Friday, January 29, 2016   The CSAC Bulletin
CSAC Urges Governor to Sign AB 21- Marijuana Clean-Up Bill
Assembly Bill 21 (Wood) will fix the inadvertently enacted March 1, 2016 deadline for localities to have cultivation ordinances in place, otherwise the state would become the sole licensing authority for medical marijuana cultivation. On Thursday, the State Assembly voted 73-0 to approve the measure and it was immediately sent to the Governor. CSAC is urging him to sign it.

Specifically, AB 21 would strike Health and Safety Code Section 11362.777(c)(4), as enacted by AB 243 (Chapter 688, Statutes of 2015), which provides that if a local government does not have land use regulations, or ordinances regulating or prohibiting marijuana cultivation in place by March 1, 2016, the Department of Food and Agriculture will be the default licensing entity for all such jurisdictions. The March 1 deadline has created significant confusion at the local level resulting in some jurisdictions rushing to enact local regulations ahead of March 1. CSAC has asserted that eliminating the deadline will appropriately allow counties to utilize existing approval processes and timelines when considering their own approach to regulating the cultivation of medical marijuana.

AB 21 would also correct another inadvertent error in AB 243, regarding the last sentence of Health and Safety Code Section13262.777 (g) which provides local control over personal grows and patient caregiver grows of medical marijuana. While counties were happy to see this provision in AB 243, its inclusion was a mistake and Assembly Member Wood committed to repeal the last sentence of (g) in a letter to the Assembly Journal on the last night of the 2015 legislative session.

Again, while counties would have preferred to see the last sentence in Section (g) retained in full, we were concerned that repealing it entirely could result in the loss of county regulatory control on personal grows as well as threaten the integrity of the other local control provisions included throughout the new medical marijuana regulatory framework. The amended Section (g) represents a compromise between the cities, counties, police chiefs and patient rights advocates. It specifies the that the existing exemption from State licensure for personal grows and patient caregiver grows does not limit or prevent a city or county from exercising its police authority under the California Constitution Article XI, Section 7. We believe this provision will still allow counties to move forward in their local control efforts with respect to issues involving land-use decisions concerning the cultivation of medical marijuana.


Governor's MCO Fix is Moving
Governor Jerry Brown has released a proposal for his MCO fix and hopes to have it heard in the Special Session on Health Care next week.

The Managed Care Organization (MCO) tax is of critical importance for county funding and other Medi-Cal services, and the Governor’s proposal will spare health plans any net costs or losses while realizing $1.3 billion for critical Medi-Cal services.

MCO funding is vital to all counties. It provides implementation funding for the Coordinated Care Initiative (CCI), as well as other critical state-level Medi-Cal services. Furthermore, continuation of the CCI is tied to the county In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Maintenance of Effort (MOE) and the eventual plan to transition collective bargaining for IHSS workers from each county to the state. If the current MCO funding for the CCI is not continued, it could jeopardize the IHSS MOE and eventual transfer of collective bargaining. The loss of MCO funding for other Medi-Cal programs would also result in statewide cuts that could affect counties.

Because of this, CSAC is urging counties to contact their local legislative delegations to explain the specific potential local impacts and importance of passing an MCO fix as soon as possible.

Time is running out for California to develop a new MCO funding plan that passes muster with the federal government during the ongoing special session. The current MCO tax expires June 30, 2016, and the Brown Administration is seeking a two-thirds vote of the Legislature on a fix to this problem as soon as possible.

Achieving the two-thirds vote necessary in the Legislature to provide the fix has remained elusive, however. Because it is called a tax, the MCO fix has encountered opposition from Republican legislators.

The Governor’s proposal requires all health plans to contribute funds that would be used by the state to draw down federal funding of at least an estimated $1.3 billion. In return, health plans would receive discounts on their Gross Premium Taxes and Corporate Taxes, as well as receive supplemental payments from the federal funds drawn down by the state, creating a net neutral balance for their participation. While the Governor’s proposal is called the MCO “tax,” it ensures that participating plans do not experience any net costs or losses.

