Tackling gaping deficits has become a major focus for governments across the globe over the past year, prompting many to unleash severe austerity programmes to get spending under control. The state of California has had more practice than most in dealing with this issue, having racked up a deficit over the past few years that would make many governments wince.
The state faced a $24.3 billion budget gap in 2008 – a figure that swelled to $60 billion in 2009. On both occasions, disagreements over h
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