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AB-1520 Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Act of 2017.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/18/2017 04:00 AM
AB1520:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 17, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1520


Introduced by Assembly Member Burke
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Baker, Gloria, Limón, and Thurmond)

February 17, 2017


An act to add Division 11 (commencing with Section 20050) to the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to poverty.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1520, as amended, Burke. Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Act of 2017.
Existing law establishes various programs that provide cash assistance and other benefits relating to health care, food, and housing, among other things, to qualified low-income families and individuals, including, among others, the California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program, the California Earned Income Tax Credit, Medi-Cal, CalFresh, the California Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC Program), and the Emergency Housing and Assistance Program.
This bill would make legislative findings and declarations regarding child poverty in California. The bill would state the intent of the Legislature to move toward reducing child poverty in this state by 50% over a 20-year period, commencing with the 2018–19 fiscal year and ending with the 2038–39 fiscal year. The bill would also state the intent of the Legislature to use a specified framework as guiding and nonbinding recommendations for purposes of enacting future legislation to fund programs or services that have been proven to reduce child poverty in California and to fund future innovations that are shown to achieve similar outcomes. The bill would set forth certain programs, services, and expenditures that the Legislature should consider for purposes of making appropriations on an annual basis, except as specified. The bill would require the annual Budget Act passed by the Legislature to contain a statement specifying how expenditures in the Budget Act comply with the framework.
This bill would establish the Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force, consisting of specified stakeholders, for purposes of researching, analyzing, and providing guidance to the Legislature in making appropriations pursuant to the framework and in supporting California’s efforts on lifetime wellness, self-sufficiency, and economic strength in families and communities throughout the state. The bill would require the Department of Finance, Legislative Analyst’s Office and the task force, on an annual basis, to report to the Legislature on its their projections of how the Governor’s budget proposal will impact the child poverty rate in California. The bill would also require the department, office and the task force, commencing in 2019, and every 2 years thereafter, to prepare, and report to the Legislature, an analysis regarding child poverty that includes, among other things, includes certain information relating to programs, services, and expenditures and an estimate of the impact that the framework described above has had on the had, or will have, on current or projected future child poverty rate rates, respectively, in California, to the extent the framework has been used by the Legislature. The bill would recommend that the Legislature hold a joint hearing every 2 years, as specified, to assess the impact that the framework has had on the child poverty rate in California and would recommend that the committees involved consider the reports submitted by the department. office and the task force.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 This act shall be known, and may be cited, as the Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Act of 2017.

SEC. 2.

 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) California has the highest rate of child poverty in the nation. One in five children lives under the federal poverty level in California, and 30 percent of African American children and 30 percent of Latino children live in poverty. Without a comprehensive attack on poverty and its root causes, the future economic stability of California is at risk.
(b) Our ability to grow the economy and create jobs is damaged by this continued level of high poverty. The economic health of current and future generations depends on immediately implementing proven measures that provide opportunities to move those left behind out of the cycle of poverty.
(c) The state spends millions of dollars each year addressing the effects of child poverty, which goes hand in hand with adult poverty. The failure to adequately and systematically address child poverty guarantees the continued cycle of poverty.

(c)

(d) Attacking poverty requires an unprecedented investment. There are proven and effective strategies to fight poverty, but, to succeed on a large scale, they must be funded and sustained over a generation. Otherwise, poverty will continue to drain government resources without producing lasting change. Accordingly, in order to achieve the social and economic benefits of reducing poverty, the Legislature should make an ongoing commitment of resources to the effort of reducing poverty.

(d)

(e) This commitment would be demonstrated by the Legislature using a framework for reducing and realized by adopting a framework to be used in the annual budget process that results in investments necessary to reduce child poverty in this state by 50 percent over 20 years.

(e)

(f) In order to accomplish this goal, the state needs to build on existing, but underfunded, initiatives that research shows are effective. These efforts require a comprehensive plan to create economic opportunity for everyone. Expert analysis finds that this approach would provide a 2-to-1 return on investment, save taxpayers money in health care and social services, reduce overcrowding in jails and prisons, decrease the horror of child abuse, and reduce the number of children living in poverty by 50 percent.

SEC. 3.

 Division 11 (commencing with Section 20050) is added to the Welfare and Institutions Code, to read:

DIVISION 11. POVERTY REDUCTION

PART 1. LIFTING CHILDREN AND FAMILIES OUT OF POVERTY ACT

CHAPTER  1. General Provisions
Article  1. Title and Intent
Article  1. 

20050.
 (a) This part shall be known, and may be cited, as the Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Act.
(b) It is the intent of the Legislature to move toward reducing child poverty in this state by 50 percent over a 20-year period, commencing with the 2018–19 fiscal year and ending with the 2038–39 fiscal year.

