January 13, 2021
Cal Cities News
Lawmakers returned to Sacramento Jan. 11 to kick off a new legislative session on the heels of the Governor’s $227.2 billion budget proposal for fiscal year 2021-22, released on Jan. 8, and Cal Cities is ramping up its advocacy efforts for the 2021 legislative session with policy committee meetings on Jan. 14 and Jan. 15. Read more

The League of California Cities issued a 2021-21 State Budget analysis and reaction from Executive Director and CEO Carolyn Coleman in a special edition newsletter late Friday Jan. 8, following Gov. Gavin Newsom’s unveiling of a record-breaking $227.2 billion budget proposal for the 2021-22 fiscal year. 

Gov. Gavin Newsom’s proposed 2021-22 State Budget includes a number of climate resiliency-related items, ranging from wildfire preparedness to electric vehicle deployment. However, unlike previous years, local governments are not receiving the same type of environmental and climate resiliency funding they have in the past. Read more

The California Department of Public Health announced on Jan. 12 that effective immediately, the Greater Sacramento region meets the criteria to exit the regional stay-at-home-order. On Jan. 8, Gov. Gavin Newsom released his proposed 2021-22 State Budget, which prioritizes funding to support COVID-19 response and recovery, but lacks significant fiscal support for cities. The proposed budget includes $370 million to expedite vaccine delivery, and a roughly $5 billion “early action” proposal, which includes $2.4 billion to send $600 payments to low-income families, $2 billion to reopen schools, and nearly $650 million in grants for businesses impacted by the pandemic. Read more
Education and Events

Wednesday, Jan. 20 at 1:30 p.m.Discover how partnerships between internet service providers and municipalities can bring resources to communities and increase connectivity, and learn best practices in the permitting process to complete projects that will increase economic success for residents and businesses in this League Partner webinar. Presenters: Charter Communications Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Torry Somers, City of Fullerton Deputy City Manager Antonia Castro-Graham, California Emerging Technology Fund President and CEO Sunne McPeak. Read more

New mayors and council members have a tremendous opportunity to learn the ropes of elected office and to connect with peers during four days of educational sessions at the virtual League of California Cities 2021 New Mayors and Council Members Academy, Jan. 21-22 and Jan. 28-29. Read more

Cal Cities has released new 2021 City Managers Conference schedule and session details! Join your fellow California city managers online, Feb. 1, 3, and 5 to learn about key issues facing cities, and foster connections with city managers and assistant managers from throughout the state. Read more

Did you know that over 95 percent of the League of California Cities’ educational programming comes directly from our open calls for proposals? Cal Cities is now seeking session proposals for the 2021 Planning Commissioners Academy. The call for proposals is an opportunity to share best practices and innovative approaches to issues city planning commissioners face. Submit proposals by Jan. 21. Read more
Many have called this year “unprecedented,” but even that does not seem to capture the unequaled disruption that 2020 wrought upon us all, the California State Legislature included. The normal legislative calendar was constricted and fierce debates took place over how to legislate during a pandemic. In the end, the number of bills sent to the Governor’s desk for his signature was a mere fraction of what the Legislature typically passes in a year. As the Legislature reconvenes for session in 2021, read Cal Cities’ recap of the 2020 Legislative year and the outlook for the new year. 
Opportunities for Cities

​Affordable housing properties have been acquired for middle-income residents in the cities of Carson and Anaheim from the issuance of $187.5 million in tax-exempt Essential Housing Revenue Bonds through the California Statewide Communities Development Authority (CSCDA). The Carson and Anaheim projects were the first two closings under the new CSCDA Workforce Housing Program. Read more

Your city still has time to highlight a street or road infrastructure project or program that has demonstrated a significant improvement in your community’s street system. The Save California Streets Coalition nomination period is open for its 2021 Outstanding Local Streets and Roads Awards Program, which highlights cities and counties that are employing projects, programs, practices, and innovative technologies and materials to achieve preservation, safety, and sustainability goals for the statewide local street and road system. Submit your nomination by Jan. 29. Read more

Cities are encouraged to apply for a Department of Housing and Community Development Local Early Action Planning grant. These flexible funds can be used for housing element updates, permit processing improvements, developing or improving accessory dwelling unit ordinances, rezoning efforts, or any project that accelerates housing production. For assistance with identifying projects, application review, or questions about the process, reach out to Institute for Local Government’s Karalee Browne or Melissa Kuehne. Apply today.
More News and Events
Wednesday, Jan. 20, 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. — This is a special opportunity for stakeholders to engage with CalPERS leaders in an open and less formal setting, and provide feedback on a variety of pension and health care topics. Stakeholders who represent CalPERS members, employers, and retirees are welcome to participate. The event will be held online via Zoom. Register now

Cal Cities’ Rural City Information Exchange is a valuable platform for rural cities to easily and effectively share ideas and best practices specifically geared to their communities. There are ample opportunities for rural cities to connect with and learn from each other, including a meeting at the Cal Cities Annual Conference & Expo, quarterly conference calls, a rural city listserv, webpage, and webinars. Read more and join today!  
Tuesday, Jan. 26 at 11 a.m. — U.S. Supreme Court amicus briefs can and do make a difference! The Justices regularly cite to them in opinions and ask about them at oral argument. In this State and Local Legal Center webinar, three former SCOTUS clerks will discuss how to write an effective U.S. Supreme Court amicus brief from a state and local government perspective. Presenters: John Neiman with Maynard Cooper, who clerked for Justice Kennedy and was Alabama’s Solicitor General; Elizabeth Prelogar with Cooley, who clerked for Justices Ginsburg and Kagan, and was an Assistant to the U.S. Solicitor General; and Usha Vance with Munger, Tolles & Olson, who clerked for Chief Justice Roberts. Register now

March 7-10 — Join more than 1,000 leaders from America’s cities, towns, and villages for an immersive program that provides local leaders educational opportunities through hands-on trainings and seminars focused on common local-level issues. At NLC’s Congressional City Conference you’ll learn how to drive federal policy, engage in dialogue with federal officials, and strengthen intergovernmental partnership with decision makers, while sharing ideas and building policy solutions for the future of your community.​ Register now
Cal Cities in the News
The League of California Cities opposes the agreements and is seeing the boom in e-commerce help some cities that have them, lobbyist Nicolas Romo said. "If any one city or group of cities focuses only on winning with this one economic development strategy, they may lose the broader picture of what sustainable economic development looks like,” Romo said.

“The state and federal governments have told cities to wait their turn for relief, and while others have received relief, cities have not received enough of the available dollars to cover the significant shortfalls they’re experiencing. In order to remain resilient throughout this pandemic and accelerate the strong recovery our state needs, direct state investment in our cities is crucial. With the vaccine, there’s a light at the end of tunnel, but we aren’t yet there, and cities could be distressed for many months to come, hampering the recovery we need,” said League of California Cities Executive Director and CEO Carolyn Coleman.