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February 20, 2002 - A multiplicity of agencies, and evidence of certain duplicative activities and other problems, suggests that it is time for the state to "stand back" and assess how its various energy-related entities are organized and interacting with one another.
February 20, 2002 - The budget proposes to create General Fund savings by shifting some General Fund support for the State Water Resources Control Board's core regulatory program to fees. We discuss the Governor's proposal, make recommendations for fee legislation, and provide an assessment of the board's funding requirements over the longer term.
February 20, 2002 - Recently, the Department of Parks and Recreation has significantly increased its land acquisitions without addressing associated future development and operating costs. We provide options for funding development and operation, and make recommendations to reduce the likelihood that future acquisitions will result in unfunded obligations.
February 20, 2002 - We raise concerns with the Governor's proposal to (1) eliminate the General Fund support for emergency fire suppression, (2) reduce General Fund expenditures for "day-to-day" firefighting activities by increasing reimbursements, and (3) eliminate an existing legislative notification requirement. We also offer options for the Legislature to consider for funding fire protection services.
November 21, 2001 - A member-requested fiscal and policy analysis of Chapter 10x, Statutes of 2001 (SB 6x, Burton). This measure created the California Consumer Power and Conservation Financing Authority.
March 13, 2001 - We (a) evaluate the data on electricity supply and demand provided to the committee by the California Energy Commission (CEC) and the California Independent System Operator (ISO) on the summer 2001 electricity outlook, and (b) discuss any actions necessary for the estimates to be achieved.
February 21, 2001 - The most pressing challenge currently facing the state relates to its electricity crisis, especially in light of the multiplicity of ways that energy affects the economy and ultimately the state's finances.
February 21, 2001 - The Governor's budget proposes a number of augmentations totaling $1.2 billion ($1.1 billion General Fund) related to the state's energy crisis. These proposals would add nearly 100 positions across six departments.
February 21, 2001 - The 2001-02 budget proposes $414 million in state funds for CALFED. In determining a funding level for the program, there are a number of policy, fiscal, and programmatic issues for the Legislature to consider.
January 29, 2001 - We recommend that the Legislature hold oversight hearings to evaluate CALFED's proposal for the Environmental Water Account, implemented to acquire water for endangered species protection and recovery in the Bay-Delta region. There are many policy and implementation issues that the Legislature should consider before CALFED proceeds with the new program, including the program's costs, benefits, impacts, governance, and funding. Funding should be governed by the "beneficiary pays" principle.
January 24, 2001 - The state could do a better job at achieving its air quality goals if it exercised more effective oversight of the 35 local air districts. We think that a number of recent problems--including inconsistent and not fully effective local enforcement of air quality regulations--could have been reduced with such oversight. We make a number of recommendations to improve the state's role in air quality regulation.
January 5, 2001 - Because the state lacks a comprehensive land conservation plan, it is difficult to assess the effectiveness of "conservancies" that acquire and protect undeveloped lands. We recommend that, in the short term, the Legislature limit the creation of additional conservancies and enact sunset review provisions for existing conservancies. In the longer term, we recommend a review of the state's overall approach to land conservation.
May 25, 2000 - The two bond measures provide for a major investment in the state's natural resources. The purpose of the report is to identify actions the Legislature can take to ensure that the bond measures are implemented effectively, efficiently, and consistent with the Legislature's goals in enacting the measures. We also recommend actions to provide accountability for bond-funded expenditures.