prevail in every pending legal challenge tied to the state’s budget. If that assumption is wrong, unfavorable court decisions could put California several billion dollars more in the hole.
After the jump: Hey, we practice law for love, not a fair wage, right? Hello?
And here’s the kicker, state lawyers. Say you do a fantastic job and win every single case. You’re reward may be … no salary increase for another six years. The LAO says the state won’t be able to afford them if budget projections hold true.
“Such a long wage freeze,” the LAO notes, “could affect departmental operations negatively in various ways.”
The judicial branch can forget about seeing a quick return of its automatic annual inflation increase, too, the LAO says.
You can read the LAO’s cheery budget forecast in its entirety here.
— Cheryl Miller
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