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August 8, 2011 -
LAO State Finance Director Jason Sisney appears on the news interview program The Maddy Report, where he is questioned about public employee pensions. His interview is contained in the first two segments of this five segment program.
View on YouTube.
July 7, 2011 - Beginning in 2008, the Unemployment Insurance (UI) funds of many states, including California’s, were under stress and soon became insolvent. Many states sought loans from the federal government. As of June 2011, California’s outstanding federal loan totaled over $10 billion. Three federal proposals have recently been introduced to address the insolvency issue. All three would improve the solvency of California’s UI fund and two would likely eliminate California’s UI fund deficit by 2016. Regardless of whether Congress acts, we recommend that the Legislature ensure implementation of a long–term solvency plan by 2014. If federal reforms are enacted, it is likely that no additional action by the Legislature will be necessary. However, if no federal reforms are enacted, it will be critically important for the Legislature to adopt its own long–term solvency plan. We recommend that the Legislature consider an approach which includes both increased employer contributions and decreased benefits for UI claimants.
April 8, 2011 - We reviewed the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Bargaining Unit 6 (Correctional Peace Officers) and Unit 13 (Stationary Engineers). If adopted, the MOUs would result in increased state costs in the current year, savings in 2011-12, and costs thereafter. Overall, the MOUs would reduce state Bargaining Unit 6 and 13 employee compensation costs in 2011-12 by about 3.6 percent.
April 1, 2011 - We reviewed the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Bargaining Unit 9 (Professional Engineers in California Government) and Unit 10 (California Association of Professional Scientists). If adopted, the MOUs would result in increased state costs in the current year, savings in 2011-12 and 2012-13, and net cost thereafter. Overall, the MOUs would reduce state Bargaining Unit 9 and 10 employee compensation costs in 2011-12 by about 6 percent.
March 25, 2011 - We reviewed the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Bargaining Unit 7 (California Statewide Law Enforcement Association). If adopted, the MOU would result in increased state costs in the current year, savings in 2011-12, and net cost thereafter. Overall, the MOU would reduce state Bargaining Unit 7 employee compensation costs in 2011-12 by 2.8 percent.
March 16, 2011 - We reviewed the proposed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for Bargaining Unit 2 (California Attorneys, Administrative Law Judges, and Hearing Officers in State Employment [CASE]). If adopted, the MOU would result in increased state costs in the current year, savings in 2011-12, and net cost thereafter. Overall, the MOU would reduce state Bargaining Unit 2 employee compensation costs in 2011-12 by 3.5 percent.
February 10, 2011 - In this 15-minute video, LAO State Finance Director Jason Sisney describes why public employee retirement costs have risen substantially in recent years for California governments and the Legislature's options for creating new types of retirement benefits for future state and local employees. At the same time, as Sisney discusses, the Legislature may have to identify new funding soon to address substantial unfunded liabilities in the teachers' and University of California retirement systems, among others.
February 3, 2011 - Presented to Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 4 on State Administration
February 1, 2011 - Presented to Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 5 on Corrections, Public Safety and the Judiciary
January 26, 2011 - The Governor proposes over $580 million in General Fund budget solutions for state employee compensation and state operations. In this handout we provide an overview of state employment, consider the erosion of anticipated current-year savings, summarize and assess the Governor’s proposals for 2011-12, and discuss alternative options available to the Legislature to increase savings in employee compensation.
December 22, 2010 - We reviewed the recently ratified labor agreements with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1000, the largest state employee union. The administration estimates that the state's net savings under the proposed agreements will be $383 million ($164 million General Fund) in the current fiscal year—compared with costs negotiated in prior Local 1000 memoranda of understanding (MOUs). The administration’s estimates are generally reasonable, but we (1) discuss concerns we have with the administration’s assumption that leave days will not result in overtime costs or productivity losses, and (2) compare the MOUs’ costs with the previous three-day-per-month furlough program. Finally, we discuss the current status of state employee collective bargaining and major employee compensation policies currently affecting executive branch employees.
October 20, 2010 - In this short video, Todd Bland, Director of the Social Services Section at the LAO discusses the report "California's Other Budget Deficit: The Unemployment Insurance Fund Insolvency."
October 20, 2010 -
California's Unemployment Insurance (UI) program became insolvent in 2009, ending that year with a shortfall of $6.2 billion. Absent corrective action, the fund deficit is projected to increase to approximately $20 billion at the end of 2011. This report looks at the history of the UI program, compares California's program to those in other states, examines different scenarios for addressing the insolvency, and makes recommendations to the Legislature for solving this difficult problem.
July 15, 2010 - In our required fiscal analysis of six proposed collective bargaining agreements, we find that the memoranda of understanding (MOUs), if adopted, would produce state savings in 2010-11, little net budgetary impact in 2011-12, and some increasing state costs for one or more years thereafter. Over the long term (many decades), the MOUs' proposed changes in retirement benefits could produce significant state savings, but no actuarial analysis of these changes has yet been submitted by the administration. The Legislature will face a major decision whether and how to approve the proposed continuous appropriations for economic terms of the six bargaining agreements.