Amid budget cuts, Calif. Gov. Brown still dreaming

By JASON DEAREN and JULIET WILLIAMS | January 6, 2012 | 5:40 PM EST

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown is dreaming of a bright future for his native California.

Even as he plans another round of budget cuts, the Democratic governor is remaining true to form and bucking national convention by proposing spending on the types of long-term projects most other governors and state legislatures are shunning.

His budget proposal for the 2012-13 fiscal year, released Thursday, commits seed money to a number of expensive projects he hopes will guide California in the decades to come.

The allocations underscore Brown's support for a $98 billion high-speed rail line that has been criticized for its ballooning costs and an array of alternative energy projects he hopes will lead to a cleaner environment and "green" jobs.

Brown calls them "a strong, confident investment in the future of California."