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Resource Page Contents
a click will take you there!
LAFCo Court Decisions and Attorney General Opinions
Sphere of Influence and Municipal Service Reviews
City Incorporations, Disincorporations and Annexations
Special District Resources
Local Government Fact Sheets and Reports
Legislative Reports
Water Management Issues
Annual Conference Materials
CALAFCO Association Documents
Links and Web sites



Guide to the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act of 2000 -- 2011 update (pdf version). This guide, produced by the Assembly Local Government Committee includes the complete text of the LAFCo law and related sections of the Revenue and Taxation Code. It is updated with all changes in laws through 2011 (November, 2011).
Guide to C-K-H Reorganization Act of 2000 -- 2009 update word version -- Handy if you want to excerpt portions. (Note: this only contains the body of the law)

Printed copies of the 2011 edition of the Guide to the CKH Government Reorganization Act are now available from CALAFCO. To order copies please complete the: CKH Guide Order Form.

Summary of Changes to LAFCo Law from 2001 to 2010 -- Summary of LAFCo-related legislation chaptered each year since C-K-H became law.

LAFCo 101 -- Handout from presentations introducing Local Agency Formation Commissions.

It's Time To Draw the Line: A Citizen's Guide to LAFCo 2003 (pdf)
It's Time to Draw the Line: A Citizen's Guide to LAFCo 2003 (word version -- Handy if you want to excerpt portions for a report. This is a large document)

Growth Within Bounds: Report of the Commission on Local Governance for the 21st Century (pdf). This extensive report is the result of the Commission's 16 months of work to review current statutes and recommend revisions to the laws that govern city, county, and special district formation and boundary changes, along with overall governance issues. This key report formed the basis of the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act of 2000, and is a foundation for the role and function of LAFCo.

Summary of Legislative Intent in Enacting Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg (pdf)

Reinventing LAFCo: Changes Made by the Cortese-Knox-Herzberg Act (pdf). This primer for Commissioners was first distributed in March, 2001. It highlights the major changes to LAFCo authority, procedures and independence which were implemented in 2000.

Senate Local Government Committee Quick List 2009. An annotated glossary of local government statutes. Newly revised, the 2009 version lists nearly 200 key state laws, their statutory citations, and handy references.  Also included are step-by-step directions for retrieving public documents and a list of helpful web sites.

newResource page with links to Supreme Court, Court of Appeal and Superior Court decisions, and Attorney General Opinions which affect LAFCo.

LAFCo Court Decisions and Attorney General Opinions

Judicial Review of LAFCo Decisions and Boundary Changes -- Summarizes timelines for judicial review of LAFCo decisions and boundary changes.


CALAFCO White Paper: The Good, the Bad and the Confusing: Current Protest Requirements under the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act of 2000 (2009-pdf)

CALAFCO White Paper: The Metamorphosis of Special Districts: Current Methods for Consolidation, Dissolution, Subsidiary District Formation and Merger (2008-pdf)

CALAFCO Summary of G.C. 56133: New or Extended Services Outside Jurisdictional Boundaries (pdf)

CALAFCO Report: 25 Year Summary of LAFCo Activity: 1963-1988 (pdf)

Sphere of
and Municipal

From the Governor's Office of Planning & Research:
Municipal Service Review Guidelines, August 2003 (pdf)
Municipal Service Review Guidelines Appendices, August 2003 (pdf)

CALAFCO Legislative Subcommittee Final Report on Review of SOI / MSR Statutes -- September, 2005. Includes results of LAFCo survey Pros and Cons of Municipal Service Reviews. (pdf)
Special District
Resources on special districts in California and seating special districts on LAFCo can be found by clicking: CALAFCO Special District Resources

CALAFCO University Incorporations Workshop (ppt)
Slides from the workshop, including new materials presented at the workshop.

