LAO 2006-07 Budget Analysis: Resources

Analysis of the 2006-07 Budget Bill

Legislative Analyst's Office
February 2006

California Integrated Waste Management Board (3910)

The California Integrated Waste Management Board (CIWMB), in conjunction with local agencies, is responsible for promoting waste management practices aimed at reducing the amount of waste that is disposed in landfills. The CIWMB administers various programs that promote waste reduction and recycling, with particular programs for tires, used oil, and electronics. The board also regulates landfills through a permitting, inspection, and enforcement program that is mainly enforced by local enforcement agencies that are certified by the board. In addition, CIWMB oversees the cleanup of abandoned solid waste sites.

The budget proposes expenditures of $190.2†million from various funds (primarily special funds) for support of CIWMB. This is a decrease of $10.1†million (or 5†percent) from estimated 2005-06 expenditures. This decrease is largely a result of reduced expenditures due to lowered revenue projections in the used oil recycling program ($2.8†million) and the electronic waste program ($7.2†million). The budget also proposes several expenditure increases, most notably $5.2†million for the tire recycling program (for various activities, including enforcement and rubberized asphalt market development), $466,000 for greenhouse gas reduction as part of the Governorís Climate Change Initiative, and $223,000 for increased enforcement as part of the Governorís Environmental Enforcement Initiative.

Funding Proposal for Environmental Education Fails to Follow Legislative Direction

We withhold recommendation on $3.5†million proposed for the Environmental Education Initiative pending receipt of a revised funding proposal that is consistent with legislative direction on how the program should be funded.

Background. Chapter†926, Statutes of 2001 (SB 373, Torlakson), established an office in CIWMB and charged it with the development and implementation of an environmental education program for elementary and secondary schools in the state. The environmental principles that are to be included in the program are very broad in scope and relate to, but are not limited to, the following topics: air, water, energy, pest management, forestry, fish and wildlife resources, toxic and hazardous waste management, resource conservation and recycling, and integrated waste management.

Chapter†665, Statutes of 2003 (AB 1548, Pavley) further defined the requirements of the program (referred to as the Education and the Environment Initiative [EEI]), and established the Environmental Education Account (EEA) to be administered by the Secretary for Environmental Protection for purposes of funding this program. Chapter†665 permitted the account to receive funds from public or private organizations as well as proceeds from state or federal court judgments.

Chapter†581, Statutes of 2005 (AB 1721, Pavley), provided a role for the State Board of Education and the Superintendent of Public Instruction in determining the appropriateness of incorporating the environmental principles in instructional materials and sample curricula, respectively. It also authorized a state agency that requires development or promotion of environmental education to contribute to the EEA. Chapter†581 also authorized a storm water permittee to contribute to the EEA under specified circumstances.

Legislative Direction on How the EEI Should Be Funded. The 2005-06 Governorís Budget proposed to fund the EEI at a level of $3.5†million, most of which ($3.3†million, 94†percent) was to come from a single funding source-the Integrated Waste Management Account (IWMA). The IWMA receives its revenues from ďtippingĒ fees on the disposal of waste at landfills. The balance of the funding was proposed from the Waste Discharge Permit Fund (WDPF). The WDPF receives its revenues from fees levied on permittees of the State Water Resources Control Board that discharge waste into the water.

While the Legislature ultimately approved the Governorís funding request for the EEI in 2005-06, it expressed its intent at budget hearings that, in future years, multiple funding sources would better reflect the broad scope of the program. Specifically, in the Supplemental Report of the 2005 Budget Act, the Legislature directed the Secretary for Environmental Protection to report by January 10, 2006, on a balanced funding mix for the EEI, which the Legislature intended to be incorporated in the 2006-07 Governorís Budget.

Legislative Direction Not Followed. At the time this analysis was prepared, the Secretary had not submitted its report on funding the EEI. The budget also proposes to fund the EEI from the same narrow sources as the current yearís budget-$3.3†million from IWMA and $200,000 from WDPF. This funding proposal is contrary to the Legislatureís clearly stated intent that funding for the EEI represent the programís broad environmental scope. For this reason, we withhold recommendation regarding this budget request and recommend that the Governorís May Revision include a revised funding proposal that better reflects the scope of the environmental education program, consistent with legislative intent.

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