California Performance Review To Recommend Major State Government Overhaul
Officials working on the California Performance Review on Wednesday announced that they have submitted to Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) their proposal to overhaul the state government, a plan that would consolidate, reorganize and eliminate a large number of the state's 60 boards and commissions, possibly including the Medical Assistance Commission, the AP/Sacramento Bee reports (Chorneau, AP/Sacramento Bee, 5/20). The proposal also is expected to recommend consolidating other entities in the Health and Human Services Agency, reducing Medi-Cal fraud and removing some of the state's 1,500 political appointees (California Healthline, 5/13). According to the AP/Bee, the 2,000-page proposal likely calls for the elimination of "hundreds -- if not thousands -- of jobs." MAC likely is a "key target" because it is one of 14 boards and commissions that pay employees at least $90,000 annually for less than full-time positions, the AP/Bee reports (AP/Sacramento Bee, 5/20). In all, the report contains 1,000 recommendations on 500 issues.
Although implementing the overhaul would cost the state an estimated $100 million, it would save the state billions of dollars in one to two years, according to Chon Gutierrez, co-executive director of the project and interim director of the Department of Motor Vehicles (Delsohn, Sacramento Bee, 5/21). Billy Hamilton, a consultant who is one of the leaders of the project, estimated that the plan could yield savings of at least $150 million for the state. The Legislature likely will not consider the plan until next year because the group of 260 consultants and volunteer state employees working on the review did not submit it to the Little Hoover Commission by April 30. That commission -- a state oversight panel that is legally required to review the reorganization plan -- will consider it for one month before forwarding it to the Legislature for consideration. Then, the Legislature must approve or reject it within 60 days or it automatically would become law; lawmakers cannot amend the special law (California Healthline, 5/13). Gutierrez said the Legislature would need to pass additional legislation to accompany some of the changes if the plan is approved, the Bee reports (Sacramento Bee, 5/21). The review is expected to be made public at the end of June (AP/Sacramento Bee, 5/20).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.