Citizens Against New Local Taxes  (CANLT)

Recent Additions

 
RECENT ADDITIONS
 
1-7-2012
-Added a tab for CalSTRS showing the names & pension amounts of all persons receiving pensions from CalSTRS as of September, 2011. 
There are two files:  one shows retiree pensions, and the other shows retiree dependents being paid, thosse receiving disability, etc.  Click the CalSTRS tab in the Navigation Box to the right to access the data.  NOTE:  The original file that was uploaded on 1-7-2012 only partially uploaded through the letter F;  the full file is now available on the CalSTRS tab and has 226,281 rows.

1-7-2012
-California Supreme Court ruling (S194861)  upholds Governor Jerry Brown's decision to eliminate California Redevelopment Agencies.  Read the decision HERE.

 

10-25-2011
-Added a tab for CalPERS
-Published current (Sept 2011) staff and salary data for:  
the Oak Park Unified School District and the Conejo Valley Unified School District, and the cities of Agoura Hills.

10-20-2011
-Published data from CalPERS showing names & pensions of all persons receiving pensions from CalPERS as of 12-31-2010. 
This is a large 22MB Excel spreadsheet that contains 517,590 names & pension amounts; click HERE  or  the CalPERS tab in the Navigation Box to the right, to access the data [it may take several minutes due to file size].  CalPERS stated that some public agencies (including LVUSD) are identified by "county" (in "Emp Name") and thus cannot be identified by specific agency name (e.g., at present the file does not provide the ability to identify LVUSD-specific retirees).  We are trying to get that data at that level.

10-20-2011
-We have just obtained and will soon publish updated (2011) name & base salary data for the following local public agencies: 
  1. The cities of Agoura Hills, Calabasas, Thousand Oaks & Westlake Village.
  2. The Conejo Valley Unified & Oak Park Unified School Districts, and
  3. The Las Virgenes Municipal Water District 
Note:  As of 10-20-2011, ONLY THE LAS VIRGENES UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT (LVUSD) HAS REFUSED to provide updated name and base salary data requested in our California Public Records Act (CPRA) request.  All the other public agencies listed provided the data we requested quickly, without dispute, and without further "clarification" to our initial request.  We are continuing our efforts to obtain current information from LVUSD, which we have repeatedly requested since 8-8-2011.  We have significant concern about LVUSD's refusal to provide data to which we and the public are legally entitled. (See www.endtaxandspend.com Home Page for more about the difficulty we are having getting the information from LVUSD.)

9-15-2011
-Added a link to WWW.FIXPENSIONSFIRST.COM (which contains information on California public-sector pensions) on the Home Page. 

 
8-28-2011
-Updated Home Page to report that the Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD) has placed a SECOND parcel tax on the November 8, 2011 ballot. 


8-28-2011
-Added information regarding dissolution of the Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency.   See Navigation Box to the right.

3-18-2011
-Added Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency Annual Report for 2009-10.
-Added  "AHRDA Housing Set-Aside $10 Million Bond" (issued ~6/1/2008).

3-10-2011
-Added Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency Annual Reports 1994-95 through 2008-09.

3-7-2011
-Added SUBPAGE to Agoura Hills CA main page, called AH Redevelopment Agency.  The subpage is for the Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency.  It is intended to provide background information about the AHRDA, its performance, and information about CA Governor Jerry Brown's plan to close all CA RDAs.

  
3-5-2011
Updated LVUSD Main Summary Page.  LVUSD has allowed staff salaries & benefits to SKYROCKET far beyond inflation. A cumulative calculation of the excess -- just between 2000/01-2008/09 -- TOTALS $216 MILLION, HERE, in EXCESS, UNJUSTIFIED SALARY & BENEFIT expenditures.  LVUSD "claims it needs more money "for the children", when in fact it let salaries & benefits SKYROCKET, & was also cited for "SIGNIFICANT DEFICIENCIES" in many LVUSD financial processes.
In March 2011, the City CHANGED its Zoning Ordinance HERE, amending it to include clauses for "supportive housing" targeted for specific populations.  It appears the City changed its Zoning Ordinance, without public notification or input, at least in part, to enable them to build the proposed LVUSD townhomes on site at Agoura High School.

-  HELP
STOP THE PROPOSED "low-to-moderate-income" "FOUNTAIN PLACE VILLAS - EDUCATOR TOWNHOMES"
. See "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" page in the Navigation Box to the right for more information.  
NOTE:  As of 9-15-2011, this development is apparently on indefinite "hold".


