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November 16, 2020 - Presented to: Assembly Natural Resources Committee Hon. Laura Friedman, Chair Select Committee on Waste Reduction and Recycling Hon. Kevin McCarty, Chair
November 10, 2020 - In 2019 the Legislature passed and the Governor signed Chapter 120 (SB 200, Monning) establishing the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water (SADW) Fund, which provides up to $130 million annually for efforts to provide safe drinking water for every California community. The legislation tasked the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) with administering the funding and overseeing efforts to implement both short‑ and long‑term solutions to persistent drinking water problems. One year later, SWRCB has made good progress in establishing spending priorities, beginning to allocate funds and execute projects, and collecting essential data to identify the communities that should be targeted for improvements. However, the state is still in the very early stages of implementation. Given the serious threats to public health, safety, and environmental justice posed by existing drinking water deficiencies, the Legislature will want to continue conducting robust oversight over how efforts to rectify these conditions proceed.
October 20, 2020 - Presented to: Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3 on Resources and Transportation Hon. Richard Bloom, Chair
October 19, 2020 - This post discusses the administration’s recent notice to the Legislature, which estimates state emergency costs of $1.3 billion to fight this year’s wildfires. Provides context on the extreme wildfire season of 2020, as well as implications for the state budget.
October 5, 2020 - The budget package provides a total of $10.9 billion from various fund sources—the General Fund, bond funds, and various special funds—for programs administered by the California Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Agencies. This is a net decrease of $4.4 billion (29 percent) compared to 2019‑20 estimated expenditures.
August 10, 2020 - Encroaching seas and waves could result in negative impacts along California’s coast not only through increased flooding, but also by eroding beaches and cliffs, and by raising coastal groundwater levels. This report describes available research on how rising seas threaten California’s coast in seven categories: public infrastructure, private property, vulnerable communities, natural resources, drinking and agricultural water supplies, toxic contamination, and economic disruption.
August 4, 2020 - This report consists of three sections. First, in the background section, we describe (1) historical mining practices, (2) the risks AMLs pose to the environment and the physical safety hazards they cause, (3) the coordination across the many state and federal agencies to address AML issues, and (4) laws and programs governing the remediation of AMLs. In the second section of the report, we discuss key challenges to systematically remediating AMLs, such as a lack of a centralized statewide approach, land ownership issues, and lack of funding. In the third and final section, we recommend steps the Legislature could take to improve California’s approach to addressing the threats to public health and the environment caused by AMLs.
June 4, 2020 - The 2020-21 May Revision includes a $965 million Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) discretionary expenditure plan, plus a budget provision to make spending contingent on the amount of revenue collected in 2020-21. In this post, we (1) discuss a few potential 2020-21 revenue scenarios, (2) summarize the Governor’s May Revision GGRF expenditure plan, and (3) identify key issues for the Legislature to consider as it develops a 2020-21 GGRF spending plan in a period of high revenue uncertainty.
May 21, 2020 - Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 3 On Resources and Transportation Hon. Richard Bloom, Chair
5/24/20: Updated proposed appropriations from Proposition 68 (2018).
March 4, 2020 - Presented to: Senate Environmental Quality Committee Hon. Benjamin Allen, Chair and Senate Transportation Committee Hon. Jim Beall, Chair
February 27, 2020 - The Governor’s budget proposes $1.7 billion for the California Public Utilities Commission. In this post, we provide our recommendations on the proposed budget for the California LifeLine Program.
February 25, 2020 - In this report we assess several of the Governor's 2020-21 budget proposals in the natural resources and environmental protection program areas. This includes reviews of the Governor's proposals related to the Department of Toxic Substances Control, Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Department of Fish and Wildlife.
February 21, 2020 - While wildfires have always been a natural part of California’s ecosystems, recent increases in the severity of wildfires and the adverse impacts on communities have increased the focus on the state’s ability to effectively prevent, mitigate, and respond to wildfire risks. This report has two parts. First, we assess the state’s approach to addressing wildfire risks in light of the complex challenges that make an efficient and effective approach difficult. Second, we evaluate the Governor’s various wildfire‑related budget proposals in the absence of having a statewide strategic wildfire plan.
February 18, 2020 - Presented to: Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee Hon. Holly J. Mitchell, Chair
February 13, 2020 - This report assesses the Governor’s major 2020-21 budget proposals related to climate change. The four proposals we evaluate are the Governor's (1) cap-and-trade expenditure plan ($965 million), (2) expanded climate adaptation research and technical assistance activities ($25 million), (3) new Climate Catalyst loan fund ($250 million), and (4) climate bond ($4.75 billion).