Specific details of the proposal also continue to be refined and negotiated. CSAC is in close communication with local and county-run health plans to ensure minimal impact on these providers, especially in regards to their commercial lines of business, such as IHSS providers. The Governor is hoping to begin work on the special session next week.


Transportation Commission Cuts Capital Project List

Local Transportation Funding Also on the Decline

Last week the California Transportation Commission (CTC) took action to lower its funding estimate for the State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP) due to continuing decreases in fuel tax revenues. On January 27, the Commission sent the Legislature a letter describing the worsening fiscal condition of the state transportation system and outlining projects that will be indefinitely delayed as a result of decreased revenues. The reductions in revenue prompting the CTC action last week also affect the funding available for the local street and road system, as the primary source of funding for maintaining and operating local roads is the state gasoline excise tax.

Due to low prices and changes in consumption patterns, funding for local roads is down about 25% over the last two fiscal years. CSAC is working with public works departments in every county to identify the impacts of these ongoing revenue reductions. In the coming weeks, we will continue our push for a comprehensive transportation funding package that invests at least $3 billion annually in local streets and roads. We urge counties to reach out to their legislative representatives to ensure they are aware of these ongoing revenue reductions. Counties can also adopt resolutions supporting CSAC’s priorities for new transportation funding.

From Our Policy Sections
Don't miss these important items in our policy sections:

Governor Announces Publlic Safety Reforms
Administration of Justice

CSAC Opposes Houshold Hazardous Watse Bill
Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources

CalPERS Requests Participation in Pension Prefunding Option Survey
Employee Relations and Administrative Services

Tax Amnesty for Marijuana Dispensaries – Comments Requested
Finance and Operations

CSAC, County Affiliates to Present Whole Person Care Webinar
Health and Human Services

Strategic Growth Council to Hold Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Grant Program Workshops
Housing, Land Use and Transportation

LAO, Finance Differ on Revenue Projections

A familiar theme is emerging in the 2016 budget discussions: disagreement about revenue estimates. Both the California Department of Finance and the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) make revenue projections – and frequently, they do not align. Typically, the Finance Department forecasts more conservatively than the LAO.

This week, the LAO released a new report critiquing Finance’s property tax revenue estimates as included in the Governor’s January budget proposal. While property taxes are local government revenues, projections are included in the state budget because of the complex interactions with streams of state funding.

The LAO’s estimates clock in $1 billion higher than the Finance estimates over the next two years. The LAO analysis also identifies flaws in the Department's methodology, which “systematically underestimates” returning tax increments following RDA dissolution. The differences are primarily due to assumptions related to RDA dissolution and growth in property values.

The LAO report does note that their assumptions and projections are based on economic expansion, and a slowdown or recession could have a negative impact on property tax revenue. However, the report suggests that there is typically a lag in the impact on property values, meaning that the reduction to property tax revenue would be delayed by several years.

CSAC Institute Offering February Courses Around the State
February marks the kick-off of the new series of technology management classes with “Performance Metrics and Customer Value Management.” Classes in media relations in crises, leadership in ambiguity, customer service and understanding pensions are all offered next month. And for those of you who make presentations, brush up on your skills in the popular “Polish Your Presentation” class. Read on for more!

Download the Course Schedule for more details on all the classes offered by the CSAC Institute and Register Now. Classes are an affordable $129 each and include class materials and lunch. Discounts for multiple registrations.

Create better value for - and relationships with - IT customers
IT Performance Metrics and Customer Value Management
Thursday, February 4 - 10:00 to 3:30 - Sacramento

NEW! Country governments create value for citizens through the services they deliver. Doing so effectively and efficiently not only requires a keen understanding of how government service quality is impacted by the internal systems and processes which enable them, but also requires establishing metrics around these systems and processes in order to measure performance - after all if it isn't measured, it isn't managed. This facilitative course is designed to help county IT professionals understand the metrics that matter. By taking a customer-centric approach, participants will understand how to establish metrics across IT services, applications, and infrastructure, optimize performance over time, and communicate the benefits realized to the rest of the organization through a series of interactive discussions, group activities, and individual exercises.


