7:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Exhibitor Showcase Open

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.

Continental Breakfast with the Exhibitors (Raffle)

8:45 – 11:00 a.m.
Opening Keynote Presentation

Mark Scharenbroich

Nice Bike – Making Connections that Move People

Mix thousands and thousands of black leather, bandana wearing, tattoo bearing Harley-Davidson riders with a 100th Anniversary and one beige rental car and the end result will be the perfect metaphor for connecting with others: “Nice Bike.”

Nice Bike acts as a powerful catalyst to help build stronger, more unified teams. The message inspires audience members to be more engaged and passionate about connecting with others.

Join Emmy award-winning speaker, Mark Scharenbroich as he takes you for a fun ride on how to be effective at making meaningful connections in both your professional and personal life. His Nice Bike principle is supported by three strong actions: Acknowledge, honor and connect.

11:15 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

CSDA Finance Corporation Board and Annual Meeting

Breakout Sessions

11:15 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Application of the California Environmental Quality Act to Districts Projects

Lozano Smith

The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is a complicated body of law governing public projects, and its application is very broad. Failure to comply can result in significant delays. This workshop will review the application of CEQA and other environmental laws to district projects, how to identify those projects, and how CEQA is used by project opponents. This workshop will explore the application of CEQA and other environmental laws to projects, including renovations, expansions, and real property sales or acquisitions. It will also help districts identify other actions that are deemed to be projects under CEQA. This presentation will provide participants with an overview of the CEQA process, a better understanding of the applicability of other environmental laws, and answers to their real-world questions.

California on Fire: Special Districts Addressing Future Wildland Fires

SCI Consulting Group

Come learn what we all need to do to prepare for California’s future wildland fire crisis focusing on Fire Suppression including evacuation, training and communications; Forest Management and Structure Resiliency.

California’s Top 5 New Employment Laws in Response to the #MeTooMovement

Meyers Nave

In response to #MeToo, Governor Brown signed multiple bills into law to address sexual harassment and gender discrimination and remove structural issues that enabled this environment to persist in the workplace. The session explains the top 5 new laws and new obligations created for employers: (1) AB 3109 (bars prohibition on testifying about alleged sexual harassment or criminal conduct, (2) SB 820 (bans non-disclosure provisions and secret settlements), (3) SB 1300 (limits non-disparagement clauses, expands employer liability, authorizes bystander training (4) SB 1343 (expands sexual harassment prevention training) and (5) SB 224 (expands relationships subject to sexual harassment claims). The session also provides practical tips on how special districts can leverage these changes to create a more inclusive and civil workplace that helps prevent harassment from occurring and makes it more likely to be reported.

Fast Track Your Leadership Succession Planning

CPS HR Consulting

The need for leadership succession planning in the public sector is rapidly growing due to a perfect storm developing in the employment climate. This storm is built on the ongoing retirements of current leadership, a tight labor market, and a need for ways to better engage employees. In this session, we will discuss how to fast-track your leadership succession planning using a process to identify leadership potential and overcome barriers to finding reliable and trustworthy learning and development resources.

Financing New Projects with New Revenues: CFD and Assessment District Planning, Implementation and Compliance


Utilizing land-secured Special Financing Districts (SFDs) requires considerable planning, thoughtful implementation and attention to the ever-changing legal landscape. This session will cover these components, including a Desert Recreation District case study.

Policies vs. Procedures – What’s the Difference?

CPS HR Consulting

Are your policies and procedures bloated and hard to follow? Is it difficult for new employees to find answers to work-related questions?
This popular breakout session provides insights to better develop and organize clear and useful policies and procedures.
Come learn:

  • What content belongs where.
  • Why separating policies from procedures matters?
  • Which tools work best to quickly and effectively produce “reader-friendly” policies and procedures.

Public Records Laws, Requests and Responses – What You Need to Know

Best Best & Krieger

The California Public Records Act (PRA) was adopted to foster transparency, accountability and greater public access to government records, but compliance can be complicated, costly, and time consuming. This is especially true with increasing amounts of electronic data being stored, accessed and shared on both public and private devices. In this session, Best Best & Krieger attorney Christine Wood will provide information on making the most of publicly available information, knowing requesters’ rights, public offices’ obligations and the secrets to a successful public records request, and much more. After completing this session, attendees will feel more confident in knowing the best practices for responding to PRA requests.


12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

Lunch with the Exhibitors

All conference attendees are welcome to attend lunch in the exhibit hall. Enjoy your lunch while taking time to learn more about our exhibitors and the valuable services they provide. From risk management, accounting, HR, legal, banking services, and more – our exhibitors have some of the best of what you’re looking for!

Lunch is included in conference registration.

Breakout Sessions

2:15 – 3:30 p.m.

Are Your Electronic Devices Spying on You?