-Added LINKS to recent newspaper articles, press, and letters regarding the Proposed LVUSD Townhomes.  See "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" page in Navigation Box at right for detailed  information.  Opposition is growing as more of the public becomes aware of this project.


2-25-2011
Added link in NATIONAL Articles & Info to Wall Street Journal article dated 2/24/2011. 
[Source:  WSJ.com  2/24/2011]
Strassel:  Union Power for Thee, But Not for Me 
TWO MILLION+ FEDERAL EMPLOYEES CANNOT BARGAIN FOR WAGES OR BENEFITS.   THEY HAVE FAR LESS POWER THAN STATE PUBLIC SECTOR UNIONS

2-6-2011
ADDED PAGE SHOWING "AVERAGE" AND "MEDIAN" LVUSD TEACHER BASE SALARIES.    LVUSD "Teachers" have generous base salaries.  Proponents of the Proposed "LVUSD Educator Townhomes" incorrectly argue LVUSD teacher salaries are "low";  click HERE to see data from LVUSD from 2/22/2010 (the latest we have as of 2-20-2011; we're awaiting 2011 data), with a new page we added listing just the "Teachers".  We calculated an "average annual salary" and a "median annual salary" for LVUSD Teachers. LVUSD Teachers & other staff enjoy GENEROUS BASE SALARIES (and may receive additional compensation(s) (e.g. for teaching summer school, overtime, etc.).  Further, in addition, they also have posh BENEFITS and exorbitant PENSIONS.

Added a new link on "Home" page - a link at top of the page, to California State Controller John Chiang's "LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMPENSATION REPORTS".     The site includes salary data, and says   "...The State Controller uses his independent authority to guard taxpayer dollars, fight waste and uncover fiscal fraud and abuse. In a press release issued on August 3, 2010, Controller John Chiang announced new reporting requirements for all California cities and counties, directing them to clearly identify elected officials’ and public employees’ compensation.    The information being collected and published by the State Controller’s Office will be based on unaudited information as received from the local government. This includes all data received and processed as of February 04, 2011. ...".


 


1-24-2011
Added a new page -- "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes".   The City of Agoura Hills is proposing a "cooperative effort" between the Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency (AHRDA) and the Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD) to utilize currently-vacant LVUSD-owned land on site at Agoura High School, to build "Educator Townhomes" specifically designated priority for LVUSD/Educator Staff (not the general public), rather than utilize that remaining available land to construct much-needed additional parking on site at Agoura High School.  This project appears inappropriate, ill-advised, and a possible misuse/ abuse of both Public School District land and the Agoura Hills (or any) Redevelopment Agency.  It also appears "fast-tracked", even as CA Governor Jerry Brown plans to terminate all California Redevelopment Agencies.  See "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" page for more info.

- 11-4-2010  Added data to Malibu page:   2010-11 Staff and Salary List, 2010-11 Salary Range List, and 2010-11 Organization Chart

- 10-25-2010  Updated Home Page, adding link to California State Controller John Chiang's online database of salaries and benefits for 600,000 California State employees -- but notably incomplete because it provides positions only, not names, and salary "ranges" (which are broad), rather than exact salaries -- information to which the public is legally entitled to know.

   Also updated STATE CA Articles & Info page with the same info

- 10-23-2010  Added Staff, Salary ranges and Actuals, Benefits and some other information to Thousand Oaks, CA page  

- 10-21-2010  Updated Home Page, adding link to HJTA Legislative Report Cards designed to help Californians gauge how their state representatives performed on taxpayer-related issues.  Searchable by year and zip code (to find your CA representatives). 

- 10-14-2010  Added 9 files to Conejo Valley Unified School District Page, including: Classified Management Salaries & Classified Salaries.

   Added page for Malibu, CA

- 10-12-2010  Added article on State CA Articles & Info page

- 10-8-2010  Added Thousand Oaks page

   Reminder to VOTE ON NOVEMBER 2, 2010!