Prepare for responding to organizational crises
When Bad Things Happen: Managing the Media in Crises and Emergencies
Friday, February 12 - 10:00 to 3:30 - San Diego

Counties are prepared for natural disasters ... but what about federal investigations, embezzlement of funds, arrest or death of an official, program failure, scandals uncovered and other unexpected situations. Are you prepared? This course focuses on the communications principles required to properly anticipate and respond to organizational crises. A specific set of steps are examined to prepare a communications response, including role assignments, strategies and tactics which target affected audiences, key messages which tell the county's story, and delivering the response via the media and other communications vehicles. Techniques are shared for response options, sample messages, understanding media perspective and how to avoid common pitfalls and missteps.

Instructors: Sheri Benninghoven, APR, President of SAE Communications; and Scott Summerfield, an expert in public agency strategic communications.


Tools for tackling unprecedented challenges
Coping with Ambiguity: Leadership for Challenging Times
Thursday, February 18 - 10:00 to 3:30 - Contra Costa County

375 Counties operate in complex and changing environments. Within these unpredictable economic contexts and unprecedented challenges, county leaders find themselves trying to make past practices and models fit current realities. But that may be a mistake in coping with ambiguity. This class provides a new way to think about applying leadership practices - at both elected and executive levels - to help your county organization and community find new realities and ways of effectively working in uncertain times.

Instructor: Dr. Laree Kiely, president of the Kiely Group, and professor at the USC Marshall School of Business.


Create customer satisfaction in a county setting
Leveraging Customer Relationships: Balancing Satisfaction with Priorities
Friday, February 19 - 10:00 to 3:30 - Merced County

This course will help county managers and elected officials explore ways to create and enhance a customer service culture in their organization. Participants will explore how to balance customer service with regulations and requirements. The conversation will focus on what defines good customer service and a service culture. Lively discussions will provide tools to assess where you are, what the gaps are to be more service oriented, and how to get there. Participants discuss the elements of structure and process which support and recognize effective customer service, even in difficult regulatory situations. You will be able to network and brainstorm with your peers as well as learn practical strategies. Barriers to good customer service are examined along with service and performance measurements.

Instructors:
 Dr. Marilyn Manning, CEO, The Consulting Team, LLC; and Liz Kniss, Palo Alto City Council Member and former Santa Clara County Supervisor.


For experienced presenters wanting to "up" their presentations
Polish Your Presentation: Advanced Practices in Communication
Friday, February 19 - 10:00 to 3:30 - Sacramento County

This intensive course helps senior managers and elected officials better present their ideas with convection, control, and poise - and without fear. The course covers specific skills and advanced techniques for delivering professional presentations that get results. Participants examine their presentation style, learn to use tools to organize their presentation and communicate their thoughts, and handle difficult situations. A straightforward presentation model helps participants build their self-confidence and overcome the common mistakes which turn off audiences. Use of graphics and presentation tools are also examined. Through a lab, participants work on improving one of their own presentations.

Instructor: Bill Chiat, Dean of the CSAC Institute and an accomplished presenter with city, county and state governments.


Better understand a major component of the county budget
Unraveling Public Employment Pensions and Retirement Benefits
Friday, February 26 - 10:00 to 3:30 - Sacramento County

This course provides a policy overview of county retirement systems and examines other post employment benefits (OPEB) and their collective impact on county finances. It covers both PERS and 1937 Act programs, how they originated, the benefits, and how they are funded. Reporting requirements and county liabilities are part of the conversation. It unveils the mysteries of understanding costs and projections and explores options and case examples for funding, reforming and managing costs (including rate stabilization funds) of pension and OPEB systems. other post-employment benefits and their impact on county finances. An emphasis is placed on recent reforms to state law and county retirement systems and how is affecting county policies and operations.

Instructor: John Bartel, president of Bartel Associates, LLC and brings over 35 years experience in pension and retiree healthcare consulting.
What is the Future of California Elections?

