Legislative Advocacy

FY 2016-17 Council Goal: Legislative Advocacy

From the City Manager's budget message:

Increasing costs from regulation and new legislation affect the fiscal health of the City and reduce the level of funds available for other community priorities. In just a few years, the City’s visibility and influence within the region and on the state and federal level have increased, opening the door to greater engagement and dialogue with federal and state decision- makers on issues affecting the City’s fiscal health. One of the highest priority efforts in FY2016-17 will continue to be the reliability of Roseville’s water supply. To ensure Roseville’s water reliability, the focus remains on regulatory change and water infrastructure investment.

The City Council has set a legislative platform that focuses on preserving local control, providing financial flexibility, preventing unfunded mandates, and protecting the General Fund, Enterprise Fund and local sales tax and property tax revenues. Key issues in FY2016-17 include ensuring the tax-exempt status of municipal bonds remains in effect, monitoring new state-mandated requirements associated  with the City’s stormwater discharge permit requirements, and ensuring permitting processes at the state and federal level will not unnecessarily hinder the ability of development projects to gain approval.

To increase effectiveness of the City’s efforts in these  areas and others, the City works extensively with regional coalitions, forums, alliances, and established organizations such as Sacramento Area Council of Governments, the SacMetro Chamber of Commerce, the California Municipal Utilities Association and the Water Forum, along with ad hoc groups developed to address concerns with specific legislation. The City Council’s only standing committee, the Law & Regulation Committee, offers another way people can be informed about issues affecting the Roseville community from a state and federal level.

Key issues the City is working on this year include the following:

Cal Water Fix (Formerly Known as the Bay Delta Conservation Plan) —Cal Water Fix would have significant implications to the City’s water supply and could interfere with future residential and commercial development undermining the City’s ability to move forward with future land use decisions.

Water Public Goods Charge—The City has increased concerns regarding the legislature’s interest to impose a Water Public Goods Charge (SB 20) that would collect revenue from local ratepayers and monies collected would be allocated for statewide projects that have no direct benefit to Roseville’s ratepayers.

One-Size-Fits-All approach to State’s Emergency Drought Regulations—Though the state experienced a wetter winter in 2015-16, the fair application of conservation targets remains an important issue. The City advocates that state-mandated conservation targets should consider climate, land use, and other region-specific attributes; recognize previous water supply reliability and conservation investments by the region and local community; and account for potential relief from positive weather outcomes.

Cost-Effective Utilities—The ability to provide reliable and cost effective utilities to the residents and businesses of Roseville continues to be a central concern for the City as new state and federal mandates are proposed that would increase the cost of operating the utilities.
Federal and State Funding for Infrastructure and Transportation Projects—Maintaining or increasing funding for these types of projects and improvements is critical for the City’s ability to upgrade and maintain roadways and meet future infrastructure and transportation demands.

Cybersecurity—Future state and federal laws regarding cybersecurity will continue to have implications for the City and the community. Costs for implementing new cybersecurity requirements will add significant costs to the operation of the City’s information technology systems.

Changes to Tax-Exempt Status of Municipal Tax Bonds—The City has significant concerns regarding the effects of proposals to alter the tax treatment of municipal bonds, including proposals to cap the exclusion for such interest, will have on local governments. The impacts of such a change would have a damaging impact to Roseville’s budget, its utility customers, and the community at large.

Modifications to Government-Operated Mortgage Programs—The City will remain active in understanding the changes being considered at the federal level to modify government-operated mortgage programs, tax-deductions and to write new banking regulations regarding mortgage- related lending programs. These all have the potential to impact the fragile housing recovery throughout the region and the state.

Challenges with State and Federal Permitting Processes—The City has concerns with various permitting processes at both the state and federal level that impact the ability of development projects to gain approval within a reasonable amount of time.

Changing Economy—The City has a focused interest in being actively engaged in discussions regarding local tax systems, leakage from internet sales, and the fundamental shift from purchasing taxable commodities to purchasing non-taxable services and the impacts these have on the City’s ability to fund basic services.

Homelessness—The City will remain active in addressing the needs of the City’s homeless population with a primary focus of reducing the population of chronically homeless by providing solutions that address the fundamental causes of homelessness and by supporting solutions that provide permanent housing.