Feb. 25, 2015

Issue #17

Editor's Note

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League Takes an Oppose Unless Amended Position on DOF Redevelopment Dissolution Budget Proposal

Cities Urged to Take Immediate Action

The League board of directors last week voted unanimously to oppose unless amended Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to make changes to the redevelopment dissolution process as part of the FY 2015-16 budget. The recently released language to the proposal is anticipated to be included in a budget trailer bill. The proposal contains a number of significantly harmful provisions to local agencies that would reverse recent court decisions regarding the redevelopment dissolution process, undo previous incentives and limit transparency, accountability and opportunities for local agencies to protect their legal rights. The League board action occurred in advance of several upcoming hearings on the matter.

Redevelopment, Action Item

Board of Equalization Acts to Reduce Variable Gas Tax Rate

Sen. Jim Beall Introduces Bill to Provide More Stability

The State Board of Equalization (BOE) yesterday approved a 6 cent per gallon decrease, from 18 cents to 12 cents, in the state variable tax on gasoline for FY 2015-16. This action will result in a dramatic decrease in the variable gas tax revenues received by cities. The decrease is more than the Department of Finance’s projected 5.5 cent reduction, but is lower than the BOE staff recommendation of a 7.5 cent reduction. The decrease will take effect July 1.

Revenue and Taxation, Transportation

Assembly Speaker Announces Democrats Affordable Housing Plan

Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) today announced the Assembly Democrat’s plan to introduce several legislative measures focused on creating more affordable housing in California. The Speaker was joined by California Treasurer John Chiang, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, as well as Assembly Members Ed Chau (D-Alhambra) Jimmy Gomez (D-Los Angeles) and David Chiu (D-San Francisco).

Housing, Affordable Housing, Legislation

Ask Your Congressional Representatives to Support MuniBonds

In anticipation of another effort this year to eliminate or modify the current tax-exemption for municipal bonds (MuniBonds), the National League of Cities is encouraging Congressional members to sign onto a bipartisan Dear Colleague letter being led by Reps. Randy Hultgren (IL-14) and C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (MD-02). The letter to House leadership urges support for the preservation of the tax exemption on municipal bond interest.

Federal, Action Item, Municipal Finance

The Mayors and Council Members Department Survey is Due March 4

The League’s Mayors and Council Members’ Department is conducting a brief online survey to assess a range of issues related to city elected officials to help the department best meet the needs of its members. The results will guide the department’s executive committee’s efforts to improve communication, increase participation and plan department-led educational programming.

Mayors and Council Members, Action Item
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