News from the Institute for Local Government
August 2021
A Message From ILG's CEO & Executive Director
Greetings from ILG!

Today's newsletter is coming to you from beautiful Monterey where Team ILG is excited to see so many special district leaders in person at the CSDA annual conference.

The return to in-person events has been quite a transition, but we're loving the opportunity to meet with our colleagues and partners safely face-to-face and learn about your resilience though the past year. Your stories of success and triumph are fueling us and inspiring us, so thank you!

This month's edition of the ILG newsletter will cover a wide range of topics as we transition into the conference and event season. Like so many local governments, the ILG team is navigating a hybrid environment with both virtual and in-person commitments this fall.

Our newly revamped public engagement training has been converted to a two-day virtual training but our numerous sessions at the Cal Cities annual conference are in-person. However, we will continue to host free virtual webinars and already have sessions scheduled on housing, workforce and sustainability in the coming weeks.

Local government leaders continue to find balance amidst the "new normal" of COVID and emergency response and we remain grateful to all the cities, counties and special districts that consistently engage with us through our training, education and capacity-building services. Our thoughts and prayers are with the many communities experiencing a surge in their COVID numbers or battling the devastating wildfires that are ravaging our state.

We honor your commitment and your resolve.

From all of us at ILG,

Erica L. Manuel
CEO & Executive Director
Board Member Spotlight: Neil McCormick
CEO, California Special Districts Association
The California Special Districts Association (CSDA) is one of ILG’s three affiliate associations. CSDA CEO Neil McCormick serves on ILG’s board and is also ILG’s Finance Chair.
There are over 2,500 special districts in California and CSDA promotes local governance and improved services through professional development, advocacy and other services for all types of independent special districts. 
CSDA’s premier gathering of special district leaders is the Annual Conference & Exhibitor Showcase, which is happening in Monterey this week. The event features inspiring keynote speakers, professional networking opportunities and more than 35 educational sessions. ILG has an informational booth in the exhibit hall and is hosting numerous breakout sessions during the four-day in-person event.
Throughout this year, CSDA has been focused on securing dedicated relief funding for special districts impacted by COVID-19. At the conference, the CSDA Team will be highlighting the extensive outreach and advocacy efforts put forth by CSDA and its members. Through developing a coalition of over 700 supporters, CSDA efforts successfully resulted in a dedicated $100 million relief funding allocation from the State specifically for independent special districts. Both ILG and CSDA will be working to inform and educate special district leaders about how and when to utilize those funds and apply them equitably.
Additional conference highlights and activities include fundraisers for scholarships, networking opportunities to share best practices and award presentations recognizing the great work of districts and individuals working at districts. We’re also excited to announce our first ever special district Beacon Award Winner at the CSDA conference as well.

Public Engagement Training for Local Government Leaders
ILG’s TIERS Workshop: Think – Initiate – Engage – Review – Shift

Virtual Training via Zoom
Thursday, September 9 & Friday, September 10, 2021
10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Now more than ever proactive, transparent dialogue, authentic collaboration between government and communities and equitable engagement is being championed across the country. 
ILG is excited to launch its re-designed TIERS Public Engagement Training in a virtual format. The TIERS training offers a step-by-step framework that helps California local government leaders master the public engagement process and build trust in their communities. TIERS will help you operationalize your outreach and engagement efforts in a more sustainable and collaborative way and provide you with resources and digital tools to authentically engage your community in a post-COVID world.
This comprehensive training is open to all local government leaders in California. The content is specially designed to apply to a variety of common local agency initiatives requiring public engagement, ranging from housing and climate change to budgeting and public safety. The training sessions will take place virtually over two days, with four hours of training on each day. 

