MOORLACH UPDATE — Recognizing Movement — June 7, 2019

The Indy of Laguna Beach has a Letter to the Editor that provides a great description of SB 584 (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Undergrounding In Paradise — May 28, 2019). It’s the first piece below.

There is only one small problem — SB 584 is in a legislatively induced coma in Senate Appropriations Committee. That decision is usually made by the chair of the committee and is often arbitrary, no matter how reasonable a possible legislative alternative may be.

While I’m disappointed that SB 584 has stalled for now in its current form, there is always a chance that some aspect of the bill, as it pertains to Rule 20A, may show up in another legislative proposal. Last year, portions of my SB 1463 ended up SB 901, providing more resources to wildfire resiliency using current funds without raising taxes (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Big Gas and Electric Costs — May 21, 2019).

I now serve on the Select Committee on Wildfires, which will be meeting on Monday to review the Commission on Catastrophic Wildfire Cost and Recovery’s report (it is also known as the SB 901 Commission). Perhaps funds from the Rule 20A credits can be considered in the set of broader recommendations? As Yogi Berra said, “it ain’t over till it’s over.”

I also have the opportunity to recognize a nonprofit every year and this year’s is Mind OC (Be Well). The Aliso Laguna News provides our press release in the second piece below. Last year’s recipient was Mercy House (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Gov. Brown’s Final Budget — June 15, 2018). In 2017, it was HomeAid (see MOORLACH UPDATE — First SB 2-Zone Victory in the OC — August 6, 2017). And in the first year of this new annual initiative, 2016, it was the Orange County Rescue Mission, where I was sworn in as Senator in March of 2015.

California Community College Annual CAFR Analysis

It has taken a long time, but the tardy Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports (CAFRs) are finally coming in. We just received the final Community College District CAFR this week. Consequently, we can do some analysis.

Last year I provided you with the districts’ unrestricted net positions and populations, which provided the per capita amounts for ranking purposes (see MOORLACH UPDATE — UC, CCC and CSU — May 11, 2018). If I provided this data, comparing 2018 to 2017, we would find that the total combined unrestricted net deficit of the 72 districts has grown by nearly $2.6 billion!

This year, I’m providing the per capita amounts for the fiscal years ended June 30, 2018 and June 30, 2017. The districts are ranked according to the 2018 per capita amounts.

For perspective, in the fifth column — I’ve provided the 2017 ranking and the sixth column provides the amount of movement, up or down. Customarily, changes in rankings should only be one to three positions. However, with the entire retiree medical liabilities now being required to be added to the audited financial statements for the first time, many districts have moved up or down in dramatic fashion.

There may be additional stories for the movement of each District, but the Other Post Employment Benefits (OPEBs) having to be reported on the financial statements by the Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB) this year has had a massive impact on transparency.

Each community college district board of trustees negotiates OPEBs with its bargaining units. Granting lifetime medical benefits must have seemed like an easy vote, as it does not cost much of anything in the first decade or two. But, with the passage of time there come more retired instructors and more actuarial liabilities. And, when the price tag morphs into significant debts, those who voted for the collective bargaining agreements are probably long gone and have left the fiscal vice grip to their successors.

Here are the 15 most improved districts:

Feather River (up 29 positions)

Solano (up 24)

Mendocino-Lake (up 16)

Barstow (up 16)

State Center (up 16)

Copper Mountain (up 15)

Long Beach (up 15)

Compton (up 13)

Palo Verde (up 12)

Sierra (up 12)

Antelope Valley (up 11)

Ohlone (up 11)

Southwestern (up 11)

Contra Costa (up 10)

MiraCosta (up 10)

Here are the 15 districts that dropped the furthest:

Ventura County (dropped 34)
West Kern (dropped 30)
Shasta-Tehama-Trinity (dropped 28)Yuba (dropped 25)
Merced (dropped 23)

Citrus (dropped 17)

Yosemite (dropped 17)

Cabrillo (dropped 16)

Los Angeles (dropped 15)

Palomar (dropped 12)

Butte-Glenn (dropped 11)

Coast (dropped 10)

Kern (dropped 9)

Peralta (dropped 9)

Rancho Santiago (dropped 8)

It’s interesting to note that even with all this movement, numbers 1 and 72 retained their positions.

