BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                             Senator Ricardo Lara, Chair
                            2015 - 2016  Regular  Session

          SB 272 (Hertzberg) - The California Public Records Act:  local  
          agencies:  inventory
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          |Version: April 6, 2015          |Policy Vote: GOV. & F. 7 - 0,   |
          |                                |          JUD. 7 - 0            |
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          |Urgency: No                     |Mandate: Yes                    |
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          |Hearing Date: May 4, 2015       |Consultant: Mark McKenzie       |
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          This bill does not meet the criteria for referral to the  
          Suspense File.

          Summary:  SB 272 would require a local agency to create a  
          catalog of "enterprise systems" utilized by the agency, make the  
          catalog available to the public upon request in the agency's  
          offices, and to post the catalog on the agency's website.

           Unknown, likely significant costs to local agencies to compile  
            information on enterprise systems that contain data collected  
            about the public, post the catalog on agency websites, and  


          SB 272 (Hertzberg)                                     Page 1 of  
            make it available to the public (Local funds).  These costs  
            are not anticipated to be reimbursable from the state General  
            Fund. See staff comments.

           Potential costs in the low tens of thousands to the Commission  
            on State Mandates (COSM).  To the extent an affected local  
            agency files a test claim for reimbursement of mandated costs,  
            Commission legal staff would prepare a full analysis of the  
            legal and factual issues raised for purposes of a  
            determination by the COSM.

          Background:  The California Public Records Act (CPRA) requires public  
          records to be open to inspection during office hours and gives  
          every person a right to inspect public records, with specific  
          exceptions.  The CRPA also specifies procedures for requesting  
          copies of public records.  State and local agencies are required  
          to make records available in any electronic format that holds  
          the information, if a person requests the records in an  
          electronic format, unless release of the record in that form  
          would jeopardize or compromise the security or integrity of the  
          original record or of any proprietary software in which it is  

          Existing law, the California Constitution, declares that the  
          people have the right of access to information concerning the  
          conduct of the people's business, and requires that the meetings  
          of public bodies and the writings of public officials be open to  
          public scrutiny.  The voters approved Proposition 42 in June of  
          2014, which amended the Constitution to require local agencies  
          to comply with the CPRA and the Ralph M. Brown Act, and with any  
          subsequent statutory enactment amending either act, enacting a  
          successor act, or amending any successor act that contains  
          findings demonstrating that the statutory enactment furthers the  
          purposes of these constitutional provisions.  Proposition 42  
          also amended the Constitutional requirements to disclaim state  
          reimbursement for local mandates contained within the scope of  
          the CPRA and Ralph M. Brown Act.

          Proposed Law:  
            SB 272 would require local agencies, in implementing the CPRA,  
          to create a catalog of enterprise systems, which are defined as  
          systems that are both a system of record that serves as an  


          SB 272 (Hertzberg)                                     Page 2 of  
          original source of data within an agency, and a  
          multi-departmental system that contains information collected  
          about the public.

          The bill requires that the catalog prepared by each local agency  
          must do the following:
                 List the enterprise systems utilized by the agency.
                 Disclose, for each enterprise system, all of the  
                  o         Current system vendor.
                  o         Current system product.
                  o         A brief statement of the system's purpose.
                  o         A general description of categories, modules,  
                    or layers of data.
                  o         The department that serves as the system's  
                    primary custodian.
                  o         How frequently system data is collected.
                  o         How frequently system data is updated. 
                 Be made publicly available in a specified manner.

          Legislation:  SB 573 (Pan), which was approved by the Senate  
          Governmental Operations Committee with amendments on April 28,  
          2015, would require the Governor to appoint a Chief Data Officer  
          and, among other things, would create the statewide "open data  
          portal" to provide public access to data sets from state  
          agencies, as specified.

          Comments:  Although state law already guarantees the public's  
          right to access electronic records that are not otherwise exempt  
          from disclosure, it can be difficult for members of the public  
          to know exactly what types of data local governments collect,  
          what formats the data are in, and where the data are stored.   
          This bill is intended to provide the public with information  
          regarding the systems used by local agencies to collect and  
          manage data and public records collected about the public.
          This bill is likely to impose significant costs in the aggregate  
          on over 4,000 local agencies (cities, counties, and special  
          districts) to compile and periodically update information on  


          SB 272 (Hertzberg)                                     Page 3 of  
          enterprise systems that contain data collected about the public,  
          post the catalog on agency websites, and make it available to  
          the public.  SB 272 contains legislative findings that the bill  
          furthers the purpose of Section 3 of Article I of the California  
          Constitution "[b]ecause increased information about what data is  
          collected by local agencies could be leveraged by the public to  
          more efficiently access and better use that information."  As a  
          result, SB 272 disclaims the state's responsibility for  
          reimbursing local governments' costs of complying with the  
          bill's requirements.

          Staff notes that a local agency may submit a test claim on any  
          statute that it alleges imposes a state-mandate, regardless of  
          legislative findings.   If one were submitted, Commission staff  
          would prepare a full analysis of the legal and factual issues  
          raised for determination by the Commission.  The courts have  
          found that a finding of the Legislature is not determinative of  
          the mandate issue, which must be determined by the Commission  
          reviewing the statute de novo.  Costs for COSM staff to prepare  
          a legal analysis would depend upon the issues raised by a  
          particular claim. 

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