Article  2. Funding Framework

20055.
 (a) It is the intent of the Legislature to use the framework described in subdivision (b) as guiding and nonbinding recommendations, to the extent feasible and permitted under law, for purposes of enacting future legislation to fund programs or services that have been proven to reduce child poverty in California and to fund future innovations that are shown to achieve similar outcomes. In order to make meaningful progress in reducing child poverty in this state, it is the intent of the Legislature that this framework will result in sufficient investment in programs, services, and innovations that directly address the causes of child poverty.
(b) (1) On an annual basis, the Legislature should appropriate moneys for any of the programs, services, or expenditures set forth in paragraph (4) for the purpose of moving toward reducing child poverty in this state by 50 percent over a 20-year period, commencing with the 2018–19 fiscal year and ending with the 2038–39 fiscal year.
(2) The Legislature should invest in programs, services, and innovations at amounts or levels it deems appropriate for each program, service, or innovation.
(3) If General Fund revenues fall by 10 percent from one fiscal year to the subsequent one, or in the event of a state of emergency, as defined in Section 8558 of the Government Code, the Legislature should consider whether this framework should be temporarily suspended until those circumstances have ended.
(4) The Legislature should consider all of the following programs, services, and expenditures for purposes of making appropriations pursuant to paragraph (1):
(A) Child care and early childhood education, including preschool programs, for children living below the federal poverty level.
(B) Home visiting programs.
(C) After school programs and summer school programs.
(D) Foster care and adoption services.
(E) Job training and placement programs.
(F) Increases in the amount of the California Earned Income Tax Credit, as defined in Section 17052 of the Revenue and Taxation Code, or increases in eligibility for the credit.
(G) Increases in the amount of aid to recipients of the California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program, under Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 11200) of Part 3 of Division 9, or increases in eligibility for the aid.
(H) General Fund expenditures for health care services for undocumented immigrant all children.
(I) General Fund expenditures to maintain the expansion of the Medi-Cal program pursuant to the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111-148). health care coverage for childless adults whose income does not exceed 133 percent of the federal poverty level.
(J) General Fund expenditures for the treatment of substance abuse for individuals eligible for Medi-Cal benefits.
(K) General Fund expenditures for financing, planning, construction, and maintenance of affordable housing for lower income households, very low income households, and extremely low income households, as defined in Sections 50079.5, 50105, and 50106 of the Health and Safety Code, respectively.
(L) General Fund expenditures to support federally designated Promise Zones, as established under the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, that are located in California, and to create state-designated Promise Zones in communities with high poverty for the purpose of coordinating services and prioritizing grant funding for those communities.
(5) The annual Budget Act passed by the Legislature shall contain a statement specifying how expenditures in the Budget Act comply with this subdivision.

(5)

(6) The Legislature should, commencing in 2019, and every two years thereafter, hold a joint hearing, led by appropriate committees from each house of the Legislature, in order to assess the impact that the framework described in this section has had on the child poverty rate in California. The committees should consider, during the hearing, the reports submitted by the Department of Finance pursuant to subdivisions (a) and (b) Legislative Analyst’s Office and the Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force pursuant to subdivisions (b) and (c) of Section 20060, among other reports that the committees deem appropriate.

20060.
 (a) On (1) The Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force is hereby established for purposes of researching, analyzing, and providing guidance to the Legislature in making appropriations pursuant to Section 20055 and in supporting California’s efforts on lifetime wellness, self-sufficiency, and economic strength in families and communities throughout the state.
(2) The task force shall consist of stakeholders that focus on family and child well-being, from birth to adulthood, in furtherance of the goals of reducing child poverty and alleviating family crises, including, but not limited to, at least one representative of each of the following:
(A) State departments.
(B) County agencies.
(C) Community agencies.
(D) Local nonprofit organizations.
(E) Advocates.
(F) Academics.
(G) Think tanks.
(H) The Legislature.
(b) On an annual basis, the Department of Finance Legislative Analyst’s Office and the task force shall, in conjunction with the release of the Governor’s budget proposal on or before January 10 of each calendar year, report to the Legislature on its their projections of how the Governor’s budget proposal will impact the child poverty rate in California.

(b)

(c) Commencing in 2019, and every two years thereafter, the department Legislative Analyst’s Office and the task force shall prepare, and report to the Legislature, an analysis that includes all of the following information:
(1) An estimate of the impact that current programs, services, and innovations established under existing law, as identified by the department, Legislative Analyst’s Office and the task force, have had on the child poverty rate in California.
(2) An estimate of the impact that any potential future investment increases in existing programs, services, or innovations, or any new investments in strategies not employed by the state, as identified by the department, Legislative Analyst’s Office and the task force, would have on the child poverty rate in California.
(3) An estimate of the impact that expenditures and financial formulas for programs affecting children, as identified by the Legislative Analyst’s Office and the task force, have had on county services for children living in poverty.

(3)

(4) (A) To the extent the framework described in Section 20055 has been used by the Legislature, and to the extent relevant information is available, an estimate of the impact that the framework has had on the had, or will have, on current or projected future child poverty rate rates, respectively, in California.
(B) The analysis of the impact of the framework on projected future child poverty rates shall consider measurable childhood indicators that peer-reviewed studies have shown to be predictive of future adult poverty and, accordingly, next-generation child poverty rates. These indicators may include, but are not limited to, school test scores, high school graduation rates, juvenile arrest rates, incidence of reported mistreatment of children, and incidence of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

(c)

(d) The reports required to be submitted pursuant to subdivisions (a) and (b) and (c) shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.