Event Feb 20, 2018

California Society of Municipal Finance Officers

Annual Conference

Best Best & Krieger LLP attorneys will be speaking at the California Society of Municipal Finance Officers’ 2018 Conference entitled “Mission: Possible.”

Kelly Salt
“Rates 101: The Fundamentals of Conducting a Water and Wastewater Rates Study”
Developing water and wastewater rates have become more challenging over the years due to the San Juan Capistrano ruling, changing regulatory requirements, public scrutiny of rate increases, and the overall reduction of water usage. This workshop is designed to inform, educate and clarify issues, processes and challenges associated with water and wastewater rate setting and design. It will help agencies develop water and wastewater rate studies that will meet the scrutiny of the public and elected officials.
Tuesday, Feb. 20
9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

“Common Water and Wastewater Rate Study Challenges”
Water and wastewater rates are under increased scrutiny. Besides the increased legal requirements, elected officials and the public are demanding to understand the rationale behind the rates. This panel will discuss how to develop a defensible rate study and address the common challenges encountered. One important aspect of a rate study is the policy objectives a community wants to achieve. These objectives guide rate structure selection. It is important to get input from elected officials and the public regarding the goals and objective of the rate structure, explain them, and explain how the rate structure achieves these objectives. Besides addressing the policy objectives, it is also important to have an administrative record that clearly shows the derivation of the rates. The administrative record has gained importance due to the recent San Juan Capistrano ruling. This record should enable the reader to walk through the calculation, starting with the budget and how it is allocated to users through the rates. This panel will assist city and district staff in tackling the most common rate study challenges and developing a sound rate structure that both explains the rationality behind the rate structure and the math behind the rates.
Wednesday, Feb. 21
11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Jeff Chang
“Important Developments and Trends Affecting Public Sector Pensions, OPEB, and Other Benefits”
This session will cover timely developments regarding CalPERS, 1937 Act and independent public retirement plans, pending pension and retiree health care legislation, vested rights, recent court cases and other employee benefits “news” of importance to municipal finance officers. Also discussed will be benefits trends and developments that need to be on your radar.
Wednesday, Feb. 21
3:30 - 4:45 p.m.

Isabel Safie
“In 115 We Trust”
The Internal Revenue Code of the Internal Revenue Service established Section 115 irrevocable trusts, which have been used by California local governments for the funding of other postemployment obligations for the last decade. Within the last year, these trusts have become increasingly popular amongst public agencies as supplemental funding mechanisms for pension obligations. As public pension contribution rates continue to ramp up, in some cases potentially exponentially over the next several years, many local governments have entered into or are considering participation in Section 115 retirement trust programs. The Section 115 retirement trust option is viewed as a strategy for pension rate stabilization by a number of participating local governments. Some agencies view retirement trusts as a diversification tool to accelerate pension funding outside of the agency’s retirement system. Still others are moving into irrevocable retirement trusts to send a strong signal to their constituents that the public pension crisis dictates a decisive call to action. This session will provide insight into local government strategies for participating in a Section 115 retirement trust, exploring single and multiple employer trust models, as well as many of the related legal and accounting issues associated with local government irrevocable retirement trust participation. Isabel will be presenting along with Chino Valley Fire District Finance Director Steve Heide and Vavrinek, Trine, Day & Company Partner Roger Alfaro.
Thursday, Feb. 22
12:45 - 2 p.m.

Tuesday, Feb. 20 - Friday, Feb. 23

Riverside Convention Center
3637 5th St.
Riverside, CA 92501

For more information or to register, click here.

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