With a theme of “building partnerships for a stronger democracy,” the Future of California Elections (FOCE) is offering a conference for election administrators, community organizations, and reform advocates. The conference will be held at the California Endowment in Los Angeles February 25-26. Conference information, including a detailed program and registration information, is available here. 

FOCE says that the conference will “showcase the successes and innovations that have resulted from collaborations in the field of elections in California and across the nation,” and that the program “focuses on the needs of California’s diverse voters and the importance of working in partnerships to ensure all voters can participate in California’s democracy.”

Election reform is gaining momentum in California and other states. As reported in the CSAC Bulletin last fall, several counties in California are conducting a pilot program to conduct elections wholly by mail.

Community Choice Aggregation Symposium Slated for San Jose
The Center for Climate Protection is organizing an all-day symposium on March 4 in San Jose to accelerate California’s shift to a clean energy economy. The Symposium provides a forum to exchange ideas about Community Choice Energy programs and to learn about current energy policy, regulations, markets, and technology.

The energy system of the future will be radically different from the energy system of today. The shift is already underway, driven by the need to reduce carbon emissions. Distributed renewable energy is displacing centralized fossil fuel power. Community Choice Energy can be a central part of accelerating this transition by creating more competition in the energy market, increasing consumer choice, fostering robust public private partnerships, containing costs and demonstrating the economic development potential of distributed energy resources.

The Creating the Clean Energy Economy symposium is a great venue to learn more about these issues; how Community Choice Aggregations are working in Sonoma and Marin Counties, and what steps you need to consider to start a CCA in your area.


Current Job Openings
Seekers:
For a full list of job openings posted with CSAC, visit our Public Sector Jobs Page on our website.

Employers:
Find out how you can post recruitment notices with CSAC here.



Butte County
PRINCIPAL HUMAN RESOURCES ANALYST

Butte County
SENIOR HUMAN RESOURCES ANALYST

California Department of Child Support Services
CCSAC PROJECT OFFICER DIRECTOR

Contra Costa County
COMMUNITY LIBRARY MANAGER

El Dorado County
RIGHT OF WAY SUPERVISOR

El Dorado County
SUPERVISING AUDITOR-APPRAISER

Fresno County
SENIOR PERSONNEL ANALYST

Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Association
STAFF ASSISTANT

Marin County

ASSISTANT ENGINEER

Marin County
CODE ENFORCEMENT SPECIALIST

Solano County
STATIONARY ENGINEER

Sonoma County
COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER

Ventura County Transportation Commission
PROGRAM MANAGER, CAPITAL PROJECTS

Administration of Justice
For more information, contact Darby Kernan at 916-327-7500, ext. 537, Stanicia Boatner at 916-327-7500, ext. 503 or Amalia Mejia at 916-327-7500, ext. 514.

Governor Announces Public Safety Reform Initiative

On Wednesday, January 27th the Governor announced that he is amending an existing juvenile justice initiative to also include additional adult criminal justice reforms. The proposed initiative is a Constitutional amendment to give parole consideration for offenders sent to prison for a non-violent felony once they have completed the full term of their primary offense ( not including enhancements, consecutive sentences or alternative sentences). In addition, the initiative gives the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) full authority to award good time and program credits.

The juvenile portion of the initiative makes statutory amendments to Proposition 21, provisions enacted in 2000. The initiative limits when a juvenile can be tried in adult court, specifically, only if the court after a hearing considering specified factors (those in current law) determines the minor should be tried in adult court. The initiative removes the ability for prosecutors to direct file. It removes all presumptions requiring the court to weigh the factors and make the ultimate decision. The initiative will allow minors ages 14 and 15 who commit certain serious/violent offenses to be eligible for adult court; which is determined by the court.

CSAC’s Executive Director Matt Cate released this statement, “California counties will closely examine the Governor’s proposal. Per our Association’s procedures, our next step is to refer it to our Administration of Justice Policy Committee for consideration.”

