BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 247
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:  April 22, 2013

                     ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON REVENUE AND TAXATION
                                Raul Bocanegra, Chair

                    AB 247 (Wagner) - As Amended:  April 17, 2013
           
           Majority vote.  Fiscal committee.  
           
          SUBJECT  :  Personal income taxes:  voluntary contribution:   
          California Fund for Senior Citizens

           SUMMARY  :  Extends the sunset date for the California Fund for  
          Senior Citizens (Fund).     Specifically,  this bill  :

          1)Extends the sunset date for the Fund's statutory provisions  
            from January 1, 2015, to December 1, 2020.

          2)Allows the Fund to remain on the personal income tax (PIT)  
            return through the 2019 taxable year, provided the Fund  
            continues to meet its annual minimum contribution amount.  

           EXISTING LAW  :

          1)Allows taxpayers to designate a contribution to any of the 18  
            voluntary contribution funds (VCFs) on the 2012 PIT return.

          2)Provides a specific sunset date for each VCF, except for the  
            California Seniors Special Fund and the State Parks Protection  
            Fund.

          3)Provides that all money transferred to the Fund, upon  
            appropriation by the Legislature, shall be allocated to the:

             a)   Franchise Tax Board (FTB) and the State Controller for  
               reimbursement of all costs incurred in administering the  
               Fund; and, 

             b)   California Senior Legislature, for its ongoing  
               activities on behalf of older persons.  

           FISCAL EFFECT  :  The FTB estimates that this bill would reduce  
          General Fund revenues by $10,000 annually beginning in fiscal  
          year 2016-17.  









                                                                  AB 247
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           COMMENTS  :   

          1)The author has provided the following statement in support of  
            this bill:

               The reason for the bill is to encourage additional  
               contributions toward the California Fund for Senior  
               Citizens[,] which provides support to the California Senior  
               Legislature that advocate[s] and propose[s] laws impacting  
               senior citizens.  




          2)Proponents of this bill note the following:

               [AB 247] will [ensure] that [the California Senior  
               Legislature] can continue to advocate on behalf of seniors  
               in California by extending the provision of the Personal  
               Income Tax Law allowing taxpayers to continue contributing  
               amounts for the support of the California Fund for Senior  
               Citizens.  By extending the date to 2020, these  
               contributions fund the development of legislative proposals  
               seeking to improve services and programs addressing a  
               variety of issues such as affordable health care access,  
               elder abuse prevention, insurance consumer protection and  
               community-based long-term care services and supports. 

          3)Committee Staff Comments:

              a)   The California Senior Legislature  :  The Fund supports  
               the ongoing work of the California Senior Legislature.  The  
               California Senior Legislature notes that, since 1981, it  
               has labored to identify, develop, and support legislative  
               proposals that protect and enhance the quality of life of  
               California's seniors.

              b)   Background of the Fund  :  The FTB reports that the Fund  
               first appeared on the 1983 PIT return.  The minimum  
               contribution amount for each calendar year is $250,000,  
               which is not annually adjusted for inflation.  Since 2009,  
               the Fund has received the following total contributions:
             
           
                ----------------------------------------------------------- 








                                                                  AB 247
                                                                  Page  3

               |    2009     |     2010      |     2011      |    2012     |
               |-------------+---------------+---------------+-------------|
               |  $330,646   |   $296,144    |   $308,763    |$272,742     |
                ----------------------------------------------------------- 

              c)   So many causes, so little space  :  There are countless  
               worthy causes that would benefit from the inclusion of a  
               new VCF on the state's PIT returns.  At the same time,  
               space on the return is limited.  Thus, it could be argued  
               that the current system for adding and retaining VCFs is  
               subjective and essentially rewards causes that can convince  
               the Legislature to include or retain their fund on the  
               form.

              d)   Current VCF bills  :  The following related bills have  
               been introduced in the current legislative session:

               i)     AB 394 (Yamada) extends the repeal date of the  
                 California Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders  
                 Research Fund from January 1, 2015, to December 1, 2020.

               ii)    AB 511 (Pan) establishes the American Red Cross,  
                 California Chapters Fund.

               iii)   AB 754 (Muratsuchi) establishes a new VCF for the  
                 California Beach and Coastal Enhancement Account.     

               iv)    AB 1286 (Skinner) specifies that, for calendar years  
                 2014 to 2017, the California Breast Cancer Research  
                 Fund's minimum contribution amount shall equal the  
                 minimum contribution amount for the 2013 calendar year.  

               v)     SB 571 (Price) establishes the Arts for Kids Fund.  

           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :   

           Support 
           
          Alzheimer's Association
          California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform
          California Assisted Living Association
          California Association for Health Services at Home
          California Senior Legislature
          Contra Costa County Advisory Council on Aging
          County Welfare Directors Association of California








                                                                  AB 247
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          Older Women's League of California
          1 individual

           Opposition 
           
          None on file
           
          Analysis Prepared by  :  M. David Ruff / REV. & TAX. / (916)  
          319-2098