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California Governor-Elect  Arnold  Schwarzenegger Announces Transition Team - 2003-10-10

California governor-elect Arnold Schwarzenegger has announced members of his transition team, including a Florida official who will oversee an audit of California finances. Mr. Schwarzenegger says Democrats and Republicans will help shape his administration.

Just two days after winning a historic recall election, Mr. Schwarzenegger announced the team that will help him build an administration for the time he assumes the governorship, probably next month. He says he is getting help from many quarters.

"You will see a very diversified team of people on the list," he said. "You will see people that are to the left, people that are to the right, and people that are to the center."

The nearly 70 advisors include the Democratic mayors of Los Angeles and San Francisco, Jim Hahn and Willie Brown, and former U.S. Secretary of State George Shultz, a Republican.

The Republican governor-in-waiting stressed that the most important task that faces the new team is sorting out California's troubled finances.

"We need to do it the right way, the legal way, the way it always has been done in California, rather than brushing the debt under the rug and pretend like we don't have that debt, and we don't have that deficit and all those kinds of things," he said. "We want to expose everything, let the people see what's going on."

Mr. Schwarzenegger pointed out that California's debt next year, already projected at $8 billion, may actually be higher than $10 billion. And he announced the appointment of Florida's budget director, Donna Arduin, as finance director of his transition team. The Florida official was given a leave of absence by her boss, Governor Jeb Bush, the president's brother. Ms. Arduin said she would start her assessment in California immediately. "We're going to get to work this afternoon, so as soon as we get to work, we'll be able to get done with the audit," she said. The the audit, she added, will be finished by the January deadline for next year's preliminary budget.

In Sacramento, outgoing Governor Gray Davis, a Democrat, urged his cabinet members to help with the transition to the new administration.