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Lawmakers Extend Deadline for Proposition 39 Energy Efficiency Funding and Create New Program

State lawmakers have extended the deadlines to apply for and encumber money dedicated to energy efficiency projects at schools and community colleges - the program known as Proposition 39 - and have created a new program to fund such projects indefinitely.

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California Travel Ban Does Not Apply to Local Agencies

A California law that bars state agencies from funding travel, and from requiring employees to travel, to states that permit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression - and Attorney General Xavier Becerra's recent expansion of the list of states covered by the ban - have raised questions regarding whether the law applies to cities, counties, school dis

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State's Top Court Rules that Contractors Can be Prosecuted for Conflict of Interest

The California Supreme Court has ruled that an independent contractor can be criminally liable for a conflict of interest under California Government Code section 1090, expanding the universe of penalties a contractor can face for violating the statute and reversing a prior appellate court ruling that exempted contractors from criminal liability for such conflicts.

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Public Agencies No Longer Required to Contract with DIR Registered Contractors for Small Projects

Senate Bill (SB) 96, passed this June as part of the California state budget, contains provisions designed to encourage more contractors to participate on small public works projects.

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Appellate Court Orders Publication of Lease-Leaseback Decision, Making it Binding Precedent

On May 31, 2017, the First District Court of Appeal ordered publication of its decision in California Taxpayers Action Network v. Taber Construction, Inc. et al.(2017) 12 Cal.App.5th 115 (Taber), which upholds the validity of a lease-leaseback arrangement. This reversed the court's initial decision not to publish the case.

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Public Entities Must Proceed with Caution When Preparing an Addendum to a Negative Declaration

A California appellate court has held that a public entity violated the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) by preparing an addendum to a mitigated negative declaration.

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Federal Court Upholds Texas School Board’s Practice of Student Invocations at School Board Meetings

A federal appeals court recently upheld a Texas school district's practice of permitting students to deliver a religious invocation at the beginning of governing board meetings.

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Bond Insurers on Credit Watch

On June 6, 2017, S&P Global Ratings (S&P) placed two of the three active municipal bond insurers, Build America Mutual Assurance Company (BAM) and National Public Finance Guarantee Corp. (NPFGC), on credit watch with negative implications.

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Appeals Court Says Bidding Not Required for Lease-Leaseback Contract

Another California appellate court has ruled that a lease-leaseback (LLB) contract made without competitive bidding is legally enforceable.

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