“Counties have done an admirable job implementing adult and juvenile justice reforms that have shifted population and more responsibility onto local governments. In addition to housing more inmates in jails, counties are also supervising more offenders through probation and offering a variety of innovative alternatives to incarceration including mental health services, education, job training, substance use treatment and other services that reduce recidivism and improve public safety.”

“While much progress has been made, counties recognize that the state is still under Federal Court order to further reduce the prison inmate population. CSAC truly values the diversity of opinion among our members on issues of complex public policy and we want to make sure the Governor’s proposal is fully understood and vetted.”

If the measure qualifies, it will appear on the November 2016 ballot.For additional information: The Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act of 2016

Board of State and Community Corrections Pay For Success Grant Program Executive Steering Committee Meeting – February 4 

The Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) is holding its Pay For Success Grant Program
A Social Innovation Financing Project Executive Steering Committee (ESC) meeting February 4, 2016 from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm. Attached is a copy of the agenda.

Please contact Colleen Stoner at (916) 324-9385 or colleen.stoner@bscc.ca.gov for additional information about this notice, to submit written material regarding an agenda item or to request special accommodations for persons with disabilities. This agenda and additional information about the Board of State and Community Corrections may be found on our website at www.bscc.ca.gov.

Commission on Future of California’s Court System Holds Public Comment Session – February 8-9

The Commission on the Future of California’s Court System has posted concepts it will explore during its February 8-9 public comment session in San Francisco.

Members of the public can request to speak at the comment session or submit written comments either before or after the session. A link to the live audiocast of the public comment session—posted approximately 15 minutes before the session?will be available on the Futures Commission webpage. For more information, view the comment procedures.

The commission held a similar comment session on December 8, 2015 to solicit input on proposed concepts related to judgeships, trial court funding, court-ordered debt, and traffic infractions. The Futures Commission plans to hold a second public comment session later this year.

Legislation

The following information reflects legislation that was introduced in the 2015/16 legislative session. Bills introduced in the 2015 session must pass out of the house of origin by January 30, 2016. The following are Administration of Justice bills CSAC is tracking.

Parole Suitability: Notice
AB 898 (Gonzalez) – Support
As Amended January 4, 2016

AB 898 would require the Board of Parole Hearings, in the case of an inmate who is convicted of the murder of a firefighter, to provide notice of the parole suitability hearing to the fire department that employed the firefighter at the time of the incident. AB 898 passed off of the Assembly Floor with a 78-0 vote. The measure moves to the Senate.

Criminal Procedure: Trial Schedule Conflicts
AB 1272 (Grove) – Watch
AS Amended January 13, 2016

AB 1272 would require the court to make reasonable efforts to avoid scheduling a case involving a crime committed against a person with a developmental disability when the prosecutor has another trial set. AB 1272 passed off of the Assembly Floor with a 78-0 vote. The measure moves to the Senate.

Money Laundering
AB 1395 (Salas) – Watch
As Amended January 4, 2016

AB 1395 would provide law enforcement with the ability to use criminal remedies when combatting nefarious cases of organized, illegal gambling. AB 1395 incorporates violations of gambling laws into organized crime and money laundering statutes. AB 1395 passed off of the Assembly Floor with a 66-1 vote. The measure moves to the Senate.

SCR 88 (Runner) – Support
As Amended January 25, 2016

SCR 88 would proclaim the month of January 2016 as Human Trafficking Awareness Month and encourages all Californians to become educated about human trafficking and work to eliminate these criminal practices within and beyond our boundaries. This measure inspires organizations, businesses and communities, to host or sponsor and attend events that bring visibility and support to efforts made to recognize and combat human trafficking.

Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources
For more information, contact Karen Keene at 916.650.8181, or Cara Martinson at 916.650.8113.
Solid Waste

AB 45 (Mullin) – Oppose Unless Amended
As Amended January 21, 2016


AB 45, by Assembly Member Kevin Mullin moved off the Assembly floor this week on a 50-18 vote with several democrats voting no. CSAC has reviewed the amendments that were taken in the Appropriations Committee and unfortunately we still have several issues with the bill.

