What the heck is a CSA?

County Service Areas (CSAs) are a somewhat-unknown yet robust form of California local government. A CSA can fund and provide a wide range of services and facilities, typically but not [...]

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New Year, New Rules for ADUs and DIFs

Late in 2019, the State legislature enacted a handful of new laws, with the goal of creating housing. Specifically, these changes to the State Accessory Dwelling Unit (“ADU”) and Junior Accessory [...]

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Homeless Problems

The Challenges of Funding Services There has been growing concern over the past few years about California’s mounting public safety and sanitation problems related to the homeless or unsheltered [...]

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Proposition 13, Again?

The property tax “revolt” began in California more than four decades ago, most notably with Proposition 13 which was approved by the voters in 1978. That initiative effectively rolled back [...]

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Public Engagement Predicaments

Most people understand the need for public engagement and support the idea, but often worry if they’re getting it right. Engaging communities in ongoing discussions and during the planning stages [...]

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Development Impact Fees and ADUs

In Spring 2019, the California Senate policy committees decided to put a pause on fee caps as proposed in Senate Bill (SB)13 and SB 4. These two bills would have capped fees on Accessory Dwelling [...]

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Is it Time to Update Your Fees?

Local agencies in California have the ability to charge a wide range of user and regulatory fees. Common examples of these include: Cities or fire districts have fire prevention programs and [...]

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Avoiding Billing System Debacles

Accuracy and Public Accountability Should Be Priorities The accuracy of customer bills sent out by municipal water and sewer agencies is reviewed far less than it probably should be. Particularly [...]

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