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Updated HUTA Estimates Available on CaliforniaCityFinance.com

February 17, 2012
New Highway User Tax Account (HUTA) estimates for FY 2011-12 and FY 2012-13 (aka Motor Vehicle Fuel Tax, State Gas Tax) were recently updated and posted online. The estimates include projections for the longstanding Streets and Highways Code Sec 2105-2108 gas tax allocations as well as the new Streets and Highways Code Sec 2103 allocations which replace Proposition 42 state sales tax on gasoline allocations that were repealed in the 2010 gas tax swap.

Conference Committee on Public Employee Pensions to Hold Fourth Meeting on Feb. 28

February 17, 2012
The Conference Committee on Public Employee Pensions has scheduled a meeting on Feb. 28 to discuss "Examining the Impact of Increasing Normal Retirement Age." This will be the fourth meeting of the committee, which is co-chaired by Assembly Member Furutani (D-Long Beach) and Sen. Gloria Negrete McLeod (D-Chino).

League Forms New Task Force To Explore New Community and Economic Development Tools

February 17, 2012
Last week during its meeting, the League's board of directors approved the creation of a new task force charged with recommending to the board new community and economic development tools following the dissolution of redevelopment. In addition to recommending new tools, the task force will also provide guidance to the League's legislative team for broader policy discussions with the Legislature in the future. The task force will hold its first meeting on Wednesday, Feb. 22.

League Moves to Support Redesignation of Expiring Enterprise Zones

February 16, 2012
AB 484 (Alejo) will help ensure that businesses within an enterprise zone can continue to receive uninterrupted benefits until such time that the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) has completed a regulatory and administrative review of the program, issued a request for proposal, and issued conditional designation letters to the maximum number of enterprise zones within the state. Two enterprise zones face losing their designation this year without this legislation (Watsonville is set to expire in April and the Antelope Valley expired as of Jan. 31).

New Mayors and Council Members Academy, Legislative Reception and League Policy Committee Meetings to be Held Next Week

February 15, 2012
Next week hundreds of city officials will converge in Sacramento for the New Mayors and Council Members Academy on Jan. 18-20, the League Legislative Reception on Jan. 18, and the League's regularly scheduled Policy Committee meetings on Jan 19-20.

City Managers' Department Award Winners

February 10, 2012
Each year, the League of California Cities' City Managers' Department presents three prestigious awards honoring distinguished members of the department: the Wes Clure Award of Distinction, the John H. Nail Memorial Award and the Award for the Advance of Diverse Communities. This year the department is proud to announce the following winners.

OPR Schedules Workshops on CEQA Guidelines in February

February 10, 2012
In late January, the Governor's Office of Planning and Research (OPR) released for comment its draft CEQA guidelines for streamlining approval of infill projects. Please see the Jan. 27 CA Cities Advocate story "Governor's Office of Planning and Research Releases Draft Guidelines on Infill Development" for background . As part of its review, OPR has scheduled three workshops in Sacramento, Fresno and Los Angeles in February to discuss the proposed guidelines.

U.S. Department of Transportation Opens Fourth Round of TIGER Grant Program

February 10, 2012
Last week, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) published a notice of funding availability (NOFA) for the fourth round of TIGER grants. DOT has also released a technical supplement to Appendix A on Benefit Cost Analysis entitled "BCA Resource Guide."

Speaker Pérez Introduces Redevelopment Cleanup Bill AB 1585

February 8, 2012
Last Thursday, Speaker John Pérez (D-Los Angeles) introduced AB 1585 to clean up certain provisions of the redevelopment dissolution bill AB 1x 26. This bill includes an urgency clause and will require a two-thirds vote.

Which Path for Governor's State Agency Consolidation Plans: Budget Process or Reorganization Plan?

February 3, 2012
In Gov. Jerry Brown's proposed FY 2012-13 Budget he included a comprehensive proposal to reorganize state government, including the elimination of two state agencies, 39 state entities and nine programs. What remains unclear is how discussions on this component of the Governor's budget will ultimately proceed.

Governor Releases Legislative Language on his Pension Reform Plan

February 2, 2012
On Thursday, Gov. Jerry Brown released two documents containing language for his 12-point pension reform plan: Part 1 and Part 2. The Governor first released his plan in April 2011. He released a revised version of his plan in October 2011.

League Releases Results of 2012 Statewide Pension Survey

February 2, 2012
A remarkable 71 percent of cities that contract with CalPERS responded to the League's recent comprehensive pension survey. This is the second year in what has become an annual survey conducted by the League. Designed to help ascertain how cities are managing employee pensions, the survey focused on those cities that contract with CalPERS. Of California's 482 cities, the majority, 449 contract with CalPERS. The survey was sent to city managers in late December with all data collected by late January.

League Policy Committees Convene for First Meeting of 2012

February 1, 2012
Last Thursday and Friday, the League's eight standing policy committees met in Sacramento to discuss legislative issues and plan for the coming year.

Is Your City Missing Out on FREE MONEY?

February 1, 2012
In 2011, the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) opened up $25 million in noncompetitive grants, funded through Proposition 1C, the Housing and Emergency Shelter Trust Fund Act of 2006, for housing related parks programs. Unfortunately, HCD only awarded $8 million.

Redevelopment Agency Dissolution: Next Steps

February 1, 2012
Despite the best efforts of a broad coalition of other organizations and the League to protect local economies, redevelopment agencies across the state were dissolved under AB 1x 26, effective today, leaving many unanswered legal and technical questions.

Assembly Budget Committee Reviews Gov. Jerry Brown's FY 2012-13 Budget Proposal

January 31, 2012
Today the Assembly Budget Committee met to review Gov. Jerry Brown's FY 2012-13 budget. Following this hearing budget items will be assigned to budget subcommittees for more detailed review. The full Assembly analysis is available online.

FPPC to Hold Interested Persons Meeting on Conflict of Interest Regulations on Feb. 2

January 31, 2012
Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) is hosting an interested persons meeting on Thursday, Feb. 2 to solicit public comment on improvements to the conflict of interest regulations under the Political Reform Act.

Legislature Wraps up 2-Year Bills Today

January 31, 2012
oday was the deadline for each house to pass bills introduced in 2011 out of their house of origin. All two-year bills that did not pass out of their house of origin are now "dead."

League Sends Letter to Governor Urging Legislation to Address Problems With Implementation of AB 1 x 26

January 30, 2012
Redevelopment agencies throughout California are required to shut down on Wednesday, Feb. 1 with the Legislature having chosen not to take up and pass SB 659 (Padilla). With Wednesday's pending deadline, the California Redevelopment Association (CRA) and the League have been working to inform the Legislature and the Department of Finance of the serious problems in AB 1 x 26. The concern is that the defects in the legislation may be so serious that they could impede the ability of local agencies to effectively manage public funds during the dissolution process.

Senate Reviews Statewide Transportation Funding Needs

January 27, 2012
On Tuesday, the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee held an informational hearing on the 2011 Statewide Transportation System Needs Assessment. Commissioned by the California Transportation Commission (CTC), the assessment was a collaboration of many agencies and organizations that participate in transportation planning in California. The report includes the needs of all modes of transportation, including highways, local streets and roads, bridges, airports, seaports, railways, and public transit.
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