As amended on January 21st, AB 45 would now require Cal Recycle to develop one or more general household hazardous waste (HHW) model ordinances in consultation with affected industry and stakeholders; defines home generated pharmaceutical waste as HHW; allows for the creation of a nonprofit agency to make grants to local governments to assist with outreach and educations and other costs, and deems five million dollars as sufficient funding for these purposes. The bill would be repealed in 2019 if Cal Recycle determines that there is no nonprofit willing or able to meet parameters in the bill and deemed adequate by Cal Recycle. The bill also includes intent language that states that the role for manufacturers in the end-of-life management of their products should be based on the ability of manufactures and distributors to communicate with consumers.

CSAC opposes the role outlined for manufactures in this bill. We believe that industries that profit from these hard to manage products should have a significant stake in their proper management and disposal. The bill outlines the role for manufacturers as communicating with consumers and making grants to local governments. While an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) model may not be appropriate for all products, EPR is an excellent tool to employ for the producers of toxic and expensive-to-manage products, and those that pose additional health and safety risks such as sharps and pharmaceuticals. AB 45 also defines home generated pharmaceutical waste as HHW. We object to home generated pharmaceutical waste being included in the proposed comprehensive hazardous waste program, as neither our state nor federal regulating agencies currently regulate it as such.

This bill will now move to the Senate.

Water Storage

The California Water Commission announced that they will conduct a public hearing on March 16, 2016 to consider the adoption of regulations for the Water Storage Investment Program, including the quantification and management of the public benefits of water storage projects. Public comments regarding the proposed regulation will be accepted until 5:00 p.m. on March 14, 2016.

To view the proposed text of the proposed regulation, related documents, and information about the public comment period, visit the Commission’s website.

Lead Agency Review and Assistance Workshop

The office of Mine Reclamation is hosting a workshop to preview and outline the Lead Agency Review and Assistance program. The workshop will take place on February 12, 2016 from 8:30am- 12:00 pm at the RCRC Offices.

Some of the topics will include:

  • Timing Schedule and selection of Lead Agency Review
  • Review Procedures and Coordination
  • Mine Inspection Process Review
  • Development of Report Findings
  • Lead Agency Input for Report Findings

For details and registration please visit the Department of Conservation’s website.

Employee Relations
For more information, please contact Faith Conley at 916.650.8117, or Betsy Hammer at 916.650.8108.
CalPERS Requests Participation in Pension Prefunding Option Survey

CalPERS is considering what they describe as “a new program that would allow eligible California public agencies to set aside additional funds in a trust to prefund the employers’ annual required pension contributions to a defined benefit pension plan.” To that end, CalPERS is reaching out to public agencies to gauge the level of interest in a program like this, and to better understand how agencies currently approach these financial obligations. They survey is short and responses are anonymous.

The survey is available here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/G96S3G8. CSAC highly encourages participation to ensure that the new program will appropriately meet the needs of CalPERS counties.

Finance and Operations

For more information, please contact Dorothy Holzem at 916.650.8133, or Betsy Hammer at 916.650.8108.


Tax Amnesty for Marijuana Dispensaries – Comments Requested

A sales tax amnesty proposal has been introduced as Assembly Bill 567 (Gipson) to provide medical marijuana dispensaries a six month window to get current on sales tax payments or risk losing their dispensary license. The amnesty program would carry strict compliance requirements and threatens dispensaries with license revocation if they are eligible to participate but chose not to do so. Dispensaries eligible for the amnesty program would not be assessed a monetary penalty, which is sent to the state General Fund, if they pay their full back taxes plus interest owed in addition to following other requirements.

The State Board of Equalization estimates the State and local governments could recoup between $50 - $100 million in unpaid sales tax, with potentially $20 million or more being returned to counties pursuant to current allocations of state and local sales and use taxes. Counties may wish to consider if granting the BOE authority to revoke locally issued licenses for non-compliant dispensaries is an appropriate approach. Comments should be sent to Dorothy Holzem, CSAC Legislative Representative.

