Spokesman Matt David says plummeting revenues have made the shortfall worse than previous projections.
Schwarzenegger said Wednesday that the shortfall for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, has grown to nearly $15 billion. That together with deficit estimates for the next budget year total $41.8 billion.
The governor was meeting with legislative leaders Thursday. He's trying to persuade them to agree to a combination of cuts and revenues to address the dramatic shortfall.
He has declared a fiscal emergency for the state but lawmakers have so far failed to take action.