MOORLACH UPDATE — Housing Bond Audit — October 5, 2018

This past Tuesday, I was back up at the Capitol to participate in the Joint Informational Hearing of the Senate Transportation & Housing and Governance & Finance Committees, as I sit on the latter. The title was “Housing for Working Families: How Do We Pay for It?” It was the first of two hearings. As this hearing dealt the housing shortage and financing, the market forces actually causing this crisis will be the topic of the next hearing to be held in November in the city of Long Beach. (If it were up to me, the regulatory dynamics unique to the California real estate market should have been addressed first.)

The first panel, addressing the topic “California’s affordable housing crisis by the numbers, recent actions to close the housing gap, and new ideas for future investments,” included Lisa Bates, Deputy Director of Financial Assistance, California Department of Housing and Community Development.

It gave me the opportunity to ask Ms. Bates about the recent State Auditor’s audit report on her department and its shortcomings (see the fact sheet at https://www.auditor.ca.gov/pdfs/factsheets/2018-037.pdf and full report at https://www.auditor.ca.gov/reports/2018-037/index.html). The Chair of the Transportation & Housing Committee, Senator Jim Beall, thanked me for the inquiry, as he too was concerned about the report.

A few thoughts. There is a $4 billion housing bond measure on the November ballot, Proposition 1, that this department would oversee (also see MOORLACH CAMPAIGN UPDATE — 2018 Ballot Measures — September 21, 2018). It would be more reassuring if the audit report praised Housing and Community Development. Consequently, voters are likely to approve another massive bond with minimal oversight.

Our State Auditor does great work. Regretfully, no one seems to care. Have you heard any reaction to the audit report from the Governor? From Alexis Podesta, the Governor’s Secretary at the California Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency? I didn’t hear a peep from her.

Now you can see why I authored SB 1297 this year to establish the office of a Chief Operating Officer (see https://moorlach.cssrc.us/content/senate-bill-1297-state-chief-operating-officer). No one seems to be running the show in Sacramento (also see MOORLACH UPDATE — SB 1297 – COO — April 19, 2018).

Fortunately, The Bond Buyer permitted me to vent a little on these two concerns in the piece below. Note: The reference at the conclusion of the piece should be to Proposition 63 (2004).

California is better at authorizing housing bonds than administering them

By Keeley Webster

https://www.bondbuyer.com/news/audit-problems-with-california-housing-bond-administration?brief=00000159-f607-d46a-ab79-fe27f2be0000

LOS ANGELES — California’s housing agency exercises inconsistent oversight of programs funded by state housing bonds.

That’s the state auditor’s conclusion in a report that was released a few weeks ahead of the November election, in which state voters will be asked to authorize $4 billion of new general obligation bonds for housing.

The Department of Housing and Community Development’s oversight of bond funds remains inconsistent, said California State Auditor Elaine Howle.

The audit of the Department of Housing and Community Development is State Auditor Elaine Howle’s fifth in a series tracking results from the Housing and Emergency Shelter Trust Fund Acts of 2002 and 2006.

The agency’s “oversight of housing bond funds remains inconsistent and HCD has failed to follow through on half of our recommendations from previous reports,” Howle wrote in a letter to state lawmakers attached to the 41-page report released in late September.

“We found problems related to how HCD is monitoring some bond programs, whether its housing bond database can perform key functions, and how it is ensuring that it does not exceed administrative spending limits,” Howle wrote.

“HCD generally provided adequate monitoring of its loan‑based programs by performing on‑site visits and reviewing required reports. However, it did not adequately monitor its grant‑based programs,” the audit report said. “As a result, it cannot be certain that award recipients for these programs used the funds to assist target populations with homeownership or home rehabilitation.”

State Sen. John Moorlach, a Costa Mesa Republican, called Howle “the real deal,” who has been willing to take on the same issues he has hammered as a senator – primarily what he sees as poorly run state agencies.

Though Howle has issued five reports questioning oversight of housing bond funds, nothing has changed, she wrote.

The accountability in Sacramento is negligible – and bonds continue to be approved by voters, Moorlach said.

“Howle writes these reports and no one gets fired, nothing gets modified and no one gets retrained,” he said.

Moorlach authored a failed bill asking that the state create a chief operating officer position to make sure criticisms raised in audits are addressed.

The state’s November bond measure comes on top of more than $10 billion in housing bond measures that have been approved by voters statewide and in individual cities and counties over the last two years.

