Public safety realignment substantially reduced the state’s prison population. Between 2011 and 2012, property crime increased in California as a result of this policy change. Auto theft increased most dramatically, by 14.8 percent—or about 24,000 per year. By contrast, violent crime rates did not appear to be affected.
November’s tax receipts could look somewhat disappointing at face value, but delays in collections and recording appear to have accounted for much of the shortfall. Relative to projections contained in the 2013-14 Budget Act, total November revenues fell $376 million, or 5.9%, shy of estimates. Those figures do not include approximately $440 million in late November sales tax deposits which, because of the late Thanksgiving holiday, were recorded to the State’s books in December.
To ensure stability and expand opportunity in California, Speaker John A. Pérez (D-Los Angeles) and Assembly Budget Committee Chair Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) released the 2014 Blueprint for a Responsible Budget today, highlighting priorities Assembly Democrats will focus on in upcoming budget deliberations.
The California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) told Gov. Jerry Brown and legislators months ago that it needs another $4.5 billion a year from someone – the state, school districts or teachers – to avoid insolvency in future years. And the CalSTRS deficit is growing by millions of dollars each day.
California Treasurer Bill Lockyer is warning that the state teacher retirement system is rapidly running out of money.
Property theft in California increased in the first year of correctional realignment, according to a new report by the nonpartisan Public Policy Institute of California highlighting the policy’s possible effect on future crime rates.
A $25-billion proposal to re-engineer the hub of California’s sprawling water system may not yield all the water that San Joaquin Valley farmers and Southland cities want, leaving open the question of whether the massive project will be built.
A new future for the troubled Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta was laid out for public review Monday in 34,000 sprawling pages of analysis associated with two giant water-diversion tunnels proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown. The question now for the public and policy makers: Is this the future they want?
A contentious project to divert water supplied to Southern California past an ecologically sensitive river delta moved a step closer to fruition Monday, as state and federal officials unveiled a draft final environmental analysis.
The 19th annual edition of the LAO’s Fiscal Outlook–a forecast of California’s state General Fund revenues and expenditures over the next six years–reflects continued improvement in the state’s finances. A restrained budget for 2013-14, combined with our updated forecast of increased state revenues, has produced a promising budget situation for 2014-15. Our forecast indicates that, absent any changes to current laws and policies, the state would end 2014-15 with a multibillion-dollar reserve. Continued caution is needed, however, given that these surpluses are dependent on a number of assumptions that may not come to pass. For example, as we discuss in this report, an economic downturn within the next few years could quickly result in a return to operating deficits. In this report, we outline a strategic approach for allocating potential surpluses that prepares for the next economic downturn while paying for past commitments, maintaining existing programs, and making new budgetary commitments incrementally to address other public priorities.
California’s finances are bouncing back after a lengthy recession, and tax revenues are primed for strong growth over the next several years, according to a report issued Wednesday by the Legislature’s budget analyst.
California’s budget is on track for multibillion dollar surpluses in the coming years, the Legislature’s nonpartisan fiscal analyst said Wednesday in an upbeat assessment of the state’s fiscal picture.
In its annual water allocation estimate, usually issued around Dec. 1, the department projects that it will be able to fill only 5 percent of the water requests it has received from the 29 water agencies it contracts with – agencies that serve about two-thirds of California’s population. Only once before – in 2010 – did the department issue a similarly low estimate of available water.
It’s still just a speck on the horizon, but getting closer by the second: the point at which California’s oldest pension fund — and the only real retirement security for more than 800,000 educators — will, without a major infusion of cash, be flat broke.
Calpers, as the fund is known, said it paid 130 employees and executives $7.7 million in bonuses last year, more than twice the $3.6 million in the previous year. Chief Investment Officer Joe Dear got $321,750 in addition to his half-million dollar base pay. Three investment officers were paid more than $200,000 each, according to data provided by the fund.