Local Government Publications

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Presentation

San Diego County Regional Airport Authority: Assessing Governmental Accountability

November 17, 2006 - Presented to the Senate Local Government Committee.

Other

SANDAG: An Assessment of Its Role--Frequently Asked Questions

March 30, 2006 - A summary of frequently asked questions regarding our report: SANDAG: An Assessment of Its Role in the San Diego Region

Report

SANDAG: An Assessment of Its Role in the San Diego Region

March 30, 2006 - For over 20 years, San Diego region residents and local officials have debated whether their network of local and regional governmental agencies is well suited to addressing the region’s growing challenges. Some previous studies have found shortcomings in the region’s “governance system” and recommended changes, including modifications to the region’s council of governments (SANDAG). Chapter 743, Statutes of 2002 (SB 1703, Peace) and Chapter 508, Statutes of 2003 (AB 361, Kehoe), directed the Legislative Analyst's Office to study the San Diego region’s governance system and provide options for improving its accountability and effectiveness.
Frequently Asked Questions

Report

Budget Proposal Understates Mandate Costs

February 23, 2006 - The Governor’s Budget includes $242 million under the Commission on State Mandates’ budget item to: pay noneducation mandate claims in 2006-07, begin to retire the backlog of unpaid mandate claims, and provide a $50 million “set aside” to transform two mental health mandates into a categorical program. We find that the administration’s proposal does not provide sufficient resources to carry out its plan for 2006-07 and that the state likely will face a current-year mandate deficiency of about $140 million. We also review the way mandate information was provided in the administration's 2006-07 budget documents and make recommendations for improvement.

Report

Mental Health Mandates Continue to Pose Challenges

February 22, 2006 - State costs for reimbursing counties for two state-mandated programs to provide mental health services for school children have grown significantly in recent years. Moreover, serious weaknesses are evident in the system for delivering these services for children in special education programs. To help guide legislative policy-making in this area, we provide background information on these two mandates, assess the Governor’s budget and policy proposals relating to them, and outline the Legislature’s options for addressing these issues.

Handout

Using State General Obligation Bonds for Housing

January 25, 2006 - We review infrastructure issues related to housing. Presented to Assembly Housing and Community Development Committee.

Handout

State Oversight of Redevelopment

November 18, 2005 - Presented to the Senate Local Government Committee, Senate Transportation & Housing Committee, Assembly Housing & Community Development Committee, Assembly Local Government Committee, and Assembly Judiciary Committee

Report

Help America Vote Act Implementation Considerations

February 24, 2005 - The implementation of the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA) represents a significant opportunity for the Legislature to upgrade the state’s election systems and improve the administration of election laws. At a statewide level, the most pressing HAVA deadline is the requirement to have a federally compliant voter registration database operational by January 1, 2006. We offer a number of key considerations to assist the Legislature in implementing HAVA.

Handout

Open Meeting Act/Brown Act Reform Mandate

June 10, 2004 - Presented to Joint Legislative Budget Committee on June 9, 2004.

Report

An Assessment: Governor's Local Government Proposal

May 24, 2004 - The administration's local government proposal would make far-reaching changes to state-local finance. Our review of the proposal indicates that it would greatly increase the stability of local finance and increase accountability in the mandate process. We also find, however, that the proposal locks in place the current flawed state-local fiscal structure, imposes added fiscal stress on many local governments, and is not structured in a fashion that addresses long-term state fiscal goals. For the Legislature's consideration, we provide various recommendations to bring the proposal into greater alignment with legislative goals and state fiscal objectives.

Handout

Mandate Reimbursement Process

May 10, 2004 - Presented to Assembly Special Committee on State Mandates on May 10, 2004.

Handout

Key Elements of Mandate Reform—Major Recommendations Proposed

May 10, 2004 - Presented to Assembly Special Committee on State Mandates on May 10, 2004.

Handout

Key Elements of Mandate Reform

April 26, 2004 - Key Elements of Mandate Reform, presented to the Assembly Special Committee on State Mandates on April 21, 2004.

Report

Williamson Act—Subventions for Open Space

February 18, 2004 - The Williamson Act allows cities and counties to enter into contracts with landowners to restrict certain property to open space and agricultural uses. In return for these restrictions, the property owners pay reduced property taxes because the land is assessed at a lower-than-maximum level. We recommend that the Legislature provide for the gradual elimination of payments to local governments for the local revenue losses associated with Williamson Act contracts.

Report

Vehicle License Fee Issues

February 18, 2004 - The prior administration’s action to increase the VLF and the current administration’s subsequent action to reverse that increase have resulted in a number of issues of concern to the Legislature, including (1) the amount of VLF backfill that local governments did not receive during the current year “gap” period, (2) the amount of the backfill loan to the state from local governments, and (3) the amount of backfill to be provided to local governments experiencing hardship. We review the status of these issues and recommend that the State Controller provide information to the Legislature regarding the status of VLF backfill payments and gap period revenues. Accordingly, we withhold recommendation on the administration’s proposal to provide $51 million in local government hardship funding. We also recommend that the Legislature adopt the administration’s proposal to retain the current vehicle depreciation schedule adopted in conjunction with the 1991 program realignment.

Local Government Staff

Ann Hollingshead
(916) 319-8305
State Budget and Federal Funding
 
Lourdes Morales
(916) 319-8320
Local Government, Housing, and Homelessness
 
Nick Schroeder
(916) 319-8314
Public Employment, CalPERS, and Elections
 
Angela Short
(916) 319-8309
Teachers' Retirement Policy/ Child Welfare/ Community Care Licensing
 
Seth Kerstein
(916) 319-8365
Sales and Excise Taxes and Demographics