San Jose, Santa Rosa and Santa Cruz in northern California are following the lead of other coastal cities that got voter approval for housing bond measures, and are placing measures on November’s ballot.

Issues raised in audits — particularly around the use of bond funds — don’t seem to affect the rate of voter approval on bond measures.

“I think 90% of the bond measures on the state ballot have been approved,” Moorlach said. “People don’t realize there is a cost. They don’t realize it is going to raise taxes. They don’t understand debt.”

Reports by Michael Coleman of the California League of Cities bear out Moorlach’s comments on approval rates for state bond measures. School district bond measures and city tax measures have an even higher approval rate.

The state’s $4 billion Proposition 1 would fund a variety of existing programs, including $1.5 billion to support apartments for low-income residents and $1 billion for loans to help veterans purchase farms and homes.

Many of the recent spate of city and county housing bond measures have been aimed at tackling homelessness.

It’s a case of trying to fix a symptom while not dealing with the underlying problem, said Christopher Thornberg, founding partner of Beacon Economics, LLC, an independent research and consulting firm.

While very visible, Thornberg said, the homeless population in California is a minuscule percentage of the overall population. In Los Angeles County, it’s 45,000 people in a county of 10 million.

“The idea that the housing shortage is best discussed in the context of homelessness is like saying an elephant is best discussed on the basis of its tail,” Thornberg said. “Politicians are making a big deal out of homelessness and it’s distracting from the real problem, which is the failure to clean up the zoning issues or allow a proper degree of development by failing to push back against the NIMBYs.”

“We view California’s housing shortage as an important, though difficult to quantify, long term headwind to the state’s economic growth prospects,” said Gabriel Petek, an S&P Global Ratings analyst.

There’s an economic cost: the price of housing, both rental and for-sale, has soared in the Bay Area, for example, as housing inventory failed to keep pace. Between 2011 and 2015, the Bay Area added over 500,000 jobs, but only 65,000 housing units, according to the Bay Area Council, a business group.

S&P Global Ratings has been including the state’s housing shortage in ratings reports for several years.

“We view California’s housing shortage as an important, though difficult to quantify, long-term headwind to the state’s economic growth prospects,” said Gabriel Petek, an S&P Global analyst.

“For example, notwithstanding that California boasts strong income and wealth indicators—per capital income is 116% of the nation for 2017—it’s also plagued by an above average poverty rate,” S&P wrote in an Aug. 23 report, when it affirmed California’s AA-minus GO bond rating. “After accounting for the cost of living, the state’s poverty measures look even worse. Nowhere is this more evident than in the state’s real estate market, where a chronic shortage of affordable housing, especially in its large metropolitan areas, undercuts the state’s business climate.”

The California League of Cities supports Proposition 1.

It also supports Proposition 2, the No Place Like Home measure, which would ratify a plan to allow the state to use an income tax surcharge to support mental health programs to back bonds to fund housing for homeless people with mental health problems.

In 2016, Brown signed legislation allowing up to $2 billion of bond proceeds to be backed with revenue from the so-called millionaire’s income tax imposed in 2004’s Proposition 62.

That plan has been tied up by a lawsuit contending Proposition 62 does not authorize the use of bonds. Proposition 2 would remove that ground for the suit.

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MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 8 — February 22, 2018

The Bond Buyer, the national daily for the municipal bond market, covers my three new pension reform bills and the one I’m coauthoring with Sen. Glazer in the first piece below.

The second piece provides Volume 8, with cities #150 to #101. This grouping covers about 5 percent of the state’s population, which means that three-quarters of the cities are in the bottom 382.

The six Orange County cities in this bracket are Stanton (#150), San Clemente (#142), Villa Park (#130) (which is in my Senatorial District), Yorba Linda (#129), Aliso Viejo (#107), and La Palma (#104).

One interesting city in this group is Loyalton (#124), the city that inspired SB 1032 (see MOORLACH UPDATE — CalPERS Exit Strategies — November 18, 2017).

The top 100 cities are next with Volumes 9 and 10.

