Governor Gavin Newsom released a 2023-24 state budget plan on January 10 in the face of what he calls a “modest shortfall” projected at $22.5 billion.

To address the budget deficit, a series of funding delays, reductions, government efficiency improvements, fund shifts, borrowing and trigger reductions are proposed.

During a press conference, Governor Newsom said “not one dollar” is coming from the Rainy Day Reserve, which currently contains over $20 billion (this does not include reserves for public schools and other funds).

Instead, the governor’s plan reduces various state programs by a total of $5.7 billion, delays $7.4 billion in spending to future budget years and moves $4.3 billion to be paid for through bonds.

In addition, the governor’s budget contains $3.9 billion in trigger cuts, which could be restored next year if sufficient general fund dollars become available in January 2024.  The trigger cuts are primarily focused in the areas of transportation and climate.

Climate Smart Agriculture

Though certain programs are impacted by cuts, Ag Council appreciates that many of the grant programs critical to our members–though reduced–are not eliminated in the governor’s budget proposal. This includes: the Food Production Investment Program (FPIP), the State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program (SWEEP), and Healthy Soils.  Please click HERE to view the allocations in the governor’s proposal in a document provided by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA).

Water

Among the state appropriations for water, are targeted dollars for flood control. Specifically, the budget plan contains: $40.6 million to lower the risk of Delta levee failures, $25 million for Central Valley Flood Protection projects, and $135.5 million over two years for Urban Flood Risk Reduction.

The budget plan sets aside $125 million as Drought Contingency funding for purposes to be determined in the Spring when water data is available.

Funding Maintained for Multiple Programs

Funding is maintained in the governor’s budget for the following agricultural, climate and water programs and projects (please go to the budget summary link below for more details):

  • Water conveyance
  • Water storage infrastructure
  • FARMER (ag equipment grants)
  • LandFlex
  • Multi-Benefit Land Repurposing Program
  • Farm to School
  • Livestock methane reduction programs
  • SGMA implementation

What’s Next?

Legislators will review the governor’s budget proposal and conduct hearings over the next few months before developing a final state budget, which the Legislature must approve by June 15.

Ag Council will participate in the budget hearings and conduct outreach with legislators to support funding to improve our water supply and protect critical climate smart agriculture programs important to our members.

Budget Summary

Click HERE view the budget allocations and changes in the areas of agriculture, climate, and water in a document provided by CDFA.