California Gov. Jerry Brown approved $3 million in taxpayer-funded legal aid to illegal alien children fighting deportation hearings–yet vetoed $100 million for state-funded universities, citing low property tax receipts.
The funding for lawyers for the illegal alien minors comes amidst a nationwide push by outgoing U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to recruit legal talent to represent the children and teenagers–who often cross the U.S.-Mexico border unaccompanied– against law enforcement proceedings. Holder is the nation’s chief law enforcement officer. President Barack Obama and other Democrats have supported the legal recruitment effort.
“Helping these young people navigate our legal system is the decent thing to do and it’s consistent with the progressive spirit of California,” said Gov. Brown in a statement posted on his official website. He noted that the $3 million would not go directly to the illegal aliens, but to nonprofit organizations advocating for them.
“With the stroke of a pen, Governor Brown reaffirmed California’s commitment to doing its part to address the unprecedented humanitarian crisis at [the] border involving Central American youth,” added State Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) in a statement quoted by the Los Angeles Times.
At the same time, Brown vetoed $50 million each in deferred maintenance funding for the University of California and California State University systems. “Unfortunately, property tax revenues were below budget estimates and the additional $200 million was not available for deferred maintenance this year,” he wrote.
Senior Editor-at-Large Joel B. Pollak edits Breitbart California and is the author of the forthcoming ebook, Wacko Birds: The Fall (and Rise) of the Tea Party, available for Amazon Kindle.
Follow Joel on Twitter: @joelpollak