For more on the first seven volumes and the four bills discussed in The Bond Buyer piece, go to:

MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 1 – February 7, 2018
MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 2 — February 8, 2018
MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 3 — February 10, 2018

MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 4 — February 12, 2018

MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 5 — February 14, 2018

MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 6 — February 16, 2018

MOORLACH UPDATE — City CAFR Rankings – Vol. 7 — February 20, 2018

P.S. Senate Floor session started at 9 a.m. this morning. The entire agenda was focused on what would be done as a result of the Senator Tony Mendoza sexual harassment investigation and the resulting report that was released this week. After two hours of closed door Caucus meetings by held both parties, Sen. Mendoza submitted his resignation. It took the Democrats more time to accept it. So, many of my Republican colleagues and myself tweeted out his letter. This moved things along. The Democrats returned to the Floor close to the noon hour, announced their acceptance of Sen. Mendoza’s letter, and promptly closed the Session so many of my colleagues could catch their flights.

State lawmakers maneuver as CalPERS brings more change

By Keeley Webster

https://www.bondbuyer.com/news/state-lawmakers-maneuver-as-calpers-brings-more-change

Two California state lawmakers introduced pension bills as its largest public pension fund decided to shorten its amortization period to 20 from 30 years for all investments gains and losses.

The new actuarial policy the California Public Employees’ Retirement System adopted last week would raise employer contributions starting in 2021.

It comes on top of a series of rate increases since 2012. The largest came last year when the pension fund’s earnings forecast was dropped to 7% from 7.5%, but it won’t be fully phased in until 2024.

California State Sen. John Moorlach, R-Costa Mesa, said he thinks the best approach this year is to tackle public pension issues incrementally.

CalPERS’ actions enhance its long-term sustainability, but are “likely to precipitate short-term pressure to some governmental budgets,” Fitch Ratings said in a Friday report.

“Potential cost pressures will vary by locality and may depend on legal decisions going forward, but local governments in California will be especially challenged given their limited ability to raise revenues and a history of judicial decisions protecting existing pension arrangements,” Fitch analysts wrote.

The League of California Cities did not take a position on the latest change, because it received a mixed reception from the cities it represents.

Cities citing extreme financial hardship raised concerns that reducing the amortization schedule will increase their employer contribution rates even beyond what they can afford, according to the League. But some cities support the change because they believe it is prudent to shore up the fund and pay down the unfunded accrued liability faster instead of pushing the financial burden to future employees, employers and taxpayers, the League said.

Sen. John Moorlach, R-Costa Mesa, introduced three pension reform bills, revising two he floated last year that died in committee ahead of the pension fund’s announcement. Moorlach’sGOP holds only 13 of the 40 state Senate seats.

Senate Bill 1031 would allow public employers to freeze cost of living adjustments for retirees if the pension fund isn’t 80% funded, while SB 1032 would make it easier for local governments to exit CalPERS without paying termination fees.

CalPERS’ unfunded liability is currently estimated at $140 billion and it only has about 68% of the money needed to fulfill its obligations.

A third bill, SB 1033, would shift the burden of increased pension costs to the last city that hired an employee. Moorlach said that often a small city will train a police officer, who is then hired by a larger city and given a significant raise. The smaller city is then responsible for paying higher pension costs for the years the officer worked there.

Moorlach said he thinks the best approach is to tackle the issues incrementally. If Gov. Jerry Brown, in his last year in office, decides to create a trailer budget bill proposing more wholesale changes, Moorlach said he would support such an effort.

“It depends on how aggressive he wants to get this year and whether he has the juice or he’s a lame duck,” Moorlach said. “He has already done an amicus brief saying the California Rule has to be removed.” Moorlach is referring to a case before the state Supreme Court challenging the legal assumption that it is impossible to reduce future benefits accruals for current state and local government employees.

Sen. Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, introduced SB 1149 last week, which would offer new employees the option of choosing a more portable 401(k)-style plan and opt out of CalPERS. Moorlachis a co-sponsor.

Under Glazer’s bill, new employees’ contributions would be fully matched by the state, at the same level the state now contributes to CalPERS.

The main difference is that workers who leave state employment would be able to take with them the entire balance in their retirement plan, including both the employee and employer contributions and investment gains.

Currently, public employees have to stay in the job for five years before they vest into CalPERS or the California State Teachers’ Retirement System. If they leave before vesting, they do not receive pensions and they are not able to keep money their employers pay into the pension funds on their behalf.

“This pension reform idea would be good for employees and provide a more stable fiscal foundation for the state,” said Glazer, adding it would be especially attractive to younger workers who do not intend to work for the government their entire lives.

The change would make the state’s pension obligations more predictable, because the state would no longer be at risk of an unfunded liability for employees, who choose the new option, according to the legislation.

