Statement of SVLG CEO Ahmad Thomas On California Governor Gavin Newsom’s FY 2024-25 Budget Proposal

“Governor Newsom put forward a budget proposal that I believe is carefully crafted to close the $37.9 billion deficit while continuing to fund California’s top priorities, from addressing climate change to encouraging innovation and supporting public safety.

“We thank the Governor for preserving $10 billion for zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) incentives allocated in last year’s budget. This allocation represents a significant investment in accelerating the transition to electric vehicles, aligning with SVLG’s commitment to climate action and sustainable transportation. 

“We also applaud the continuation of the CalCompetes tax credit and grant program which supports R&D and is crucial to advancing California’s innovation economy. This measure is a strategic investment in the state’s future and positions California as a hub for cutting-edge technological advancements and economic growth.

“Meanwhile, SVLG urges the state to advance additional cost-effective measures to address California’s pressing environmental and climate infrastructure needs. 

“Specifically, we call on Governor Newsom and the state legislature to pass a robust Climate Bond to supplement the General Fund and address critical climate priorities for our state. This includes investing in restoring the San Francisco Bay wetlands to mitigate the impact of rising waters on critical habitat and infrastructure, businesses, and residents. A climate bond could also support high ROI funding for zero-emission vehicle incentives, charging, and transmission infrastructure in the South Bay to support a clean energy future.

“Overall, this budget proposal reflects a sound and measured response to the state’s financial situation while addressing critical issues like public safety, homelessness, and mental health reform. 

“SVLG stands ready to collaborate with the Governor and state legislative leaders to work towards a fiscally sound budget that promotes economic competitiveness, advances diversity and inclusion, mitigates climate change, and supports California’s infrastructure needs, all of which are vital to the Bay Area’s economic health and the well-being of our residents.”