The report found “significant uncertainty” that Brown’s plan would reduce greenhouse gas emissions to the degree he claims.
Governor Brown’s 2014-2015 budget proposal would spend $850-million raised from cap-and-trade auctions, $250 million of that for high speed rail.
But the LAO says high speed rail wouldn’t result in significant greenhouse gas reductions until after 2020, the statutory target.
It says emissions would actually increase during construction even with planned offsets.
High speed rail was not the only concern for the LAO. It found that the administration didn’t do enough analysis to identify and substantiate which programs provide the most greenhouse gas reductions.
Consequently the LAO says it will be difficult for the Legislature to determine which programs will result in the greatest reduction per dollar invested.
El Niño is not expected to end the California drought but ‘atmospheric rivers’ might help.
Forecasters say the chances are diminishing that El Niño will bring rain to California.
The Sacramento Municipal Utility District's shade tree program has been around for 25 years. In spite of the drought, the utility says it will continue to fund the program for at least another two years because of the benefits trees provide.
Environmental groups say the recent California Legislative session was a big win for coastal protection, clean water among other issues.
The City of Sacramento wants to continue a washing machine rebate program that started in 2009 until the end of the decade.