Calif. lawmakers seek 1 vote to pass budget fix

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California lawmakers are locked in a frustrating search for one more vote to approve a $42 billion budget-balancing plan.

State leaders say it's needed to stave off fiscal disaster.

The plan continues to fall short of votes because rank-and-file Republicans have refused to agree to $14.4 billion in higher taxes. Lawmakers believe there are enough GOP votes in the Assembly, but the Senate has fallen short by one.

Meanwhile, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appears ready to make good on an earlier promise to begin the layoff process for thousands of state workers.

Notices will start going out Tuesday to 20,000 workers in corrections, health and human services and other agencies that receive money from the general fund. Administration officials are seeking to eliminate up to 10,000 jobs as part of the governor's order to cut 10 percent from the government payroll.

Under the state's process it would take months for anyone to actually be laid off.

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