State Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg plans to sue Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger for making nearly $500 million in last-minute cuts to the budget, according to the Chron. The governor's cuts could harm social and health programs for the poor and could lead to the closure of up to 100 state parks. Steinberg also said that if the cuts are allowed to stand they would set a "dangerous precedent" and upset the state government's balance of power, according to the Chron. But Steinberg's suit could also create financial uncertainty for the state.
At issue is whether the governor has the authority to use his line-item-veto powers to cut programs that were already slashed by the Legislature or whether he can only cut new spending. The state's Legislative counsel has said it's the former and thus Schwarzenegger's cuts were illegal. Steinberg took over as Senate leader from Don Perata late last year.