Rank Name 6/30/2018 6/30/2017 Rank Chg
1 South Orange County $ 200 $ 141 1 0
2 San Bernardino $ 52 $ (73) 26 5
3 Los Rios $ (58) $ (72) 44 3
4 Mt. San Jacinto $ (74) $ (48) 21 -1
5 Desert $ (75) $ (72) 12 0
6 Chaffey $ (101) $ (92) 38 5
7 Sequoias $ (114) $ (56) 11 -3
8 Palo Verde $ (155) $ (163) 2 12
9 Barstow $ (155) $ (178) 6 16
10 Victor Valley $ (160) $ (109) 24 3
11 Kern $ (164) $ (41) 17 -9
12 Rio Hondo $ (172) $ (137) 32 4
13 West Valley-Mission $ (190) $ (88) 23 -3
14 Solano $ (191) $ (233) 41 24
15 Compton $ (191) $ (196) 31 13
16 Antelope Valley $ (203) $ (183) 37 11
17 Cerritos $ (204) $ (106) 27 -5
18 North Orange County $ (210) $ (166) 55 4
19 State Center $ (217) $ (220) 62 16
20 Ohlone $ (227) $ (201) 20 11
21 Gavilan $ (228) $ (199) 22 9
22 San Jose-Evergreen $ (228) $ (166) 51 1
23 Redwoods $ (235) $ (162) 14 -4
24 Riverside $ (241) $ (182) 58 2
25 Allan Hancock $ (249) $ (199) 29 4
26 Butte-Glenn $ (252) $ (120) 13 -11
27 MiraCosta $ (258) $ (227) 39 10
28 San Luis Obispo $ (262) $ (221) 33 8
29 Long Beach $ (272) $ (288) 50 15
30 Cabrillo $ (284) $ (119) 16 -16
31 Southwestern $ (284) $ (272) 49 11
32 Los Angeles $ (293) $ (137) 72 -15
33 Hartnell $ (297) $ (244) 35 6
34 Feather River $ (303) $ (471) 5 29
35 Citrus $ (321) $ (156) 18 -17
36 San Joaquin Delta $ (321) $ (208) 54 -3
37 Shasta-Tehama-Trinity $ (335) $ (86) 10 -28
38 Sierra $ (342) $ (331) 56 12
39 El Camino $ (343) $ (275) 53 4
40 Mendocino-Lake $ (347) $ (372) 15 16
41 Yosemite $ (361) $ (177) 43 -17
42 Ventura County $ (373) $ (80) 36 -34
43 Contra Costa $ (375) $ (354) 69 10
44 Palomar $ (392) $ (203) 57 -12
45 Copper Mountain $ (399) $ (407) 9 15
46 Yuba $ (405) $ (165) 28 -25
47 San Diego $ (408) $ (307) 68 0
48 Pasadena Area $ (408) $ (250) 42 -8
49 Monterey Peninsula $ (419) $ (332) 19 2
50 Mt. San Antonio $ (434) $ (357) 66 4
51 Lassen $ (435) $ (289) 4 -6
52 Grossmon-Cuyamaca $ (450) $ (305) 48 -6
53 Sonoma County $ (467) $ (322) 52 -5
54 West Hills $ (489) $ (383) 25 3
55 Santa Clarita $ (498) $ (418) 46 6
56 San Francisco $ (508) $ (420) 70 6
57 Merced $ (525) $ (215) 30 -23
58 Lake Tahoe $ (530) $ (502) 7 6
59 Coast $ (540) $ (330) 60 -10
60 Rancho Santiago $ (547) $ (337) 61 -8
61 Chabot-Las Positas $ (610) $ (368) 64 -6
62 Santa Barbara $ (639) $ (589) 40 6
63 Siskiyou $ (646) $ (397) 8 -4
64 Marin $ (669) $ (798) 59 7
65 Glendale $ (698) $ (582) 47 2
66 San Mateo $ (721) $ (755) 71 4
67 Peralta $ (764) $ (394) 65 -9
68 Napa Valley $ (897) $ (533) 34 -3
69 Foothill-DeAnza $ (980) $ (554) 63 -3
70 Imperial $ (1,076) $ (670) 45 -1
71 West Kern $ (1,194) $ (268) 3 -30
72 Santa Monica $ (4,185) $ (2,391) 67 0

