The state of California will be issuing IOU's instead of cutting checks. Many of the IOU's will go to citizens expecting their tax refunds.
Question: Can the citizens send the state IOU's when they've blown all of their money? Can they send IOU's to cover their mortgages, utilities, etc.?
Answer: No, they cannot. When citizens owe money, they owe money and face dire consequences (fines, jail, foreclosures, property seizures, etc.) if they cannot pay up. The state of California is a large government entity, so it plays by a different set of rules.
Let's suppose that the state of California were to play a game of basketball. In this game, both sides must follow the rules--until the state starts missing shots. Then the team's coach/governator announces the implementation of special government rules. Under the new rules, the state can travel, hack, go out of bounds, and pretty much anything else until they've caught up to the regular folks.
California's government likes to think of itself as having some kind of special privilege to spend, and once governments start acting like they can break or bend the rules, the people are in trouble.