- 9-28-2010  Added article on National Articles & Info page

- 9-24-2010  Updated Home Page

   Added link to Rasmussen Reports.com

   Added link to Pacific Research Institute

   Added sub-link to HJTA's Ballot Recommendations & Candidate Endorsements for NOV 2010 (.pdf)

   Added "Send us tips about waste, abuse, and/or fraud"

- 9-24-2010  National Page, added link to article regarding Defense Spending Bill (which contained controversial "Don't Ask Don't Tell" and "Dream Amnesty Act" Fails in Senate

- 9/24/2010  State Page, added link to Reuters article about Bell, CA officials arrested for pay scandal

- 9/21/2010  Added link Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association Political Action Committee BALLOT RECOMMENDATIONS AND CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENTS FOR NOVEMBER 2010 ELECTION (.pdf)

- 9/17/2010:  Added CALIFORNIA STATE LINKS Page - Useful links to some of California's State, County, and Local public agencies

- 9/16/2010:  CVUSD Enrollment
- 9/16/2010:  OPUSD Enrollment

- 9/14/2010:  LVUSD Main Page

- 9/13/2010:  LVUSD Enrollment
- 9/13/2010:  OPUSD Staff & Salaries

- 9/11/2010:  CVUSD Staff & Salaries


3-18-2011
- Help STOP the proposed "low-to-moderate income" housing development on-site at Agoura High School.   See page "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" for more information.

3-18-2011
-Added Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency Annual Reports for 2009-10.
-Added the Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency "Housing Set-Aside $10 MILLION Bond"


3-10-2011
- Added Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency Annual Reports 1994-95 through 2008-09.

3-9-2011
- Added a sub-page for the "A H Redevelopment Agency" to the "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" Page & the "Agoura Hills CA" PageThe sub-page provides information about the Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency, its failing performance [Source: Los Angeles Times] and about CA Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to close all CA RDAs.

2-12-2011
- Added LINK to LVUSD SCHOOL BOARD MEETING OF 2/8/2011 TELEVISED VIDEO. The Proposed Educator Townhomes was on the Agenda for discussion but not action. Supt Zimring gave a brief presentation.  The Agoura Hills Asst City Manager then gave a brief presentation.  Several speakers spoke out opposing the project. Evidence suggests LVUSD Supt. Zimring made at least one false statement and one misleading statement to his Board and the public.  See "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" page at right for details.
  

2-10-2011
- Added LINKS to recent newspaper articles, press, and letters regarding the Proposed LVUSD Townhomes.   SEE PROPOSED LVUSD TOWNHOMES page, in navigation box ON the right, for detailed  information. Opposition is growing as more of the public becomes aware of this project.

2-6-2011
HELP STOP THE PROPOSED "FOUNTAIN PLACE VILLA EDUCATOR TOWNHOMES"

- Added more info on the "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" and "LVUSD Salaries" pages
. The "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" gives more detail on this ill-advised, inappropriate "joint-effort" project between the City of Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency (AHRDA) and the Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD) to build homes for LUVSD staff on-site at Agoura High School, rather than use the land for needed parking.

-ADDED IMPORTANT EMAIL ADDRESSES FOR STATE & LOCAL OFFICIALS AND AGENCIES,  FOR YOU TO EMAIL YOUR OPPOSITION.     SEE "PROPOSED LVUSD TOWNHOMES" PAGE, to the right, FOR INFORMATION ON HOW YOU CAN HELP STOP THIS PROJECT. 

-Also, since proponents supporting this project incorrectly argue LVUSD teacher salaries are "low", click HERE to see a revised spreadsheet with a new page with just "Teachers" on it, showing "average" and "median" salaries as of 2/22/2010 (latest data we have available). LVUSD teachers have GENEROUS SALARIES, EXCELLENT BENEFITS, & POSH PENSIONS.    
Note: On 2/5/2011, we requested current LVUSD staff name and exact salary information, and we will publish it when we receive it from LVUSD.

- Added a new link on "Home" page (above) - a link to California State Controller John Chiang's "LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMPENSATION REPORTS".  This site provides salaries (or ranges) for most public agencies in California. 


UPDATE 2-4-2011
Added PUBLIC DISCUSSION FORUM (see link to the right).  At present (2-4-2011) the Discussion Topic listed is the "Proposed Educator Townhomes" to be created on land on-site at Agoura High School, leased from the LVUSD, on which the City of Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency would build "Educator Townhomes" on that land using public tax dollars to build homes specifically designated for/prioritized to LVUSD employees.
 
UPDATE 1-28-2011
See "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes" page on this site (to the right) for more details.
Added city documents that CANLT received 1/20/2011, and also a link to the City's website, which it just updated, which includes more detailed documents about this proposed project.  

UPDATE 1-24-2011
Added a new page:  "Proposed LVUSD Townhomes".   See page, to the right. The City of Agoura Hills is proposing a "cooperative effort" between the Agoura Hills Redevelopment Agency (AHRDA) and the Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD) to utilize currently-vacant LVUSD-owned land on site at Agoura High School, to build "Educator Townhomes" specifically designated priority for LVUSD/Educator Staff (not the general public), rather than utilize that remaining available land to construct much-needed additional parking on site at Agoura High School.  This project appears inappropriate, ill-advised, and a possible misuse/abuse of both Public School District land, and the Agoura Hills (or any) Redevelopment Agency.  It also appears  "fast-tracked", even as CA Governor Jerry Brown plans to terminate all California Redevelopment Agencies.  


