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  • Archive for March 24th, 2014

    Mar 24

    CALIFORNIA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CONFERENCE

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    Delivering quality resources to their community businesses and supporting the local economy are things that California’s economic developers do every day. The 34th CALED Annual Training Conference is an opportunity to celebrate their successes and learn from the best in the state about how you can take care of business!

    This year’s conference is focused on next practices and best practices in economic development. By attending, you will learn about:

    • Economic development: best and next practices

    • Professional development

    • Economic development financing: project and business finance

    California’s Economic Developers are Taking Care of Business!

    Click here for more information

    Mar 24

    GREEN CALIFORNIA SUMMIT & EXPOSITION

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    The 2014 Green California Summit & Expo taking place at the Sacramento Convention Center April 8-9.  The event is shaping up to be the biggest green government conference ever. Over 200 suppliers of green products and services and upwards of 6,000 attendees are expected. The Summit will feature keynote speakers, an educational program of full-day workshops, concurrent sessions, product showcases and networking opportunities. For information and to register, click here.

    The Green California Summit is the most important annual conference in California focused on the Golden State’s sustainability goals and the strategies, best practices and technologies that are helping state and local government achieve these goals.

    Whether setting aggressive renewable energy goals, enacting the nation’s first mandatory green building code, launching a pioneering effort to retrofit millions of  buildings constructed before the state had energy standards, or setting the goal of 1.5 million Zero Emission Vehicles on state roads, California sets the pace of green programs in the U.S.

    Mar 24

    2014 LEGISLATION – NEED YOUR HELP

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    In 2013, CBPA  followed more than 250 bills that had a potential impact on our industry.  Many of those bills did not make it through the process or were amended in a way that resolves our concerns. Now, the cycle starts over again. We are reading every bill and trying to identify issues that will impact our industry — however, we may not catch everything and need your help.

    As you go about your business, talking with colleagues at work lunches, your tax lawyers, reading newsletters from real estate  organizations you are involved with, or while talking to local policymakers, if you hear of any bill that you are concerned with, please let us know. Simply send a note to Matthew Hargrove with the bill number, or just the subject matter, and we research it. We would rather get 100 notes asking us to follow something important, than allow an item to slip through the cracks.

    An industry-wide meeting with representatives from all the major commercial real estate groups active in California will meet on April 3 to review all bills and set policy direction.  If you are interested in participating please let us know.

    Mar 24

    GO-BIZ ROLLS OUT TAX CREDIT PROGRAM

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    This week, the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) rolled out the California Competes Tax Credit which is a new tax credit for companies that want to expand or relocate to California. Businesses interested in taking advantage of the new program can apply on-line at www.calcompetes.ca.gov.

    Over the next two weeks, our staff will be spreading out across the state to host 14 workshops stretching from Redding to San Diego and two webinars.  Click here for a complete schedule of GO-Biz Workshops. Fact Sheets and FAQs Click here, and for a  VIDEO on How Businesses Can Apply Click here.

    Mar 24

    HENNING TO HELM EDD

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    Governor Brown has appointed Patrick Henning as director of the California Employment Development Department. Mr. Henning has been chief deputy appointments secretary in the Office of the Governor since 2011. He was a legislative advocate for the California State Council of Laborers from 2004 to 2011.

    We have a long, positive, history of working with Patrick Henning on a multitude of issues.  We know him to be a straight-shooter, hard-worker, extremely intelligent, and very pragmatic.  We applaud Governor Brown for this appointment and look forward to working with Mr. Henning on employment issues.  Click here to read the official announcement.

    Mar 24

    WHATS THE MOOD OF CALIFORNIANS ON PROP 13?

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    Mark Baldassare from the Public Policy Institute of California has penned a piece interpreting some recent poll numbers regarding proposals to “reform” Proposition 13.  Some may say the results are mixed, but a sober reading shows very strong signs that the electorate continues to support Prop 13’s protections for BOTH residential and commercial properties. To wit:

    “One Proposition 13 tweak that is a perennial favorite among tax reformers is lowering the two-thirds vote that is needed to pass local special taxes. Proponents argue that this change would allow local governments to more easily raise needed revenues for schools, public safety, transportation, and water projects.  However, the backers of this particular Proposition 13 reform would face substantial opposition among the electorate today. In our January PPIC Statewide Survey, just 44 percent of voters were in favor of lowering the vote threshold from two-thirds to 55 percent, while 51 percent were opposed. These findings are consistent with most of our polling over time.”

