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COVID-19: American Rescue Plan’s Major Health-Related Funding Provisions

May 6, 2021 - On March 11, 2021, the President signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP Act)—a $1.9 trillion coronavirus disease 2019 relief package. This post highlights the health-related provisions of the ARP Act that provide significant funding directly to state/local health care and public health agencies, rural hospitals, home- and community-based services programs, subsidized individual market health coverage programs, and public behavioral health services. Where possible, based on currently available information, we provide an estimate of the funding allocations to California governments and other entities in the state. While this post reflects our best understanding of the high-level content and implications of this legislation as of late April, we will update the post as new information and clarifications become available.

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Estimated Cost of Expanding Full-Scope Medi-Cal Coverage to All Otherwise-Eligible Californians Regardless of Immigration Status

May 5, 2021 - This budget and policy post responds to legislative requests for our office to estimate the costs of expanding comprehensive Medi-Cal coverage to all otherwise eligible Californians regardless of their immigration status. We estimate that nearly one million undocumented immigrants would gain full coverage under this expansion. Assuming a January 1, 2022 implementation, we estimate that the additional cost of expansion would be $790 million General Fund ($870 million total funds) in 2021-22. On an ongoing basis, we estimate the additional cost of the expansion would be $2.1 billion General Fund (nearly $2.4 billion total funds). Both our caseload and cost estimates are subject to significant uncertainty and rest on a number of key assumptions. Moreover, our ongoing estimates would be expected to change over time with medical inflation and changes in caseload and utilization.

Hearing Handout

How Did the State Respond to the Last Major Drought?

May 5, 2021 - Presented to: Assembly Committee on Water, Parks, and Wildlife Hon. Eduardo Garcia, Chair

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A Framework for Allocating Federal Recovery Funds

May 4, 2021 - In the coming months, the Legislature will face important decisions over how to use California’s share of the state fiscal recovery funds included in the American Rescue Plan (ARP). Estimated at approximately $26 billion, the recovery funds should go a long way toward covering the state’s direct and indirect costs arising from the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Moreover, beyond a relatively broad set of pandemic-related parameters, the ARP likely provides states with considerable flexibility over how to allocate the funds, presenting the Legislature with a unique opportunity. In this post, we lay out some guiding principles for the Legislature to consider as it formulates a plan for using the fiscal recovery funds.

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Third Round of Federal Higher Education Relief Funding

May 3, 2021 - The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 is the third piece of federal legislation that provides substantial COVID-19 relief funding directly to colleges and universities. This post recaps the key elements of the first two rounds of relief funding, then describes the key elements of this third round.

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Overview of Federal Relief for K-12 Education and Child Care

April 29, 2021 - Since March 2020, the federal government has passed three relief packages that assist K-12 schools and child care providers in their response to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. This post provides a brief summary of how the three federal relief packages affect K-12 education and child care and describes how the state has used these federal funds, as of April 2021.

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The 2021-22 Budget: The Governor’s Proposition 2 Proposals

April 26, 2021 - This post provides an overview of the Governor’s proposals related to Proposition 2 (2014). We provide background on how the measure works, and then summarize and comment on the Governor’s Proposition 2 reserve and debt payment proposals.

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Early Budget Actions to Support In-Person K-12 Instruction and Address Learning Loss

April 23, 2021 - On March 5, 2021, the Governor signed Chapter 10 (AB 86, Committee on Budget), which provides additional one-time Proposition 98 funding to schools for providing in-person instruction and addressing student learning loss due to the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. This post describes the major components of the legislation.

Report

The State Appropriations Limit

April 21, 2021 - This report: (1) describes how appropriations limits work for the state, school districts, and local governments in California; (2) explains why the limit is a constraint for state government; and (3) concludes with a variety of short- and long-term policy options—both of which we think the Legislature will need to take—in response to the issue.

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Enhancing Federal Financial Participation for Consumers Served by the Department of Developmental Services—An Interim Update

April 19, 2021 - The Supplemental Report of the 2020-21 Budget Act requires our office to evaluate options for enhancing federal financial participation through Medi-Cal for consumers served by the Department of Developmental Services. This post provides an interim update of our initial findings and preliminary assessment. A final report will be delivered to the Legislature in the late summer.

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Adoption of April 2021 Wildfire and Forest Resilience Early Action Package

April 16, 2021 - On April 13, 2021, the Governor signed SB 85 (Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review), which amends the 2020-21 Budget Act to provide additional funding for various wildfire and forest resilience activities. This post provides a brief summary of this funding package.

Hearing Handout

Overview of State Funding and Audit of CDAA

April 16, 2021 - Assembly Budget Subcommittee No 5. on Public Safety

Hearing Handout

Resentencing, Diversion, and Reentry Programs

April 16, 2021 - Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 5 on Public Safety

Report

Improving Parolee Substance Use Disorder Treatment Through Medi-Cal

April 14, 2021 - This report provides background on the ways parolees access substance use disorder treatment (SUDT) through providers who are typically either funded by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation or through Medi-Cal (the state’s Medicaid program). It assesses the trade-offs between these two approaches and recommends steps to improve the quality of service and create savings by increasing the utilization of Medi-Cal for parolee SUDT.

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Tax Credit Expansions in the American Rescue Plan

April 13, 2021 - The federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) that passed on March 11 expanded a number of federal income tax credits. This piece will briefly describe the changes to three credits that apply to many lower-income and middle-income filers: the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), the Child Tax Credit (CTC), and the Child and Dependent Care Expenses Credit (“child care credit”). We also discuss changes to the dependent care exclusion which is linked to the child care credit.