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H Budget & Spending

Budget & Spending Issues

Cost of bullet train increases $1 billion

May 20, 2014 J,

The estimated cost of building a key Central Valley segment of the California bullet train has increased by nearly $1 billion from the original estimate, based on figures in an environmental impact statement approved by the rail agency Wednesday. The estimate, prepared for the state by a team led by San Francisco-based engineering firm URS […]

California owes $340 Billion

May 20, 2014 J,

The state of California is $340.7 billion in debt and while it is on track to repay much of the sum, it’s not doing anything about unfunded liabilities for teacher pensions and state retiree health care, the Legislature’s budget analyst said Wednesday. Read more here from the Sacramento Bee. Like this post? Chip in $5 […]

Central Basin’s secret $2.7 million fund broke law

March 25, 2014 J,

The troubled Central Basin Municipal Water District violated the state’s open meeting laws when it created a $2.7-million fund in virtual secrecy, an investigation by the agency’s attorneys concluded. The fund, created for a groundwater storage project, was managed without public hearings or notifications, and records related to it were among those subpoenaed by federal […]

How to Become a (Public Pension) Millionaire!

March 25, 2014 J,

Detroit and San Bernardino and Stockton, California are in bankruptcy, and across the country the costs of maintaining pensions for city and state employees more than doubled to nearly $84 billion in 2011 from 2002. Yet the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (Afscme) declares that public pensions are “modest,” noting that its […]

Vallejo bankrupt again? ‘We are not going there’

March 25, 2014 J,

The Vallejo city council last week voted to close a $5.2 million gap in the current budget, showing no alarm that in a five-year forecast the gap reopens, mainly driven by rising pension costs. Moody’s, a Wall Street credit rating agency, said in a report last month that Vallejo and two California cities currently in […]