    Click here to read more about this poll.

    Mar 24

    UNDERSTANDING CALIFORNIA’S PROPERTY TAXES

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    Issues addressed in the bill above were highlighted in the Legislative Analyst’s Office report entitled “Understanding California’s Property Taxes,” which provides an excellent primer on the different types of commercial and residential taxation, as well as an explanation of how several landmark voter approved laws – including Proposition 13 and Proposition 8.

    Even if you think you know how Property Taxes in California work, reading this report is will be beneficial.  We expect this subject area to be a hot topic of conversation in the next Legislative Session…

    The LAO has even produced a video version of the report.  Click here for the video version. Click here for the full report.

    The report, “A Look at Voter-Approval Requirements for Local Taxes,” just released today goes delves further into the issue.

     

    Mar 24

    SUPPORT FOR PARCEL TAX SUNSHINE BILL

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    We have come out in strong support of AB 2109 (Daly; D-Anaheim) which would increase transparency and oversight of locally imposed parcel taxes. Our friends at CalTax note that during the past several decades, parcel taxes have become an increasingly popular option for local entities looking to raise revenue for various programs. Yet no statewide data exists pertaining to these taxes, nor is there state guidance or oversight of local agencies that impose and administer them. This has produced a disjointed parcel tax system that is plagued with inconsistencies.  AB 2109 requires the State Board of Equalization to annually submit to the governor a report on locally-imposed parcel taxes. This report will provide valuable information for state and local lawmakers in determining how many past parcel taxes have been levied, how much revenue has been generated by those taxes, and what programs have benefited from the revenue.

    Mar 24

    OPPOSE FOR SPLIT ROLL PARCEL TAX MEASURE

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    As noted last week, a major tax threat has been introduced in the form of a de facto split roll parcel tax.  According to a CalTax analysis, SB 1021 (Wolk; D-Davis) authorizes more than 1,000 California school districts to impose unlimited tax increases on select property owners by allowing the imposition of nonuniform parcel taxes. Under the bill, school districts could split parcel tax assessments within a district based on the square footage of a parcel, the square footage of improvements on a parcel, and/or the use of a parcel (but the same tax must be levied on all properties that have the same use).

    SB 1021 also allows school districts to impose a different tax rate on unimproved parcels; and to treat multiple parcels as one — for purposes of a parcel tax — where the parcels are contiguous, under common ownership, and constitute one economic unit (they must have “the same primary purpose and are not separate and distinct properties that may be independently developed and sold”).

    And most alarmingly, unlike most issues impact property taxes, due to the quirky fact that this law is not technically part of your Proposition 13 protections, this is a majority-vote bill.

    We are working to build the coalition of businesses opposing this measure.  Because it can pass on a party-line vote we need to show the depth and breadth of how a split-roll will impact your business.

    Mar 24

    AB 1103 BENCHMARKING

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    If you are not yet ready for the mandatory benchmarking regulations or are unsure how they apply to you, read further.  As of January 1, 2014, you are required to benchmark all nonresidential buildings of more than 10,000 square feet anytime they are sold, fully-leased, or re-financed.  Click here for infographic that will walk you through the basics.

    Throughout the end of last year we partnered with the Energy Commission to help owners/managers better understand the policy issues related to the implementation of the AB 1103 and want to make sure we continue to communicate with our members about their responsibilities under the law.  Click here to visit the CEC informational page that gives you all the details about how to comply.

    Mar 24

    AB 1103 BENCHMARKING – COMMENTS SOUGHT

    Posted by Crystal Whitfield | No Comments

    California’s Mandatory Benchmarking Law AB 1103, officially called the “Nonresidential Building Energy Use Disclosure Program,” has been in effect since January 1 of this year.  We would like to know how it is working for your company.  If you have gone through an AB 1103 triggered benchmarking and reporting please send us any brief comments about your experience – good or bad or just observational on the process – by emailing Matthew Hargrove.  We will compile your comments, remove any company specific identifiers, and share with the CA Energy Commission as part of our ongoing partnership with them to help implement this law as smoothly as possible.