California Gov. Jerry Brown has reached a compromise that will leave just one tax initiative on the November ballot.
The governor and legislative leaders announced Wednesday that they had reached a deal with a coalition of groups for just one tax measure to help raise revenue to fix the state’s budget.
Brown and the coalition of education groups had already qualified their competing ballot initiatives. Experts have said that more than one measure would confuse voters.
The compromise referendum must still be qualified for the ballot through a signature-gathering campaign.
The new initiative would lower the proposed sales tax increase to 0.25% from 0.50% and increase income tax rates on the top brackets by 2% on families making more than $600,000, and 3% on those families with incomes above $1 million. Joint incomes over $500,000 would still increase by 1%, as Brown originally proposed.
The income tax increase would also be in place for another two years through 2018, while the sale tax hike would end after 2016.
In January, Brown unveiled a $92.6 billion spending plan for fiscal 2013 that attempts to tackle a deficit of $9.2 billion with cuts and tax increases.
The state’s Legislative Analyst’s Office has suggested that the governor’s revenue projections are excessive.
The budget leaned heavily on a passing a tax initiative that would help close the gap by temporarily raising sales and income taxes on the wealthy.
The governor is set to present a revised budget in May that should account for the new tax initiative. It will include additional budget cuts to be triggered if the tax measure fails in November.