Glazer’s proposal is modeled after a University of California option that has been offered to new employees since 2016. More than a third of eligible UCLA employees hired since 2016 have chosen the 401(k)-style plan over the traditional pension system, according to the university.

Rank City Population UNP UNP Per Year of
(Thousands) Capita CAFR
150 Stanton 39,611 $12,720 $321 2017
149 Farmersville 11,248 $3,672 $326 2016
148 Ferndale 1,445 $477 $330 2017
147 Rancho Cucamonga 177,324 $58,568 $330 2017
146 Twentynine Palms 26,919 $8,985 $334 2017
145 Duarte 22,033 $7,466 $339 2016
144 Eastvale 64,613 $21,957 $340 2017
143 Adelanto 34,273 $11,892 $347 2014
142 San Clemente 65,975 $23,089 $350 2017
141 Walnut 30,134 $10,661 $354 2017
140 Chino 88,026 $32,426 $368 2016
139 Pico Rivera 64,046 $23,639 $369 2016
138 Lakewood 79,272 $29,923 $377 2017
137 Plymouth 1,009 $382 $379 2016
136 Gonzales 8,549 $3,330 $390 2017
135 Wheatland 3,509 $1,369 $390 2016
134 Calabasas 24,202 $9,452 $391 2017
133 Diamond Bar 57,066 $22,743 $399 2016
132 Loma Linda 24,528 $10,216 $417 2016
131 La Puente 40,455 $16,918 $418 2017
130 Villa Park 5,944 $2,505 $421 2017
129 Yorba Linda 67,890 $28,716 $423 2016
128 Hesperia 94,133 $40,510 $430 2017
127 Coachella 45,551 $19,631 $431 2017
126 Saratoga 30,569 $13,439 $440 2017
125 Vista 101,797 $47,397 $466 2016
124 Loyalton 766 $360 $470 2016
123 Colfax 2,070 $981 $474 2016
122 Brentwood 61,055 $29,172 $478 2017
121 Lawndale 33,365 $16,090 $482 2016
120 Los Gatos 31,314 $15,134 $483 2017
119 Santa Clarita 216,350 $104,942 $485 2017
118 Hollister 36,677 $17,813 $486 2017
117 Oakley 41,199 $20,395 $495 2016
116 Dunsmuir 1,612 $804 $499 2015
115 Blue Lake 1,295 $656 $507 2016
114 Windsor 27,371 $13,936 $509 2016
113 Rio Dell 3,447 $1,760 $511 2016
112 Marina 21,528 $11,012 $512 2017
111 Fillmore 15,683 $8,060 $514 2017
110 Calistoga 5,238 $2,730 $521 2017
109 Highland 54,377 $28,350 $521 2017
108 Weed 2,805 $1,495 $533 2016
107 Aliso Viejo 50,312 $26,883 $534 2017
106 Rancho Cordova 73,872 $39,760 $538 2017
105 Palo Alto 68,691 $37,300 $543 2017
104 La Palma 15,984 $9,052 $566 2017
103 Orinda 18,935 $10,917 $577 2016
102 Shasta Lake 10,386 $6,099 $587 2017

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MOORLACH UPDATE — Rising Tide — October 5, 2017

The Bond Buyer, a highly respected national newspaper that issues its editions Monday through Friday, is The Wall Street Journal for those on the buy and sell sides of the municipal bond market. It also took notice of the recent CalPERS Finance and Administration Committee meeting (see MOORLACH UPDATE — Who Do You Answer To? — October 1, 2017,  MOORLACH UPDATE — Iceberg Dead Ahead — September 28, 2017MOORLACH UPDATE — What Pension Crisis? — September 27, 2017 , and MOORLACH UPDATE — OC’s Newest Landmark Plaque — September 20, 2017 ). In fact, the reporter used these links to prepare the first piece below. Thus, this critical concern of local government budgets being squeezed by pension costs for their retired public employees is receiving a national reach. And the CalPERS administration is laying the blame on those that approved the generous benefits, subtly acknowledging that plan sponsors are not crying wolf and that there truly is an iceberg dead ahead.

The second piece below is from the Voice of OC and provides a synopsis of my recent Inside OC interview . And the final photo in Politico was brought to my attention by David Vazquez, a former college classmate of my youngest son and now the Director of External Relations for Vanguard University in Costa Mesa. Thank you, David, for another great Rich Pedroncelli photograph catching me working on the Senate Floor.