Property Tax Measure Stalls but Possible Threat Remains – Comments Requested

Senior homeowners seeking property tax exemptions when buying more expensive homes would have been helped by Senate Bill 378 (Beall) and companion measure Senate Constitutional Amendment 9 (Beall). The proposal would expand on the voter-approved Proposition 60 that allows homeowners age 55 and over (and permanently disabled individuals) gain a property tax exemption through a base year value transfer from their previous home to a new residence of equal or lesser value. Neither bill is still moving following CSAC lobbying efforts against the measures but the sponsors, the California Realtors Association, will pursue this topic through new legislation in 2016.

SB 378 stalled in Senate Appropriations Committee when it was given a $7 million dollar price tag by the Board of Equalization and Department of Finance estimated substantial new Proposition 98 obligations to cover that loss, totaling upwards of $350 million.

However, the sponsors refute the claim that counties, cities, special districts and schools would lose money. This is because of the reassessment of home values for all properties involved in the transaction. This may hold true in some circumstances, but counties with Proposition 90 ordinances (the ability to transfer base year values across county lines) should take a close look at potential fiscal impacts to their property tax revenues.

CSAC opposed the measure unless counties would be able to “opt-in” to the expanded program, much like the authority granted under Proposition 90. Each housing market and local property values are unique, and the Board of Supervisors should retain authority in budget decisions of this nature.

CSAC is seeking feedback on potential local fiscal impacts in light of real estate and property value trends in counties as California prepares for the next economic downturn. Comments should be sent to Dorothy Holzem, CSAC Legislative Representative.

Report on County Mandate Payment Deficiencies Available

The State Controller’s Office has prepared a report of current state mandate debt where counties sought reimbursement for services rendered. The report breaks down each mandate claim by county, as of December 31, 2015. The report is available here. Note: This report does not include interest payment calculations, which total an estimated $200 million statewide for all local agencies.

This debt is generally referred to as “post-2004” mandate debt. It follows the “pre-2004 mandate” debt that was fully repaid in the FY 2015-16 budget and provided counties with approximately $580 million for services rendered with interest.

For 2016, CSAC is focused on a two-pronged approach to address the current outstanding mandate debt that totals nearly $1.2 billion statewide for local agencies. First, CSAC will be working with the Administration to develop a pay down plan to make counties whole before the Brown Administration leaves office. In addition, CSAC will explore mandate reimbursement reform opportunities to help ensure on-time payments to local agencies for any new mandates and that the state avoids backlogs that could lead to dangerous liabilities.

New Year, New Mandate Reimbursements Explored

With an eye towards maximizing reimbursements for state-mandated services, the CSAC Mandate Service Committee met to discuss the Governor’s proposed budget and bills with potential mandate impacts. This Committee meets regularly to determine potential reimbursement opportunities and to navigate the CSM process and includes county, city, and special district representatives.

The Committee discussed the Governor’s budget proposal in the context of state mandates. The Committee had previously considered AB 953, 2015, Weber at its December meeting, and the Governor’s budget proposal includes $10 million to start paying for the initial costs that cities and counties will begin to immediately incur. Costs will likely increase significantly as the bill is fully implemented, but this may present an interesting strategy for state mandates: receive the money up front, rather than going through the lengthy and complicated reimbursement process.

The Committee also discussed several bills from the 2015 legislative session that may have potential mandate impacts: in the public safety arena, AB 1343, 2015, Thurmond and in the world of elections, AB 44, 2015, Mullin; AB 477, 2015, Mullin; AB 683, 2015, Low; AB 1020, 2015, Ridley-Thomas; and AB 1461, 2015, Gonzalez.

CSAC welcomes county officials from all departments to participate. Mandate Service Committee meetings are scheduled for the Thursday prior to the Commission on State Mandates hearings (schedule available here); attendees have the option of calling in to the meeting or attending in person at the CSAC offices. Interested parties should contact Betsy Hammer (bhammer@counties.org) to receive updates and join the committee for future meetings.

