California Faces Projected $54 Billion Deficit Through Summer 2021

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California faces the worst budget deficit in the state's history, at $54 billion.  That's according to an analysis released Thursday by the state Department of Finance.  The projected shortfall comes after a $21 billion surplus last year, and as the state continues to reel from the coronavirus pandemic, which has thrown more than 4 million Californians into unemployment. We’ll talk about what the deficit could mean for schools, social services, and the state’s response to the virus. 


Scott Shafer, senior editor for KQED’s California Politics and Government desk; co-host of KQED's "Political Breakdown"

John Myers, Sacramento bureau chief, Los Angeles Times