In California, rising pension tide leaves services underwater

By Kyle Glazier

https://www.bondbuyer.com/news/in-california-higher-calpers-funding-requirements-leave-many-cities-struggling-to-fund-services

PHOENIX — Rising pension costs mean California cities are increasingly struggling to provide services and beginning to talk uncomfortably about insolvency, according to testimony from city officials and a new report.

Several city officials spoke during public California Public Employees’ Retirement System board meetings in September, offering support to requests from state Sen. John Moorlach, an Orange County Republican, that CalPERS analyze the potential effect of suspending automatic cost of living adjustments temporarily until the fund is stabilized, as well as the impact of moving all retirees into benefit tiers for new hires established by 2013 pension legislation.

The public officials urged the board to work with them to reduce pension costs, and painted a dire picture of city after city struggling to keep the lights on and meet other basic standards due to their pension contribution obligations.

“Corona is struggling with CalPERS rate increases,” said Kerry Eden, assistant city manager and administrative services director for the Riverside County city of 167,000. “Which is leading us to make some very difficult decisions.”

The rate increases have been amplified by CalPERS’ decision to begin reducing its discount rate, which is the pension fund’s assumed rate of return on its investments. The board voted in December to reduce that rate from 7.5% to 7% over a three year period, a rate of reduction some academics and pension hawks still said was insufficient.

It’s a zero-sum game; the reduced discount rate means that CalPERS must necessarily increase contributions from a combination of the state, employers, and plan participants in order to avoid slipping even further from its current status of 68% funding.

Corona has already had to make budget reductions to parks and recreation, public safety, and other departments, Eden said, and is actively negotiating with all its employee groups in an effort to offset rate increases. Since 2003, Corona’s annual CalPERS contribution has increased to $23.5 million from $5.5 million. The city now expects the contribution to rise by another $14 million or more over the next several years, she said.

“We are on a path to insolvency,” Eden said, projecting that Corona will exhaust its reserves by 2021.

Officials from other cities gave similar testimony, including Lodi and West Sacramento.

The board never ended up voting on Moorlach’s proposal, which Moorlach on his website blamed on the influence of union interests who testified against his request.

Lawyers have expressed doubt that the options Moorlach asked the board to analyze would be legal, as courts have held that the California Constitution generally prohibits modifying retirement benefits for existing employees. Moorlach wrote that he found the string of testimonies “amazing.”

“To have city managers state that they are facing Chapter 9 bankruptcy and even providing the precise upcoming year they may be filing is a massive disclosure,” he wrote.

An Oct. 2 study by Joe Nation of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research also reinforced the difficult choices local governments face.

The paper, “Pension Math: Public Pension Spending and Service Crowd Out in California, 2003-2030,” looks at a variety of local case studies and their pension situations under scenarios in which pension returns match their targeted rates and in which they come up 2% short. The paper looked at the local pensions administered by the localities, and also factored in debt service on any pension obligations bonds they have outstanding.

“Employer contributions are projected to rise an additional 76% on average from 2017-18 to 2029-30 in the baseline projection and 117%, i.e., more than double, in the alternative projection,” the paper said. “Employer pension contributions from 2002-03 to 2017-18 have increased at a much faster rate than operating expenditures. As noted, pension contributions increased an average of 400%; operating expenditures grew 46%. As a result, pension contributions now consume on average 11.4% of all operating expenditures, more than three times their 3.9% share in 2002-03.”

In case study after case study, Nation’s calculations showed costs expected to rise sharply in the next decade.

In Los Angeles County, for example, 2017-18 pension contributions of $1.5 billion reach $2.5 billion in the baseline projection, and $3.3 billion in the alternative projection where returns fall short of pension fund targets.

In Vallejo, which already filed for bankruptcy in 2008, contributions reach $24.7 million in 2017-18 , which is almost five times the 2003-04 amount. By 2029-30, Nation’s projections show the city’s contributions increasing to $52 million under the baseline projection and $60 million under the alternative projection.

“By 2029-30, pension contributions consume 23.7% of Vallejo’s operating expenditures under the baseline projection, and 27.3% under the alternative projection,” the paper said. That number was just 3.1% in 2003-04, and results in a likely “crowd out” of public services as the city struggles to stretch its resources.

Even under a scenario in which CalPERS expectations about future investment returns are met, the extra budget pressure from Vallejo’s pension contributions would require 24% reductions in police and fire expenditures or more than 8% in across-the-board budget cuts, the study said. If CalPERS investments fall short, those numbers rise to 33% and 12%, respectively.