Registration for this comprehensive training is just $600,
a cost savings of more than 15% from 2019. 
Apply Now! BOOST Program Helps Under-Resourced Communities Address Climate Change
Deadline to Apply: Friday, September 10
ILG is partnering with the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC) for a second round of the BOOST Program. The BOOST Program provides technical assistance to support under-resourced cities and towns in building capacity, optimizing existing resources, strengthening community partnerships and transforming their approach to address and fund climate activities.
SGC will select 5-7 disadvantaged and/or low-income communities to receive capacity building support in the form of trainings, partnership development, community engagement planning and implementation support, grant application assistance and communications support. The application is open to all California cities and towns that are designated as low income and/or disadvantaged communities, with priority given to both rural and non-rural communities with demonstrated staff capacity challenges
The application will be open until Friday, September 10, 2021. Finalists will be contacted for an interview before September 22, 2021. SGC aims to announce the selected communities on or before October 6, 2021.
Interested in Learning More?
SGC and the BOOST Program team hosted a webinar earlier this month to introduce the BOOST Program team, provide an overview of the program goals and timeline and share information about the services available to BOOST Program participants. Access the recording here.
You can also review these answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) here.
About the BOOST Program
Through the initial BOOST Pilot Program, ILG and SGC identified ten cities and two regions to develop partnerships with and provide tailored support with throughout the pilot time frame. Learn more about these communities and the successes and lessons learned from the BOOST Pilot Program here.
Climate Resilient Land Use & Housing Policies
Tackling California's Housing Crisis Webinar Series
Thursday, September 2, 2021
2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
Well-planned communities can not only create vibrant, healthy and walkable communities, but planning policies and practices can also create more resilient communities that are able to withstand the growing threats of climate change. Hear from ILG and your local government colleagues about best practices and lessons learned to address climate resilience through local land use and housing policies.

  • Erik de Kok, Deputy Director, Planning & Community Development, Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR)
  • James Gore, Supervisor, Sonoma County
  • Eric Nelson, Planning Commissioner, City of Dana Point

Moderated by Karalee Browne, Assistant Executive Director, Institute for Local Government
About the Tackling California’s Housing Crisis Series
California’s housing crisis is growing. To help city and county leaders better navigate complex housing issues in their communities, ILG is hosting a webinar series featuring subject matter experts on land use and housing, legal regulations and parameters and community engagement. This series will provide information and best practices, facilitate discussion and answer questions to help local governments better address housing issues in our communities.

Upcoming Sessions:
  • Housing Strategies to Tackle Homelessness: October 7
  • New Laws and New Money: TBD

The Tackling California's Housing Crisis Webinar Series is hosted in partnership with Placeworks and the Office of Planning and Research with funding from the California Department of Housing & Community Development.

New PublicCEO Report with Erica Manuel
ILG CEO & Executive Director Erica L. Manuel recently spoke with Tripepi Smith President Ryder Todd Smith about how to build public trust and advance resilient, sustainable communities for their new podcast series, the PublicCEO Report.
The PublicCEO Report is a video and podcast series hosted by PublicCEO owner and Tripepi Smith President Ryder Todd Smith. In each Report, Ryder sits down with a thought leader to talk policy, current events, personal experiences and challenges facing local government. The goal is for these unedited, unscripted conversations to inspire and inform listeners so they can be more effective change-makers at their agency.
San Diego Union-Tribune: Lemon Grove joins statewide program for sustainability
Focus on saving energy, greenhouse gas, health policies
Lemon Grove is joining more than 160 other California cities, counties and special districts in ILG’s Beacon Program. Beacon recognizes local efforts being made to implement new policies, practices and programs that improve energy efficiency and overall sustainability.
The Lemon Grove City Council recently approved a resolution acknowledging their longstanding commitment to advancing climate and resilience issues by participating in the Beacon program.
ILG is the non-profit training and education affiliate of Cal Cities, the California State Association of Counties and the California Special Districts Association.

Special Districts Recognized for Beacon Participation and Innovation at CSDA Annual Conference
Thursday, September 2, 2021
8:00 am - 10:00 am
Monterey Conference Center

ILG will present the first Beacon award to a special district this week! The Turlock Irrigation District has earned a Beacon Leadership and Innovation Award and will be recognized this Thursday, September 2 at the CSDA annual conference. ILG will also be honoring the two newest special districts to join the Beacon Program – the Citrus Heights Water District and the El Dorado County Air Quality Management District.

