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FROM THIS EPISODE

After years of crippling deficits, state government is not just out of the red, it'll have a surplus. That's partly due to Governor Brown's tax increase, passed by the voters last year. So how should the money be spent? Can we finally restore draconian cuts in services for the aged, poor and disabled? Is it time to cut taxes? Could too much of either of those good things mean a return to the bad days of deficit? Also, has the time when government service meant a guaranteed pension come to an end?

Image-for-WWLA.jpgOn our rebroadcast of today's To the Point, Bitcoins are now worth a total of $1 billion, not bad for a virtual currency that's four years old and not backed by a central bank. Bitcoins are a way to make payments on the Internet — without any fees. They're also a way to lose money fast. We hear more about digital technology and the future of money.

 

Banner image: 401(K) 2013

Producers:
Katie Cooper
Andrea Brody
Sonya Geis

Main Topic California Out of the Red, How Will New-Found Riches Be Spent? 16 MIN, 26 SEC

Last year, the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst projected that new growth in California's economy might lead to a state surplus — if the Assembly, the Senate and Governor Brown were restrained about this year's budget. They were, and the forecast for next year is even more promising.  How should it be spent? We hear different opinions.

Guests:
Jason Sisney, Legislative Analyst's Office (@LAO_CA)
Holly Mitchell, California State Senate (@HollyJMitchell)
Dan Weintraub, California Health Report (@HealthyCal)

Reporter's Notebook Detroit's Bankruptcy Ruling Could Have a Big Impact in California 5 MIN, 46 SEC

The gold-plated promise used to be that a career in government meant a guaranteed safe and sound pension. Yesterday, a federal judge ruled that bankrupt Detroit could cut its municipal pension plans. What will that mean for Vallejo, Stockton and San Bernardino, California cities that have declared bankruptcy? Dale Kasler is business and economics reporter at the Sacramento Bee.

Guests:
Dale Kasler, Sacramento Bee (@dakasler)

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