VoSD Silence of the Thumbs
...Yet in a growing number of cities, DeMaio wouldn't be allowed to use his personal Palm Pre with slide-out keyboard, or any other electronic device, personal or otherwise, to send or receive city-related messages during meetings. That's because legal and transparency questions have governments at various levels wringing their hands, and, in some cases, retreating...
This is the sort of thing a sunshine ordinance can clarify.
Why Bell Happened and How to Prevent Repeats
OPEN GOVERNMENT -- The explosive self-dealing scandal that has in a matter of weeks blown away the city of Bell's senior administrative tier was probably inevitable, given the gaps in the Brown Act and the newspaper publishing tradition that once provided small towns with a watchful eye and a to be reckoned with, notes a commentary in Voice of OC.
Another local city sees its staff make concessions on staff compensation (Read SolBeachSB).
Encinitas city staff were given a 15% raise over 4 years.
ENCINITAS: School district will ask voters about renovation
Voters in the Encinitas Union School District will decide in November whether to allow the district to borrow as much as $44.2 million for renovation work and technological upgrades at its nine campuses.
Trustees voted 4-1 Tuesday to put the bond measure on the ballot this fall, saying it was vital for the district to have modern classrooms.
SCV Poseidon Desal Deal? Govt. May Rescue Junk Bond Project
Due to soaring cost estimates and lack of private financing for a proposed 50-million-gallon per day Carlsbad desalination project, a government water agency may negotiate a takeover deal with the project’s developer, Poseidon Resources, Inc...
But far from instilling caution in public water boards or city councils, Poseidon’s risky business seems to have inspired them to bend over backwards—at taxpayers’ expense—to help keep the company’s dreams alive...
See Also: NCT Water Authority to Explore Agreement
SacBEE Pension Fund Bombshell
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board has dropped a bombshell
with preliminary new rules that, if adopted, would force governments
to increase projections of pension liabilities by using tighter
"discount rates" – effectively, lower assumptions of pension fund
The huge California Public Employees' Retirement System, the
California State Teachers' Retirement System, the University of
California Retirement System and dozens of locally managed pension
funds would no longer be able to minimize unfunded liabilities by
adopting rosy scenarios of future earnings.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, through his financial aide, David Crane,
has waged a war of words with the union-controlled Cal- PERS, alleging
that the nation's largest public pension fund has been lowballing its
Schwarzenegger has said he won't sign a new state budget without
pension reforms of some kind. A few days ago, the administration
reached agreement with four state worker unions on some mild pension
changes mostly affecting new workers...
The governor and Crane have touted a Stanford University study
suggesting that, in calculating future pension obligations, the three
state retirement systems stop using a discount rate that's the same as
their assumed rates of annual earnings return, 7.5 percent or higher.