LWV California - News Update

♦ Early Legislative Victory - SB126, Charter School Transparency


After earning bipartisan support in the Senate and Assembly, Governor Gavin Newsom signed SB 126, requiring charter school governing boards to comply with the same accountability and transparency laws that traditional school district governing boards already follow.

SB 126 will ensure that, as public schools, all charter schools are responsible stewards of the public funds they receive.  The measure specifically ensures that charter school governing boards observe the same open meeting, conflict-of-interest, and disclosure laws as traditional public schools.

 Under the Ralph M. Brown Act and the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act, all meetings of a state body or a legislative body of a local agency must be open and public, with everyone being allowed to attend. The California Public Records Act requires state and local agencies to make their records publicly available. Government Code Section 1090 prohibits public officials from being financially interested in any contract made by them in their official capacity, or by any body or board of which they are members.

SB 126 is a good government bill that will ensure that schools are learning centers, not profit centers.  Transparency requirements and common ethical practices will apply to all public dollars that go to public schools, starting January 2020.

In addition to the  League of Women Voters of California, SB 126's passage was also supported by the American Civil Liberties Union of California, American Federation Of State, County And Municipal Employees, Council 57, Association Of California School Administrators, California Association of School Business Officials, California County Superintendents Educational Services Association, California Federation of Teachers, California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO, California NAACP, California School Boards Association, California State PTA, California Teachers Association, Kern County Superintendent Of Schools,  Public Advocates Inc., Riverside County Office of Education, San Diego Unified School District, San Francisco Unified School District, School Employers Association Of California, Service Employees International Union California and Small School Districts Association.

♦ Shape California’s Future: 2020 Citizens Redistricting Commission

Every ten years, after the federal census, California must re-establish the boundaries of its Congressional, State Senate, State Assembly and State Board of Equalization districts to reflect new population data and shifting populations. The Voters FIRST Act gave this power to California citizens ensuring that new and fair political boundaries are drawn without special interests, politics and political influence, by creating a 14-member Citizens Redistricting Commission.

California citizens who are eligible may submit an application to the California State Auditor’s Office during the initial 60-day application period from June 10, 2019, to August 9, 2019.

This is your chance to become a part of creating fair and transparent district boundaries that serve the best interests of the people of California. If you believe politics are better when all sides work together and you have a passion for civic engagement, apply to become one of 14 new 2020 commissioners.

Voters gave the responsibility of implementing the selection process to form each commission to the California State Auditor. Please sign up below to ensure you stay up to date on the latest activities related to the 2020 Citizens Redistricting Commission selection process.

833-421-7550 or  shapecaliforniasfuture [at] auditor.ca.gov