Letter: A Win-Win

https://www.lagunabeachindy.com/letter-a-win-win/

Last Wednesday, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E) announced it would underground electric lines in areas damaged by the Paradise Camp Fire, at its own expense. This is great news, and praise should be given to PG&E for their leadership. Let’s hope its example and continued political pressure will encourage So Cal Edison and SDG&E to follow suit in Southern California high fire threat areas.

Praise also goes to Republican State Senator John Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa) who is working on Senate Bill 584 to promote undergrounding of utilities by expediting unused Rule 20A credits to assist in undergrounding in high fire threat areas, including Laguna Canyon Road. Rule 20A credits are a form of financial assistance in the form of credits to local governments to facilitate undergrounding projects.

Currently Laguna is allocated only limited Rule 20A credits and has to purchase additional credits from other cities who don’t need or use them. SB 584 would direct electrical corporations to reallocate Rule 20A credits to cities like Laguna and would require SDG&E and SCE to develop and administer programs to provide matching funds to local jurisdictions for undergrounding projects. This would give Laguna new tools to use more Rule 20A credits and get some matching funds for undergrounding.

Other tools in our toolbox include that our city should be actively encouraging local neighborhoods to form an assessment district to underground their own neighborhoods, like Bluebird Canyon, for both safety and their own aesthetics/view improvement, seeking matching funds from Cal-Trans and the County, federal and state grants, and setting aside funds from our $100 Million budget, to get the undergrounding job done, paying as we go.

Collectively, a great common-sense solution without raising taxing on residents. Let’s hope more common sense and fiscally responsible solutions like this are thoroughly explored before raising the fear flag and hitting the “must raise taxes” button. If passed, SB 584 would go into effect immediately. Let’s hope the powers that be in Sacramento get this bill passed ASAP. It’s a win-win and should be a no brainer.

Jennifer Zeiter, Laguna Beach

Moorlach Names Mind OC Nonprofit of the Year

https://www.alisolagunanews.com/moorlach-names-mind-oc-nonprofit-of-the-year/

State Senator John MW Moorlach presenting a  SenateResolution to Bill
Taoramina and Dr. Clayton Chau from Mind OC.

Senator John M. W. Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa) recognized Mind OC as the Nonprofit of the Year for the 37th Senate District with the California Association of Nonprofits. Moorlach was pleased to present Mind OC a Resolution on the Senate Floor for their outstanding record of community support.

“Mind OC is leading the effort to solve Orange County’s mental illness and homeless crisis,” Moorlach expressed. “Even before I began public service 25 years ago, I engaged in helping the mentally ill in our county and state, so Mind OC’s efforts are close to my heart. I am honored to recognize this incredible organization with this well-deserved award.”

Mind OC was created to support the advancement of Be Well Orange County, a partnership among public, private, academic, business, medical, and faith-based organizations. The Be Well charter created a community-wide, coordinated ecosystem to support mental health.

Mind OC’s coalition includes doctors, hospitals, service providers, advocacy groups, faith leaders, businesses, and local government. It works among the coalition to treat the whole person and reduce the stigma of mental illness.

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