2021 Board Secretary/Clerk Conference
October 25-27, 2021
Premiere Training and Certificate Program for Board Secretaries and Clerks

Whether you are a new or an experienced board secretary/clerk, continuing education is essential to keeping current on the many aspects of your job. CSDA created this certificate program to expand educational opportunities for this important position in special districts and to provide an opportunity to recognize individuals who invest the time in becoming trained in the various components of the job. Register Here.
CSAC Challenge Awards

The California State Association of Counties (CSAC) invites all counties to enter their 2021 Challenge Awards competition. These unique awards recognize the innovative and creative spirit of California counties as they find new, effective and cost-saving ways to provide programs and services to their residents. This is a wonderful opportunity to spotlight your county’s best practices while recognizing staff for developing innovations in county government!

Entry Deadline: 11:59pm on Friday, September 10, 2021

Cal Cities 2021 Annual Conference & Expo
September 22-24, 2021
An In-Person Event!

Join Cal Cities and fellow city officials from throughout the state for their in-person annual conference in Sacramento. Learn, collaborate and celebrate with unparalleled educational and networking forums, including dynamic panel discussions, keynotes, breakout sessions and opportunities to connect directly with your peers. ILG will be hosting several educational sessions throughout the conference.
Understanding Public Service Ethics Laws and Principles (AB 1234)
Wednesday, September 22
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Equity & Public Engagement: Increasing Access and Building Trust
Wednesday, September 22
3:45 pm – 5:00 pm
Tackling the Housing Crisis
Thursday, September 23
8:30 am – 9:45 am
Bridging Divides
Thursday, September 23
4:15 pm – 5:30 pm
Creating a Culture of Civility & Purpose
Thursday, September 23
4:15 pm – 5:30 pm
Harassment Prevention Training for Supervisors and Officials (AB 1661)
Friday, September 24
8:45 am – 10:45 am
Attracting the Next Generation Workforce with Virtual Career Exploration
Friday, September 24
9:30 am – 10:45 am

Deadline Approaching: California Resilience Challenge 2021
The deadline to respond to the California Resilience Challenge 2021 Grant Program Request for Proposal is two weeks away. Eligible project proposals will be accepted through Monday, September 13, 2021. To learn more about the California Resilience Challenge, including what types of entities and projects qualify, please visit the links below.

Questions? Email me
CalHome Program Disaster Assistance
$41 Million Available for Counties and Tribal Entities Impacted by 
2017, 2018, and 2020 disasters
The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) announced the 2021 CalHome program Disaster Assistance Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for approximately $41 million to assist counties impacted by 2017, 2018, and 2020 disasters included in six Federal Disaster Declarations. This amount includes $27 million in previously unawarded funds from the November 1, 2019 (Round 2) NOFA and an additional $14 million in Proposition 1 funding.

This CalHome Disaster Assistance NOFA incorporates Assembly Bill 101, which allows CalHome to serve households that are victims of a disaster up to 120 percent of Area Median Income. The bill also allows CalHome to fund the construction, repair, reconstruction, or rehabilitation of the Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) or Junior Accessory Dwelling Units (JADUs). 

The application portal will accept applications starting 
Thursday, October 7, 2021

Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 28, 2021

About the CalHome Program
CalHome supports existing homeownership programs aimed at low and very low-income households, and moderate-income households which are impacted by disasters. The goal is to increase homeownership, encourage neighborhood revitalization and sustainable development, and maximize the use of existing housing stock. 

For more information, visit the CalHome webpage. Questions? Email
News From Our Partners
Article: ILG and Tripepi Smith Team Up on Public Engagement Webinar for MMANC

ILG Senior Program Manager Melissa Kuehne, joined Tripepi Smith Director Jon Barilone and Renne Public Law Group (RPLG) Of Counsel Jenica Maldonado for a panel discussion on public engagement as part of Municipal Management Association of Northern California’s (MMANC) ‘Webinar Wednesday’ series. Read more.
Article: $20 Million Unlocked for Expediting Solar Permitting

The Solar Automated Permit Processing application (SolarAPP+) was developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). It is a software application that streamlines permitting for new residential rooftop solar and storage systems. Last month, public officials and environmental organizations from across the nation gathered to kick off the official launch of SolarAPP+. Read more.
Help ILG Continue to Support Local Government

Help ILG continue to support California's cities, counties and special districts by making a donation today. Your tax-deductible contribution to the Institute for Local Government is an investment in helping educate, train and support our local public agencies. Every dollar you give will make a difference in your community.