A New Facility Program has Emerged

By Eric Hall

News broke last week on a new facility program, clearly in response to the $9B measure on the ballot through the initiative process. A new program is being proposed that would abolish SB50, eliminate the SAB and create a new program administered by the California Department of Education (CDE). Total funding amounts and the amount of funds “metered out” during the proposed twice annual distribution of funds has not been announced. Reliable sources indicate that the funding is estimated to be $3 to $4B through a State wide bond measure targeted for the June, 2016 ballot.

The legislative vehicle for this hastily announced program is AB 531 which details a program that has not been debated publically or evaluated by the school facility community. The measure is being considered by the legislature this week in a very quick time frame that some would say is structured to limit public review and analysis so that the new program can be placed on the June 2016, State wide ballot.

We will learn more about this proposal this week, as the legislative committees are scheduled to take up the item. Our sources have provided some information on the proposal including the following features:

  • Abolish the SAB
  •  No apparent method to appeal or debate approvals
  •  Distribute of funding twice each year by CDE
  •  The CDE to establish a 5-year enrollment projection
  •  Provide priority funding based upon needs
  •  Allocate Funding based upon bonding capacity and assessed valuation
  •  Raises local bond capacity from 1.25 to 2% and from 2.5 to 4%
  • Provide funding in annual budget apportionments, subject to veto
  • Eliminate counting students in portables for eligibility
  • Raises value of plans requiring DSA approval to $100k
  • Funding conditional on an approved District Facility Master Plan
  • Requires 3% of District funds set aside for ongoing maintenance for 20 years after receipt
  • Allocates funding at 33%, 50% or 66% of project based upon net bonding capacity
  • Places significant risk on local Districts to qualify
  • Approvals is believed to favor urban districts

EH&A will continue to analysis the new program proposal. Please stay tuned for new and important information on this alternative program.


For more information on this proposal, please contact Eric Hall at (760)-602-9352or at eric@ehanda.com