 UPDATE 10-25-2010:
[Source: HuffingtonPost.com]
600,000 Local California Government Salaries Posted Online, by California State Controller John Chiang
California State Controller John Chiang's online database contains titles, salary ranges, and benefit information for 600,000 California State employees -- but by positions only, not by names, and by salary ranges (which are quite broad), not actual salaries.  This is a  good start by Controller Chiang, but it's not good enough.  The CA State Supreme court has ruled that exact names and exact salaries are public information and available upon request under the Freedom of Information Public Records Act.  Chiang should mandate that in the next update, employee NAMES (first and last), titles, hire dates, salary basis, and EXACT salaries are provided and published, just as we've done here on our site.   On 10-25-2010, we called upon Controller Chiang (via email and telephone) to expand the data as indicated above, in the next Controller's Office update.

LATEST LOCAL NEWS

*** Taxpayer Alert ***

UPDATE 7-31-2010
The
LAS VIRGENES UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT
  (LVUSD)
  which serves Agoura Hills, Calabasas, & portions of Hidden Hills & Westlake Village, CA, was (in early and mid-2010) considering yet another Parcel Tax, in the midst of the worst economy in decades, & in addition to the Measure E Parcel Tax passed in 2004 ($98 per year for four years) and then extended in 2008 by 8 more years. 

As of 7/31/2010,  LVUSD has apparently decided not to attempt to pass yet another
Parcel Tax this year in 2010.  But stay tuned, they'll undoubtedly make another run at taxpayers in 2011. 

CANLT is publishing information about LVUSD, obtained from LVUSD and the California Department of Education, including:  current and historical information on:  student enrollment, staffing levels, salaries, benefits, audited annual financial year end reports, and past and proposed LVUSD Parcel Taxes and Bond Measures.   The public has a right to know not only why LVUSD thinks it needs yet another Parcel Tax, but also where the money it had has gone & what LVUSD could have done to prevent that.


IN BRIEF...
 
SOME REASONS WHY VOTERS SHOULD REJECT ANY ADDITIONAL LAS VIRGENES UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT LVUSD PARCEL TAX
  • Of LVUSD's total student enrollment, about ~20% are students who don't even live within LVUSD district boundaries.   LVUSD's role is to educate STUDENTS IN OUR DISTRICT -- NOT STUDENTS FROM OTHER DISTRICTS.  On 8/12/2010, the CA Department of Education told us LVUSD is absolutely "NOT required to accept any students who live outside of our District", and is confirmed in the written state codes we've located to date.   If LVUSD does, it should NOT expect local taxpayers to bear more and more of the extra burden via Parcel Taxes that only in-district taxpayers must pay.  Here are the historical numbers of "incoming out-of-district" permits LVUSD has issued, by year:
    • 1999    427 [source CA DOE]
    • 2000    416 [source CA DOE]
    • 2001    475 [source CA DOE]
    • 2002    503 [source CA DOE]
    • 2003    464 [source CA DOE]
    • 2004    610 [source CA DOE]
    • 2005    784 [source CA DOE]
    • 2006    919 [source CA DOE]
    • 2007    1058 [source CA DOE]
    • 2008    1210 [source CA DOE]
    • 2009/10 1609 [source LVUSD]
    • 2010/11 2185 [source LVUSD]
    • 2010/11 1,495 [source: LVUSD,  8/16/2011; note, this contradicts previous  number]
     
