Special Districts and LAFCo
Community Service District Law
As of January 1, 2006 the new Community Services District (CSD) law took effect. The rewrite of the old 1955 law was done in a collaborative effort by the Senate Local Government Committee. It now provides a viable local government option for communities in unincorporated areas of the state.
CSD Law Update -- Information for LAFCos (doc)
CSD Law Revision Background (doc)
The Senate Local Government Committee has published Community Needs, Community Services which includes the text of the new Community Service District Law and commentary on every section. The publication is available by clicking: Community Needs, Community Services. A 'word' version is available at the Senate Local Government Committee website; click: CNCS Report.
County Service Area Law
As of January 1, 2009 the new County Service Area (CSA) law took effect. The rewrite of the old 1953 law was done in a collaborative effort by the Senate Local Government Committee. The new law carefully spells out the CSAs’ policies, powers, procedures, and oversight duties, and clarifies LAFCo's role in providing oversite.
The Senate Local Government Committee has published Serving The Public Interest. The 129-page report reprints the statute’s actual text and provides authoritative commentary on each section. Detailed “source” and “disposition” tables tell reviewers where the new CSA Law’s language came from and where substance of the 1953 statute went. The publication is available by clicking: Serving the Public Interest.
Working with Your LAFCo
Describes the relationships between Special Districts and LAFCo and when districts should come to LAFCo for authorizations. Includes keys to building effective working relationships. Updated September, 2009.
LAFCo 101 for Special Districts
Introduction to the roles and responsibilities of Local Agency Formation Commissions, the interactions between special districts and LAFCo, and the benefits for districts to be seated on their LAFCo. Updated June, 2011.
What's So Special About Special Districts
This newly revised fouth edition of the Citizen's Guide to Special Districts explains what special districts are, their history, authority, legal powers, and different ways to understand them. It also tells you where to get more information about special districts and how to form a new district in your community. 4th edition - October, 2010.
The Metamorphasis of Special Districts: Current Methods for Consolidation, Dissolution, Subsidiary District Formation and Merger
This new white paper provides an overview of the typical methods for extinguishing special districts: consolidations, dissolutions, mergers and the establishment of subsidiary districts. Updated August, 2008.
Consolidation of Unlike Districts
In 2007 legislation was signed into law which removed the sunset on the authority for LAFCo to consolidate districts formed under different laws, and added the ability for LAFCo to initiate a proposal to form a successor district.
CSDA Guide to Special District Laws and Codes
Published by the California Special Districts Association, this is an excellent reference guide to the myriad of statutes that affect local governments and special district governance.
Integrity & Accountability: Exploring Special Districts' Governance
Summary of hearings conducted by the Senate Local Government Committee (24 Nov 2003).
Three Reasons to Revisit Special Districts
Published by the Journal of Government Financial Management, this study argues for improved accountability of special districts; which now account for 40% of all local government entities in the U.S. (July, 2009)