BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                        
                       SENATE LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE
                            Senator Dave Cox, Chair


          BILL NO:  AB 419                      HEARING:  6/9/10
          AUTHOR:  Caballero                    FISCAL:  No
          VERSION:  5/17/10                     CONSULTANT:  Detwiler
          
                           BOUNDARY CHANGE ELECTIONS

                           Background and Existing Law  

          As the Legislature's watchdog over local boundaries, local  
          agency formation commissions (LAFCOs) must follow detailed  
          procedures in the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Act when they  
          approve boundary changes.  Some boundary changes require  
          voter approval: city incorporations, district formations,  
          annexations and detachments with significant local protest,  
          and certain reorganizations.  When it approves a boundary  
          change that needs voter approval, the LAFCO must notify the  
          county board of supervisors or city council which then must  
          call the election, set the election date, designate  
          precincts and polling places, and direct the local election  
          official to run the election.

          LAFCO officials and local election officials want  
          legislators to clarify how the state's boundary laws and  
          election laws fit together.  LAFCO officials point out that  
          it's possible for a county board of supervisors or city  
          council to balk at calling a required election.  Local  
          election officials point out that the election laws already  
          cover some of the details contained in the boundary laws.


                                   Proposed Law  

          Assembly Bill 419 requires a local agency formation  
          commission (LAFCO) to also notify the local elections  
          official when it notifies a county board of supervisors or  
          city council regarding the need to hold a boundary change  
          election.  If the county supervisors or city council fails  
          to direct the elections official to conduct the election  
          within 45 days after receiving the notice, AB 419 requires  
          the elections official to place the item on the ballot at  
          the next established election date which is at least 88  
          days after the date of the LAFCO's notification to the  
          elections official.  The bill declares that this 45-day  
          requirement does not apply to applications filed with a  




          AB 419 -- 5/17/10 -- Page 2



          LAFCO before January 1, 2011.

          AB 419 deletes the requirement for a county board of  
          supervisors or city council to designate precincts and  
          polling places and instead requires them to direct the  
          elections official to carry out those duties.  The bill  
          also conforms the timing of boundary change elections to  
          the election dates provided in the Elections Code.


                                     Comment  

           Making a mesh of things  .  Both the Elections Code and the  
          boundary laws are complex statutes which require elections  
          officials and the LAFCOs to meticulously coordinate their  
          decisions.  AB 419 meshes these statutory requirements so  
          that elections officials can carry out their duties without  
          interference.  Further, the bill prospectively ensures that  
          the needed boundary elections will occur, even if local  
          elected officials balk.


                                 Assembly Actions  

          Assembly Local Government Committee:  5-0
          Assembly Floor:                    73-0


                         Support and Opposition  (6/3/10)

           Support  :  California Association of Local Agency Formation  
          Commissions, California Association of Clerks and Election  
          Officials, California Special Districts Association, East  
          Bay Regional Park District, San Diego LAFCO.

           Opposition  :  Unknown.