    See spreadsheet from LVUSD in March 2010  here, and one CANLT created utilizing data from the California Department of Education (CA DOE) here.  Also see the LVUSD "Enrollment" page for more details.  In 2009/10, assuming enrollment was around 11,500 (we don't yet have an exact figure), then 14% of students in our schools didn't even live in our district.  That has skyrocketed to at least 2,185 - ~20% - in 2010/11.  At an average classroom size of 27 (LVUSD's figure) that equals 81 classrooms not needed for district students.  LVUSD is making unnecessary expenditures of $17M to perhaps as high as -$22M or more/annually (when all other costs are factored in, such as mounting debt, interest,  increasing unnecessary pension obligations, etc.).    Rather than continue to grant permits to "District of Choice" applications,  or worse continue its overt, aggressive recruitment of incoming-out-of-district students -- in its attempt to maintain or increase its artificially-inflated, excessively-large size as in-district enrollment continues to decline -- LVUSD should  reduce/eliminate most or all of these permits for out-of-district students and make corresponding reductions in staff which will reduce expenditures.  ONLY IN-DISTRICT taxpayers pay the LVUSD Parcel Taxes.  Local taxpayers should NOT have to support this excessive out-of-district student population, just so the District can maintain it's unnecessarily large size.  It needs to cut the students who don't live in our district, and then it needs to cut its staff.  CANLT has requested permit data from the CA Dept. of Education for all CA school disricts, to see how LVUSD compares other California school districts relative to issuance of incoming out-of-district permits.  We believe it will be notably excessive.
    • LVUSD has allowed  expenditures in staff salaries, benefits and pensions  to skyrocket (here) far beyond what inflation called for over the years (121% since 1994, when inflation called for only 43%), particularly inappropriate given that student enrollment was stable and has even steadily declined for years.  
    • LVUSD currently has at least seven former employees receiving annual pensions over $100,000 per year (here) and countless others approaching that amount.  Public workers are riding off into "golden sunsets" on the backs of taxpayers.
    • See LVUSD salaries (as of 2/22/2010), here (in searchable .pdf) and here (in Excel).
    • LVUSD's expenditures are excessive and inadequately controlled.  LVUSD's AUDITORS NOTED "SIGNIFICANT DEFICIENCIES" WITHIN LVUSD, including their Payroll process, and also significant deficiencies in other areas including cash disbursements, cash receipts, and check signature processes, in the June 30, 2009 Audited Annual Financial Report.  Here in and around pg 71.
    • LVUSD provided a staff name and salary listing with a "Typist Clerk II" earning $2543.28/hour (yes, hour) here (pg 4),  who shares the same first and last name as a former LVUSD PFA President  here (pg 1).  When challenged about this --in light of both the questionable salary, the coincidence of identical names, and auditor concerns about "Significiant Deficiences" in LVUSD financial processes including Payroll as noted above -- LVUSD refused to identify whether they are related, claimed this was just a "typo" and claimed they created the list "manually" (even though they previously said that they would not create any lists, that they would only provide existing lists).      
    • LVUSD has already passed two parcel taxes in the past seven years (one, and then extended that by another eight years).  District taxpayers already pay a Parcel Tax.  Now they want another, and then they'll want another, and then another...
    • LVUSD has said, and will undoubtedly say again, that it needs more taxes to keep "class sizes small".  School districts routinely use this argument to try to convince voters to pass new taxes.  But in actuality, when LVUSD passed it's 2003/04 Parcel Tax, it quadrupled its Full Time Para-Professional staff, while decreasing the numbers of teachers by 3.5% the same year.  Quadrupling administrative staff while decreasing the number of teachers is not "keeping class sizes small".  The number of teachers has remained relatively constant, so with declining enrollment, class sizes are already automatically smaller.  And, if LVUSD really wanted to keep class sizes smaller, it wouldn't be aggressively recruiting students from outside LVUSD to attend LVUSD schools. See LVUSD staffing page on this site. LVUSD's actions speak louder than their words.
    • Other California school district voters are REJECTING additional Parcel Taxes:
      -- DEFEAT of the Alameda Unified School District Parcel Tax on 6/22/2010
      -- DEFEAT of the Los Angeles Unified School District Parcel Tax on 6/8/2010
      -- DEFEAT of the Santa Monica Malibu Unified School District Parcel Tax on 5/25/2010
    • District residents in the private sector are in the midst of the worst local economy in decades, with unemployment in the private sector at record highs.  Public sector unemployment is  negligible by comparison.   Public employees are better paid, have more generous and better-paid benefits, and lavish pensions that greatly exceed the private sector.   Public employees can retire at ages much earlier than in the private sector, and at annual pensions often exceeding even the earnings of their highest-earning year -- "riding off into golden sunsets on the backs of taxpayers" (including numerous pensions over $100,000/year).
    • LVUSD says its employees have taken "a 5.4% pay reduction"  This is not a true "salary cut", because the reduction is via "furlough days", days staff will not work and thus for which they will not be paid.   A true "salary cut", the type those in the private sector generally take, would be to work at a lesser hourly, daily, monthly, or annual amount -- whatever the actual pay rate basis is -- while  continuing to provide the same level of services. 
    Refer to the individual pages about LVUSD and its finances, in the Navigation Box on the upper right.  These will contain detailed information about LVUSD as we obtain and can publish it.



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