September 5, 2013 
Legislative Updates: CaLBOC Co-Sponsored Bills Approved
SB-581 School bonds: bond accountability
1. Requires a school district governing board to provide the COC a response to any and all findings, recommendations, and concerns addressed in the constitutionally required annual, independent performance and financial audits under Proposition 39 within three months of receiving the audits.
2. Requires submission of a copy of the final Proposition 39 audits to the COC at the same time they are submitted to the school or community college district, but no later than March 31 of each year.

SB-584 School facilities:
financial & performance audits    

This bill requires the Controller, on or before January 1, 2015, and in consultation with the State Allocation Board, the Department of Finance, and the State Department of Education, to submit content to the Education Audits Appeal Panel to be included in the audit guide, Standards and Procedures for Audits of California K-12 Local Educational Agencies 2015-16, beginning in the 2015-16 fiscal year, that is related to specified financial and performance audits required for specified school facility projects.

Construction Bonds for Short Lived Technology 
LAUSD to equip every student with iPads   
August 27, 2013 | By Howard Blume| 
EXCERPT: ...Two local elementary schools became the first to roll out tablet computers Tuesday in a $1-billion effort to put iPads in the hands of every student in the Los Angeles Unified School District. ...
     ... L.A. schools Supt. John Deasy has pushed for the technology, which will cost about $1 billion - half of that for the Apple tablets and about half for other expenses, such as installing a wireless network on every campus. The vast majority of the cost will be covered by school construction bonds, a payment method that has sparked some concerns and legal and logistical hurdles. ... 

     ...The district is using school construction bonds, approved by Los Angeles voters, which didn't mention the purchase of iPads. This factor raised questions among members of the appointed Bond Oversight Committee.

     School bonds typically pay for construction. The permanent installation of a wireless network, for example, would certainly qualify. And computers installed in a lab conform to spending rules, in the view of many, since they aren't removed from school grounds.

     Tablets, however, are potentially a different matter because students will be taking them home. This raised a legal issue about spending bond money to pay for them.

     For that reason, district officials told the committee in January that the tablets wouldn't leave the schools during this first test phase. After the oversight committee narrowly endorsed the project, district officials changed their minds.

     Another issue was whether it's legal to buy tablets, with an estimated life of three to five years, with bonds that taxpayers would retire over 25 years. Early on, the district talked of using short-term bonds that would match the life of the tablets.

     But officials have since decided that regular, long-term bonds can be legally used, provided that some of the money goes to projects, such as buildings, with a longer lifespan, said John Walsh, L.A. Unified's director of finance policy. ...

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Video of LAUSD - 
Facilities: Authorize Contract with Apple:
School Bond Finance and Campaign Contributions  
Lockyer Urges Cleaning Up School Bond Deals   
August 7, 2013 | By James Nash|  
EXCERPT: California should limit negotiated bond sales by school districts and restrict underwriters and financial advisers' involvement in campaigns for voter approval of the offerings, according to state Treasurer Bill Lockyer.
     Lockyer advocates statewide rules covering the issues, rather than a local approach, spokesman Tom Dresslar said. This week, Los Angeles County Treasurer Mark Saladino said underwriters who donate to school-bond campaigns would be barred from doing business with the state's most-populous county. ...
     "The aroma emanating from the school-bond finance arena is not pleasant," Dresslar said in a statement. "The whole system is due for a deep cleaning."...
     "This is designed to curb pay-to-play," Byers said. "It's the taxpayers who have to foot the bill."...
     ...Lockyer, 72, supports statewide rules that also would apply to financial advisers and bond lawyers as well as underwriters, Dresslar said. The Democrat also would bar school districts from conducting negotiated sales involving issues that would raise less than a certain amount, Dresslar said.
     "You have district officials that have cozy relationships with finance professionals, who contribute to campaigns, then get no-bid contracts to manage noncompetitive bond sales," Dresslar said. "You have district officials and finance professionals making unrealistic promises to voters to get bond measures passed. Then when the promises can't be met, you have the same folks sticking future generations of taxpayers with unjustified, outrageous debt service tabs."...    
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In This Issue
Legislative Update: CaLBOC Co-Sponsored Bills Approved
LAUSD Construction Bonds for Short Lived Technology
School Bond Finance & Bond Campaigns
San Diego Grand Jury Transcripts
Archived Newsletters
Next CaLBOC  Board  Meeting:   
November 15, 2013
Sacramento Chamber of Commerce, 1 Capitol Mall. Conference call access
Information from the
May 10, 2013
CaLBOC Conference
Join Our Mailing List!
San Diego Grand Jury Transcripts
Sweetwater & Southwestern Districts
Whole set of South County transcripts
By Ricky Young
U-T Watchdog has been covering the release of grand jury transcripts in the South County corruption case brought by District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis involving more than 200 charges against 15 officials and contractors at two school districts and one community college.   
Mission Statement 

To promote school district accountability by improving the training and resources available to California's Proposition 39 School Bond Oversight Committees and educating the state legislature, local school boards and the public about the oversight and reporting powers these Citizens' Bond Oversight Committees (CBOCs) have, and to advocate on a state level, where appropriate, on issues of common concern to all CBOCs.

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