Health and Human Services
For more information, please contact Farrah McDaid Ting at 916.650.8110.
CSAC, County Affiliates to Present Whole Person Care Webinar

CSAC, CAPH, CBHDA, CHEAC, CWDA, LHPC, SEIU California and the Corporation for Supportive Housing will be hosting a webinaron February 25 to provide information to local officials interested in the Whole Person Care (WPC) Pilot opportunity presented in the Medi-Cal 2020 Waiver.

The webinar will provide an overview of the WPC Pilot elements and key dates and timelines. Counties, health plans, and providers are encouraged to have their implementation teams participate. More details will be released soon. If you have questions, please contact Kelly Brooks-Lindsey at (916) 272-0011.

Housing, Land Use and Transportation
For more information, please contact Kiana Valentine at 916.650.8185, or Chris Lee at 916.650.8180.

Strategic Growth Council to Hold Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Grant Program Workshops

This week the Strategic Growth Council (SGC) announced six workshops to be held across the state to assist applicants interested in applying for the 2015-16 Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities (AHSC) program. Interested participants can also sign up for consultation with SGC staff regarding the eligibility of a specific project that is ready to apply for funding and other questions.

The workshops will include a presentation regarding the AHSC Program Guidelines and requirements for Concept Applications, with a question and answer session after the presentation. The morning session will last from 9:00-11:30 am.

According to the SGC, staff will be available on the afternoon of each workshop for small group or one-on-one consultations on a first come, first served basis. The consultations will be 20 minutes in length and will be used to focus on projects that are ready to apply for the 2015-2016 AHSC Program, discuss project eligibility, and answer questions specific to the applicant's project. For consultation times, AHSC Program Staff will follow-up to confirm the exact time of the appointment. Applicants with projects in or benefitting Disadvantaged Communities (as defined by CalEnviroscreen 2.0) will be given priority for consultations. However, their goal is to provide consultations to all who request an appointment.

The final AHSC guidelines are available online here. Concept applications are due March 16 and applicants invited to submit a full application will be notified the week of April 20. Full applications will be due on June 20 and awards will be announced in September.

Workshop dates and locations are listed below:

FRESNO

Tuesday, February 2
City of Fresno
2600 Fresno Street
Fresno, CA 93721
Click here to register

SACRAMENTO
Wednesday, February 3
SACOG
1415 L Street #300
Sacramento, CA 95814
Click here to register

OAKLAND
Thursday, February 4
Elihu Harris State Building
1515 Clay Street, Room 2
Oakland, CA 94612
Click here to register

RIVERSIDE
Monday, February 8
City of Riverside
3900 Main Street
Riverside, CA 92501
Click here to register

LOS ANGELES
Tuesday, February 9
SCAG (w/ video-conferenced sites)
818 West 7th Street, 12th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Click here to register

SAN DIEGO
Wednesday, February 17
SANDAG 401 B Street, Suite 800
San Diego, CA 92101
Click here to register

Office of Planning and Research Offering CEQA Traffic Impacts Webinars

The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) announced that it will host two webinars to discuss its Revised Proposal on Updates to the CEQA Guidelines on Evaluating Transportation Impacts in CEQA (Implementing Senate Bill 743 (Steinberg, 2013)), released on January 20, 2016. OPR notes that registration for each webinar is limited to 500 participants. Each webinar will be recorded, and the same material will be presented in each. A recording of each webinar will be available for viewing on our website following the live presentation. Accordingly, OPR asks that participants register for only one webinar to maintain space for others who may be interested in attending:

February 1, 3-5 pm

February 9, 3-5 pm

Once you have registered for one webinar or the other, please ensure you have GoToWebinar installed on your computer before the webinar starts. Also, if you register and are unable to attend, please cancel your registration to make your space available for another attendee.

In each 2 hour webinar, OPR will:

  • Describe the context and need for the proposed changes
  • Describe the proposed changes to the CEQA Guidelines
  • Describe the contents of the draft Technical Advisory
  • Provide case study examples for various project types
  • Provide time for questions and answers

Additional information regarding the revised proposal is available on OPR’s website.