Home > posts > California’s Listless Fourth Branch of Government
May 25th, 2011 1:56 pm
California’s Listless Fourth Branch of Government

An editorial in today’s Stockton Record crystallizes one of the reasons California is facing a $20 billion deficit: it has no master list of state-funded commissions and boards.

Per the Record:

…apparently no one really knows how many are out there although 300 is the number most often cited. A 1989 report by the Little Hoover Commission put it at 400. More recently, the California Performance Review evaluated 339 state boards and commissions. Others have put the number as high as 1,000.

How much they’re costing also is unknown, although getting rid of the 37 panels Brown has targeted would save about $10 million. Admittedly, that’s a drop in the proverbial state budget bucket, but do the math, and if 37 panels are costing us $10 million, what are all of them costing?

And lest anyone think this scandal isn’t bipartisan:

When he swept into office, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger vowed to dismantle the forest of boards and commissions that had grown like weeds in state government. That led to the creation of another panel to review government operations.

Among the panel’s findings: “These entities are so scattered and numerous across government that arriving at a firm number is nearly impossible. In our search, there was no single source we could turn to find out which commissions existed and why. In fact, state government has no master list of all boards and commissions and the thousands of political appointees that populate them.”



Comments are closed.