California Municipal Law Blog

State Supreme Court Orders Taxpayer Protection Act Off the Ballot

by on June 20, 2024

posted in Elections, Initiatives,

Cities, counties, and special districts can breathe a sigh of relief.  Today, the California Supreme Court ordered the “Taxpayer Protection and Government Accountability Act,” or “TPA,” be left off the November ballot.  The Court’s decision was unanimous. The legal issue decided was a technical—though important—one.  The Court determined the TPA was a “revision” rather than “amendment” to the State Constitution.  This determination, the Court reasoned, required the extraordinary relief of keeping the TPA off the ballot. Amendment or Revision? Constitutional ... Continue Reading

tags: California Supreme Court, Consitutional Convention, Initiative, November 2024 Election, Taxpayer Protection Act, TPA,

Governor Issues New Executive Order Suspending Voting Rights Act Deadlines

by on April 10, 2020

posted in Elections, Meetings,

Yesterday, Governor Newsom amended his previous executive order regarding deadlines under the California Voting Rights Act (“CVRA”).  His new order clarifies that the suspension of CVRA deadlines applies to both of the “safe harbor” periods provided in Elections Code section 10010.  It is clear now the suspension applies to the first, 45-day period local agencies have to consider adoption of a resolution expressing intention to convert to district elections, as well as the second, 90-day period for the public hearings to create districts.  ... Continue Reading

tags: At Large Elections, By District Elections, California Voting Rights Act, Executive Order,

Governor Suspends Deadlines for Converting to District Elections

by on March 21, 2020

posted in Elections,

On March 20, the Governor issued another in a series of executive orders related to the COVID-19 public-health emergency that, among other things, suspended the deadlines related to the process of converting from at-large to district elections.  Specifically, the order suspends the deadlines provided in Elections Code section 10010 related to voluntary conversions undertaken in response to claimed violations of the California Voting Rights Act (“CVRA”).  Effectively, this means that cities and special districts that have received demands to convert to district elections, and cities and districts ... Continue Reading

tags: At Large Elections, California Voting Rights Act, COVID-19, District Elections, Executive Order,

Campaign Finance Reform is Coming to City Council Campaigns

by on December 22, 2019

posted in Elections, Legislative Updates,

AB 571 provides statewide campaign contribution limits applicable to City Council campaigns (beginning in 2021) unless superseded by a local campaign limit ordinance or resolution. The City  does not have campaign contribution or funding limits at this time.    Therefore, absent a local resolution or ordinance, the provisions of AB 571 that amend the Political Reform Act will impose a basic limit of $3000  per election per contributor as of January 1, 2021, and impose other restrictions. This limit is adjusted annual by the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) according to the consumer ... Continue Reading

tags: Campaign Contributions, Campaign Finance Reform, Campaign Loans, Contribution Limits,

New Legislation Allows Special Districts to Navigate Voting Rights Act Liability

by on May 6, 2017

posted in Elections,

Legislation that took effect in January allows special districts to switch from “at large” to “by district” elections for their governing boards.  Our memorandum describing this new legislation, and how it can help districts avoid Voting Rights Act liability, is linked here:  Memorandum  ... Continue Reading

tags: At Large Elections, By District Elections, California Voting Rights Act,