California Cities by Incorporation Date -- List of all California cities by date of incorporation (doc)

Incorporations Terms and Conditions (pdf) -- A summary of the terms and conditions imposed on seven recent incorporations (March, 2008).
Riverside Incorporation Terms and Conditions (pdf) -- Findings, determinations and terms and conditions for the four recent incorporations. From Riverside LAFCo (2008-2011)

Newly Incorporated Cities: Successfully Transitioning to Cityhood (pdf) -- A CALAFCO White Paper on surviving the post-incorporation blues. A checklist of everything new cities need to think about during the transition (September, 2008).

Incorporations, Annexations and the New Public Finance -- How the 2006 changes in VLF and property tax subventions affect incorporations and annexations. From the Senate Local Government Committee (Nov. 2006):
City Incorporations and the New Public Finance (doc)
City Annexations and the New Public Finance (doc)

Strategic Considerations for City Annexations in California -- Research document prepared by Lindsay Eileen Keyes, CSU-Sacramento (2008) for MPA.

Guide to the LAFCo Process for Incorporation (pdf)
Guide to the LAFCo Process for Incorporation Appendices (pdf)

Calculating the New Supplemental VLF Amounts for Incorporations and Inhabited Annexations-- From Michael Coleman at CaliforniaCityFinance.com. How to estimate the new VLF allocations for annexations and new incorporations under the 2006 legislation, AB1602 (Laird).
The VLF for Property Tax Swap of 2004: Effects on inhabited annexations and new incorporations (revised, Oct. 2006)-- From Michael Coleman at CaliforniaCityFinance.com. A more complete discussion of the VLF for property tax swap of 2004, its problematic provisions for annexations and new incorporations, and the remedies provided in the new 2006 law, AB1602.

NewCALAFCO U White Paper: Cities Merge? A Workshop on Municipal Consolidations and Disincorporations -- Discussion and legislative questions from a CALAFCO University
Workshop held on June 29, 2012.

Municipal Disincorporations in California -- By John H. Knox and Chris Huchinson. An excellent in-depth review of the history, background and legal effect of disincorporation in California. Published in the Public Law Journal (California State Bar) and posted with permission of author. (2010)

Island Annexation Resources Excellent resource materials on island annexations (small pieces of unincorporated territory substantially surrounded by a city) are available from Santa Clara LAFCo:

California Law provides some options to incorporation for those unincorporated communities seeking more of voice in local decisions which affects them. Municipal Advisory Councils and Area Planning Commissions provide two opportunities for citizens to participate in decision making. Two historic papers outline the "county town" concept that continues to be viable today:

Very Local Planning: A Study of Area Planning Commissions in California (July, 1980, State Office of Planning and Research)
Municipal Advisory Councils: An Experiment in Community Participation (June, 1977, State Office of Planning and Research)


New Availability of an Old Water Resource! The beautiful California Water Atlas is now online. Originally published by the Governor's Office of Planning and Research in 1979 it provides a innovative and well-illustrated way of viewing California's water supply information. You can find this wonderful resource at: California Water Atlas.

LAFCo's Challenge: Water as a Fundamental Planning Element in a Multi-Jurisdictional Planning Environment. A perspective on LAFCo water management decisions from hydrologist Robert Shibatani. This is the complete paper as highlighted in the November 2005 issue of The Sphere.

Water Rights: Supply Issues for LAFCo. Introduction to water rights and LAFCo decisions by Attorney Marsha A. Bursch. Presented at 2005 Annual Conference.

California Water Trends. 2005 Annual Conference Power point presentation with an overview of water management trends from by Hydrologist Robert Shibatani and Mark Horn.

