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SCSQUARED halfBy Eric Heinz 

San Clemente representative Assemblyman Bill Brough’s bill to amend the code relating to Community Financed Districts, a controversial bond method of paying for public infrastructure and buildings, was referred to the Assembly Local Government Committee on Feb. 4. CFDs have been criticized by groups such as the Talega Residents for Fair Taxation, which has been paying off a Mello-Roos tax for the Capistrano Unified School District that’s been around since the 1990s.

The residents say they have been overtaxed by the CFD in the past and want to close out the bond as soon as possible. The Talega organization recently sent a letter of support for the bill to Brough’s office.

Under the requirements of the bill, AB 1666, the financial reports would have to include information regarding the original maximum bond amount, the amount collected annually, amount expensed annually, specific projects to be constructed and funded and the amount committed from the CFD, specified list of projects that may be funded by the CFD, amount collected in excess of what is needed to pay the bond payments, bad debt contingencies, interest and fees associated with the CFD.

It would also require to specify the date the CFD would be paid off, the date the tax would end and how excess funds would be disbursed once the CFD and tax have ended.

In June, the Grand Jury of Orange County published a report that demanded CUSD keep more oversight of their tax districts, have more transparency with how money from the taxes are spent and set clear closeout dates for the duration of the CFD.

The bill will have to pass the committee and move forward to the Assembly floor. A hearing date has yet to be scheduled regarding the bill.

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comments (2)

  • Disclaimer that I am not a Talega resident. However, Fair Taxation is something that is imperative. The root of this issue is the lack of transparency and accountability by the Capistrano Unified School District (aka CrapoUSD.) In addition to being incompetent at educating our kids they have neglected facilities they run in San Clemente.

  • Talega Residents for Fair Taxation learned first-hand that there needs to be more transparency in the way government operates with respect to Mello-Roos, having stood up to CUSD to remedy the conscious mismanagement of our special tax dollars and taxpayer abuse. For an agency to not want to put Mello-Roos income and line item expenditures out in the open for taxpayers to see, only demonstrates they have something to hide. Thanks to Assemblyman Bill Brough for introducing this critical bill that, if passed, will go a long way in helping prevent future taxpayer abuse. Please show your support for AB 1666 “Taxpayer Transparency and Accountability” legislation by going to the website and click on “E-mail Me” and fill in the information and select “Comment on Legislation”. In the box you can make any comments you want or just type “Support AB 1666”. Then click submit. You will receive a response once the bill is concluded.

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