New Legislature Sworn Into Office In Sacramento
State lawmakers officially begin their next two-year session with the Legislature reshaped by the November election.
Voters gave Democrats two-thirds majorities in the Assembly and Senate, enough to raise taxes if they choose without Republican support. They also approved Gov. Jerry Brown's tax initiative, which will bring in about $6 billion a year.
If Democratic lawmakers don't blow through the new money, the state could see a budget surplus within two years.
Monday's events will be mostly ceremonial before the Legislature adjourns for the holidays, although some lawmakers will begin introducing bills to be taken up next year.
Lawmakers, along with California's statewide officeholders, also will be working for less pay starting Monday. The California Citizens Compensation Commission voted in May to reduce their salaries by 5 percent.
Among the lawmakers taking the oath of office at noon Monday are newly-elected District 1 Assemblyman Brian Dahle, and District 3 Incumbent Dan Logue. No one will be sworn in for the District 4 State Senate seat vacated by Doug LaMalfa. There will be a run-off election in January to fill the vacancy, after no single candidate won 50% plus one in the November election. Republican Jim Nielsen and Democrats Mickey Harrington will face off in the special election on January 8.
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