Priming the Pump: Using Water Decisions Effectively in LAFCo Decision Making. An in-depth CALAFCO University Course on water supply, storage and law.
Course Materials (requires member log-in)
Fact Sheets and

These fact summary sheets are prepared by the Senate Local Government Committee and provide an excellent overview of local agencies. Updated to reflect 2009 data.
City Fact Sheet (pdf)
County Fact Sheet (pdf)
Special District Fact Sheet

Williamson Act: Past, Present, Future? (March, 2010)
Summary Report by the Senate Local Government Committee for a hearing on the Act held on 3 March. An excellent summary of the Act, history of the law, and what the future holds for the law. Comprehensive summary includes staff briefing, summary of speaker comments, research paper and all of the materials distributed by speakers at the hearing.
Full Summary Report (large pdf; will take a few minutes to download)
Staff Briefing Report Only

Find Any Public Park or Open Space in California (March, 2010).
Get current GIS data and detailed park information for over 15,000 parks. Easy to use interactive map. Prepared by the non-profit GreenInfo Network. Visit www.ParkInfo.org.

Revenues and Responsibilities: An Inventory of Local Tax Powers (December, 2010)
Handy reference on the taxing authorities of cities, counties and special districts. Provides an annotated inventory of all local tax powers. Provides answers to questions like What taxes can local officials levy?  Which taxes fit which purposes?  How do city taxes differ from county taxes?  From the Senate Local Government Committee.

Governments Working Together: A Citizen's Guide to Joint Power Agreements (Aug. 2007)
This guide from the Senate Local Government Committee discusses the authority, composition, and use of JPAs in California. (pdf)

Catalogue of Senate Citizen Guides -- The Senate Local Government has published a series of Citizen Guides to California local public agency processes and laws. These excellent resources cut confusion and make government more accessible. Eight guides are now available. Order Form.

Conference and

Miss a session or couldn't attend a CALAFCO conference? Check out these handout and presentation materials in the Member's Library (some will require a member log-in):

2011 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials
2011 Staff Workshop Handout and Presentation Materials
2010 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials
2009 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials

2008 Staff Workshop Presentation Materials

2007 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials

2006 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials
2006 Staff Workshop Handout and Presentation Materials
2005 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials

2004 Conference Handout and Presentation Materials




CALAFCO Adopted Budget FY 2012-2013
CALAFCO Board and Executive Director Compensation Report - FY 2011-2012
CALAFCO Policies and Procedures (including Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation)
GuideStar Charity Report for CALAFCO
CALAFCO IRS Form 990 for 2010
CALAFCO IRS Form 1023 - Original Application for Exempt Status

2012 CALAFCO Annual Events Calendar (pdf)
CALAFCO Conference and Workshop Schedule:

CALAFCO Member Web site Log In


CALAFCO Office Location, Parking and Lodging (pdf)


Need to research LAFCo law?
This interface gives you access to the Legislative Counsel's
web site search engine.

Governor's Office of Planning & Research (OPR)
OPR documents relating to incorporations and service reviews as well as LAFCo Reform.

California Assembly  and  California Senate
The California Legislature Online

Official California Legislative Information
The Legislative Counsel's search engine for all California law.

The Quick List to Legislative Citations
An annotated glossary of local government statutes - 200
9 version

Legislative Analyst's Office
Analyses bills and conducts studies for the Legislature.

State Controller's Publications
Key information for LAFCo fiscal matters. For local government financial reports from the State Controller click: Current Local Government Financial Reports.

California Local Government Finance Almanac
Data, statistics, analyses, and articles on California city and county finance.

California Environmental Resources Evaluation System

Follow the CERES web links to land use and planning information.

Public Policy Institute of California

Nonpartisan research on major economic, social and political issues in California


of California State Organizations

California State Association of Counties

League of California Cities

Association of California Water Agencies

California Special Districts Association

Regional Council of Rural Counties

Local Government Commission

California Association of Councils of Governments

California Association of Recreation and Park Districts

California Association of Resource Conservation Districts

California Association of Sanitary Agencies

Fire Districts Association of California

California Chapter American Planning Association

California Farm Bureau Federation

League of Women Voters of California

Mosquito and Vector Control Association of California

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