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The 2022-23 Budget: Department of Toxic Substances Control Reform Implementation

January 25, 2022 - In this post, we provide a description and analysis of the Governor’s 2022-23 budget proposals to spend the additional revenues the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) is expected to receive from last year’s governance and fiscal reform. Overall, we find that the proposals are consistent with the information the Legislature used as the basis for approving DTSC’s governance and fiscal reform. However, we recommend the Legislature continue to conduct oversight of the programmatic expansions being proposed and to revisit staffing levels in future years.

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The 2022-23 Budget: Cap-and-Trade Expenditure Plan

January 25, 2022 - In this post, we describe the Governor's cap-and-trade expenditure plan, evaluate the revenue assumptions used to determine the amount of funding available, and identify issues for legislative consideration.

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The 2022-23 Budget: Special Education Proposals

January 25, 2022 - This post provides background on various special education programs, describes the Governor's proposals related to these topics, and offers associated recommendations and issues for the Legislature to consider.

Hearing Handout

Overview of the Governor’s Budget (Handout)

January 19, 2022 - Presented to: Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee

Report

The 2022-23 Budget: Overview of the Governor's Budget

January 13, 2022 - On January 10, 2022, Governor Newsom presented his proposed state budget to the Legislature. In this report, we provide a brief summary of the proposed budget based on our initial review. In the coming weeks, we will analyze the plan in more detail and release several additional budget analyses.

Update (1/21/22): Includes a corrected estimate of Governor’s Budget proposals that are excludable under the State Appropriations Limit (SAL).

Report

An Analysis of the University of California’s Agricultural and Natural Resource Programs

January 6, 2022 - The University of California (UC) operates Agricultural Experiment Stations and Cooperative Extension—two programs that together focus on research and outreach involving agriculture and natural resource issues. This report provides an overview of these programs—discussing their statutory origin, structure, employees, and budget. The report also raises a few concerns with the state’s oversight of these programs and concludes by providing recommendations to enhance oversight.

Report

Options for Creating a Forestry Management Training Center

January 4, 2022 - Prepared in response to a requirement in the Supplemental Report of the 2021-22 Budget Act, this report identifies key design choices and options for establishing a forestry management training center in Northern California. Additionally, this report discusses some other strategies that the Legislature could consider pursuing—either in addition to or instead of establishing a new training center—to meet its policy goals.

Report

Overview of Special Education Funding Models

December 17, 2021 - This brief provides background on the state’s current funding allocation formula for special education, describes funding formulas used in other states, establishes a framework for evaluating these formulas, and offers some issues for the Legislature to consider.

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The 2021-22 Spending Plan: Child Care and Preschool

December 17, 2021 - This post summarizes the state’s 2021-22 spending package for child care and preschool. It is part of our Spending Plan series, which contains posts focused on each major sector of the state budget.

Hearing Handout

Overview of Funding for the Lanterman-Petris-Short Act

December 15, 2021 - Presented to: Assembly Committee on Judiciary Assembly Committee on Health

Report

Assessing California’s Climate Policies—Agriculture

December 15, 2021 - Chapter 135 of 2017 (AB 398, E. Garcia) requires our office to annually report on the economic impacts and benefits of California’s statutory greenhouse gas emission targets. This report provides our assessment of the effects of major programs in the agricultural sector that are aimed at reducing emissions and sequestering carbon, as well as identifies key issues for the Legislature to consider as it makes future policy and budget decisions.

Report

An Initial Review of the Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Program

December 13, 2021 - In recent years, as wildfires have increased in severity and damage, the Legislature has shown growing interest in state support of wildfire prevention efforts, including regional planning for forest health activities. The Regional Forest and Fire Capacity program (RFFC)—created in 2018—provides non‑competitive block grants to state conservancies, resource conservation districts, and other entities to facilitate regional coordination for forest health and wildfire resilience. These grants are intended to support regional planning, project development, demonstration projects, and community outreach. To implement these activities, grant recipients coordinate with and distribute funds to partnering entities within their regions. We prepared this report to provide an early review of RFFC’s implementation.

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Overview of Mental Health Services for College Students

December 10, 2021 - This post describes the mental health services available to students attending California’s public colleges and universities, highlights recent developments in student mental health since the start of the pandemic, and assesses the data currently available on student mental health issues. It concludes with a recommendation to enhance related reporting requirements applying to the three public higher education segments.

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Cap-And-Trade Auction Update and GGRF Projections

December 6, 2021 - Revenue from quarterly cap‑and‑trade auctions is deposited in the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF), and the funds are allocated to various climate‑related programs. In this post, we (1) summarize the results from the recent November 2021 cap‑and‑trade auction, (2) estimate future GGRF revenue and the amount available for discretionary spending under three different scenarios, and (3) identify issues for legislative consideration as it begins its 2022‑23 budget deliberations.

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Biannual Report on Truck Deliveries

December 1, 2021 - Chapter 226 of 2019 (AB 321, Patterson) created a sales and use tax exemption for certain truck deliveries. The law also directs our office to submit a biannual report measuring the number of truck deliveries affected by the new exemption. This post describes our attempts to fulfill this requirement.