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March 18, 2004 - Presented to the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee Number 2.
February 18, 2004 - The Governor's budget proposes a significant reduction in expenditures for the California Teleconnect Fund (CTF) program, which provides discounts on telephone service and other advanced telecommunication services that provide access to the Internet (such as digital subscriber line [commonly referred to as DSL] services) to schools, libraries, and qualifying hospitals and community-based organizations. While we have concerns regarding the operation of the current program, we find this underfunding to be contrary to legislative direction. To address this, we recommend the California Public Utilities Commission report at budget hearings on the projected funding requirements of the program in the budget year. Furthermore, if the CTF program requires additional funding in 2004-05, we identify options for the Legislature to consider to provide additional funding for the program.
February 18, 2004 - We find other park jurisdictions contract with the private sector for the delivery of types of services not contracted out by the Department of Parks and Recreation. We recommend a pilot program to further explore the pros and cons, as well as the costs and benefits, of expanding these public-private partnering activities in state parks.
February 18, 2004 - The Governor has deferred the submittal of most of his resources bond expenditure proposals to later in the spring, leaving major gaps in programs traditionally funded from bond funds. We provide a framework to assist the Legislature in evaluating the forthcoming bond proposals; this includes ensuring that the Governor’s proposals reflect legislative priorities for bond funding.
February 18, 2004 - The budget proposes eliminating the California Consumer Power and Conservation Financing Authority (CPA). Although CPA has been unable to fulfill its core mission to finance new power plants, this has largely been due to market conditions. Given significant uncertainties regarding the adequacy of the state’s energy supply to meet future demand, we think retaining some of CPA’s functions (either within or outside CPA) has merit
February 18, 2004 - The budget proposes to impose a new fee on timber owners to partially cover the costs incurred by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDFFP) in its review and enforcement of timber harvest plans (THPs) beginning in the current year. While this is a step in the right direction, we recommend the enactment of fee legislation that would go further by fully funding the costs of CDFFP and all other state agencies with THP review responsibilities.
February 18, 2004 - Development in and around floodplains has contributed to increased losses due to floods, but the state’s efforts to improve floodplain management have been reduced significantly in recent years. We recommend reducing the state’s share of funding for certain flood control projects to better reflect the local benefit from these projects. This would create future savings that could be used to make more strategic flood management investments and benefit the General Fund.
February 18, 2004 - The CALFED Bay-Delta Program—with a projected $6 billion funding gap—is at a funding crossroads. To date, the state has been the biggest funding contributor by far to the program, with federal and local governments and water users lagging in their support. We recommend a funding framework for CALFED that applies the beneficiary pays principle, including a fee on water users that take water from the Bay-Delta system.
April 23, 2003 - Handout presented to Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3
April 3, 2003 - Presented to Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 2
March 27, 2003 - Presented to Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3 on Resources; Assembly Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials Committee; Assembly Natural Resources Committee Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee
March 26, 2003 - Presented to Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3 On Resources
March 20, 2003 - Presented to Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3, Assembly Committee on Agriculture, Assembly Committee on Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials, on March 20th 2003.
March 5, 2003 - Hearing Handout presented to the Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3 on Resources