CalPERS spokesperson Amy Morgan told The Bond Buyer that CalPERS leadership is focused on keeping CalPERS sustainable long-term, and that localities are primarily responsible for benefits.

“We are the administrator,” she said. “The cities and the employers control the benefits. The legislature sets the benefits.”

Nation’s study accounts for all policy changes currently announced by CalPERS and other funds, including CalPERS’ phased-in discount rate reduction.

“There is contentious debate about what is driving these cost increases—significant retroactive benefit increases, unrealistic assumptions about investment earnings, operational practices that mask or delay recognition of true system costs, poor governance, to name the most commonly cited,” wrote Nation, a former Democratic state Assembly member. “But there is agreement on one fact: public pension costs are making it harder to provide services that have traditionally been considered part of government’s core mission.”

OPINION

Reiff: Moorlach on Legislature, Trump Bashing, Immigration and ‘Who’s Your Daddy?’

By RICK REIFF

https://voiceofoc.org/2017/10/reiff-moorlach-on-legislature-trump-bashing-immigration-and-whos-your-daddy/

“It was fun to have a front-row seat,” State Senator John Moorlach says of the recently concluded session of the California legislature.

He’s not being complimentary.

Lawmakers passed hundreds of bills dealing with everything from road repairs and affordable housing to pollution controls and declaring California a sanctuary state.

But Moorlach, a former Orange County supervisor and now a member of the Republican minority in Sacramento, says the Democratic super-majority was obsessed with “bashing Trump” instead of finding constructive ways to work with the new presidential administration.

He said that was especially true on immigration – “the big issue.”

“The federal government has to find an appropriate solution to making it easier for those who are here to become citizens,” Moorlach said on the “Inside with Rick Reiff” public affairs program.

“We should be putting together a blue ribbon committee. We should be working with D.C. and saying, ‘California has the following solutions.’ We didn’t do that. (Senate President Pro Tem) Kevin De Leon never put together a team.”

Moorlach said California could assemble a bipartisan team of “incredible people” who could work with Washington on thorny immigration questions: “How do we make the transition? How do we be fair? How do we exercise the right amount of grace? Solutions are there … Let’s not just poke a stick in the eye of the president.”

While suggesting a path to citizenship for the undocumented, Moorlach, a native of Holland, also expressed reservations:

“I’m one of eight legal immigrants in the legislature and as a legal immigrant who went through the front door I’m offended that taxpayer funds are being used for those who didn’t go through the front door.”

Moorlach also discussed what has become his catchphrase in Sacramento – “Who’s your daddy?” – implying that Democrats take too many actions at the behest of public employee unions.

Moorlach said he thinks pressing that assertion has made some lawmakers more thoughtful about the bills they introduce and even stopped some legislation.

He noted that a bingo card drawn up by Democrats on the final night of the session included a square that read, “Moorlach says, ‘Who’s your daddy?’”

“So I know I’m having an impact,” he chuckled.

In a response to Moorlach that was read on the program, Bruce Blanning, executive director of Professional Engineers in California Government, portrayed Moorlach as an obstructionist who opposed the gas tax to fix roads and other key measures:

“The organizations representing California’s working men and women aren’t seeking to waste taxpayer money. The problem is people like John Moorlach,” Blanning said.

Moorlach also discussed efforts to address Orange County’s growing homeless problem. Moorlach is advocating for conversion of the state-run Fairview Developmental Center for the severely disabled in Costa Mesa, slated for closing by the end of 2021, into a facility that could house, evaluate, treat and assist the homeless:

“Let’s get these people back on their feet. That’s what they want to do.”

Asked where opposition to the idea might come from, Moorlach said, “You’ll probably see my neighbors go crazy. Because I live in Costa Mesa. I could throw a rock at that facility.”

The interview aired this past week (beginning Sept. 24) on PBS SoCal, KDOC and Cox. It can be viewed here.

Opinions expressed in editorials belong to the authors and not Voice of OC.

 

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/09/17/california-tears-into-trump-242801

Democratic State Sen. Mike McGuire (left) discusses legislation with Republican Sen. Joel Anderson on Sept. 6 in Sacramento, Calif. McGuire authored the bill that would require presidential candidates to disclose their tax returns. | Rich Pedroncelli/AP Photo

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