State Rep. Sharon Quirk-Silva (D- Fullerton) continues to impress as an effective state legislator and yesterday, she came through in a big way for Orange County with an announcement that Assembly Bill (AB) 701, a bill she wrote to settle a long-term Vehicle License Fee Adjustment Account (VLFAA) dispute between Orange County and the state, has unanimously passed the State Legislature and is now headed to Gov. Brown, who is expected to sign it.
“AB 701 will provide Orange County with $53 million to alleviate the need to slash budgets, cut jobs and potentially harm public safety in this fiscal year,” said Assemblywoman Quirk-Silva. “Thankfully, everyone was able to work together on this problem and reach a solution that treats Orange County the same as the other 57 counties in the state.”
Orange County owes the state $148 million as a result of a 2013 court decision concerning the restoration of the county’s VLFAA property tax allocation. Without a deal, the county would have been forced to consider severe budget reduction strategies that could have included laying off employees and making additional funding reductions for public safety programs in this fiscal year. AB 701 ensures both, more time to pay this debt, and that Orange County will receive the same proportion of funds distributed by the VLFAA as other county governments. Additionally, the state will adjust the baseline for this revenue allocation to $53 million.
“AB 701 will address this inequity that currently exists, which will help protect middle class jobs and preserve critical county services,” stated Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana), who co-authored the bill.
“It will be a relief to put this much-misunderstood issue behind us with the cooperation of the Governor, Speaker, President pro Tempore, and the entire Orange County delegation and Members on both sides of the aisle,” said Diane Harkey (R-Dana Point).
Passage of AB 701 allows for the county to balance their budget in this fiscal year and provides certainty for future revenue growth.
“The entire Orange County delegation supported this measure,” continued Assemblywoman Quirk-Silva. “The Governor’s signature will allow the county and state to move forward on this issue.”
For those who didn’t know, Rep. Quirk-Silver represents the 65th Assembly District, which includes the communities of Buena Park, Cypress, Fullerton, Hawaiian Gardens, La Palma, Stanton, and West Anaheim.
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