LOS ANGELES -- Gov. Pete Wilson of California signed off late Wednesday on a $52.1 billion budget for the state's fiscal 1994 year, which began yesterday.

The budget includes $38.5 billion of general fund spending.

One of the final budget trailer bills was held up until Wednesday because state Sen. David Roberti, D-Van Nuys, pushed for a change in the renters' tax credit provision. The new budget still suspends that tax credit for two years.

But Roberti convinced legislators to include a provision that will let voters decide next June whether to restore the renters' credit in the future and make it permanent. Roberti argued renters deserve the same constitutional protection as home owners, who can claim a property tax exemption for a small part of their assessed valuation.

Wilson signed the budget package once he received all the trailer bills, including the renters' tax credit legislation.

This year marks the first time since 1986 that California has had a budget in place by the start of the new fiscal year.

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