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Sunday, July 14, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Dumb Move Saves Nothing, Geologists Say

SACRAMENTO (CN) - In a knee-jerk reaction to California's financial crisis, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger killed the California Association of Professional Geologists and assigned its duties to another entity, though the association is "self-funded" and doesn't cost the state a penny, the geologists complain in Superior Court.

ABx4 20, part of the California Budget Act of 2009, eliminates the Association, a nonprofit that gets no money from the General Fund, the geologists say.

The Senate killed the group in July and Schwarzenegger signed the bill into law.

The Assembly Budget Committee's Floor Report summarized the bill's provision, saying it "Eliminates the Board for Geologists and transfers their function to the Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors."

But the Budget Committee acknowledged that change "does not result in any General Fund savings because industry-specific oversight state entities are funded by special funds which collect revenue through licensing fees."

The Association says it wholly sustains itself with application fees, registration fees, fines, and cost recoveries from enforcement actions.

California's debt is estimated at more than $24 billion for fiscal years 2008-09 and 2009-10.

The Association seeks declaratory and injunctive relief and costs. It is represented by Mary Goodhue Deutsch of Escondido.

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