The short answer is yes. Smart homes and the Internet of Things (IoT) are the next frontier for the battle for your privacy and digital rights. Do you own an Alexa device, Google Home device, or even a smartphone? What about a printer? You might be surprised how much data is being gathered by your devices. And if you’re on Facebook, or even just surfing the internet, the collection of information about you is growing...and likely connects employees with your district. With this understanding, what can we do to protect ourselves? In this talk we’ll explore data collecting trends and share strategies you can employ to keep yourself and your district safe.

Can’t We All Just Get Along? A Guide to Building Better Board and Manager Roles and Relationships

Rauch Communication Consultants

No area is more fraught with downsides or more full of potential for mutual success than board and manager roles and relationships. This session provides a structured opportunity for expert presentation, questions and answers, and sharing of experiences. You will definitely take home ideas for change and improvement, including: how boards and managers can work more effectively together; how to run effective board meetings and provide clear policy direction to the Manager; a pain free and productive method for evaluating the Manager’s performance;  tips on how to ensure your Board is focusing on the right information and issues; ideas for new director orientation; and more.

Independent Contractor Do’s and Don’ts

Aleshire & Wynder

From selecting to using and paying independent contractors - we will discuss the regulations you need to know.

Privacy in a Connected World Has Risks

Nossaman, LLP

The session will discuss various facets of privacy in a changing technology and legal landscape. The session will cover California’s evolving legal landscape governing privacy, public employee issues relating to privacy, and the intersection between social media, privacy, and open government. This presentation contains critical information for governmental agencies, including practical solutions and best practices for managing privacy-related risks.

Required Ethics AB1234 Compliance Training (Part 1)

Meyers Nave

AB1234 mandates that local agency officials receive two hours of ethics training every two years. This two part training covers all the required topics, including laws relating to: (1) personal financial gain by public servants (conflict-of-interest, bribery), (2) claiming perquisites of office (gift, travel and mass mailing restrictions, use of public resources for personal or political purposes, free or discounted transportation), (3) government transparency (financial interest disclosure requirements, open meeting laws), and (4) fair process (incompatible offices, competitive bidding, nepotism).

Setting the Stage for Success: How to Prepare for Capital Improvement Financing

CSDA Finance Corporation

You may be ready to expand that facility, purchase that property, install those solar panels, or replace those pipes. But are you ready to access financing? If your district is planning to use debt to fund all or part of a mission-critical capital project, it is important to know what investors and lenders are looking for and what your options are. Join the expert consultants from the CSDA Finance Corporation and a guest speaker from S&P Global for a discussion of funding structures, sources of repayment, credit analysis, and more.

Transparency and Accountability: Updates on the Brown Act and Conflicts of Interest

Meyers Nave

The Brown Act provides legal requirements designed to help guarantee the public’s right to attend and participate in meetings of local legislative bodies, as well as promote transparency by ensuring access to information involved in local government decision making. Conflicts-of-interest laws were created for the principle that the personal or private financial considerations of government officials should not enter the decision-making process. Presented by a recent member of the California Fair Political Practices Commission, this session provides an update on new developments regarding special district compliance with both areas of law.

Breakout Sessions

3:45 – 4:45 p.m.

District Dissolutions – the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: How LAFCOs can Initiate Involuntary Dissolutions, How Districts Can Initiate Dissolutions or Consolidations, and Why LAFCo Participation Matters

Colantuono Highsmith Whatley, PC

A session providing a practical, informative discussion of the key provisions of the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Act, how LAFCOs work on the ground in relation to Special Districts and proposed voluntary and involuntary dissolutions and consolidations, and how and why special districts will benefit from being informed and active participants with LAFCO. Taught by two City Attorneys with significant LAFCO experience, including representing applicants before LAFCOs and advising LAFCOS as General Counsel, this workshop will provide participants with an understanding of the LAFCO process and why it is important for special districts. We will focus on several involuntary district dissolution case studies as examples of how and why LAFCos can pursue involuntary dissolutions, what subject districts can do in response, and how and why district-initiated dissolutions and consolidations can be useful tools to improve services to their communities. 

District Elections and the California Voting Rights Act: Who is Targeted, and What Happens When You Are Challenged?

National Demographics Corporation and Cole Huber LLP

The wave of legal challenges to election systems that has swept through California’s cities and school districts recently swept up many special districts across the state. This panel will discuss which districts have been targeted so far and who is likely to be challenged in the future; what options a district has when it receives a challenge; and what is involved in making the change to by-area Board elections.

General Manager Performance Evaluation: A Proven Approach that Helps Build an Effective Working Relationship Between the Board and Manager

Rauch Communication Consultants

An effective and complete General Manager Performance evaluation is essential for the Manager to perform at his or her best, and to ensure an effective working relationship between the Board and Manager. But many Boards tend to fumble, ignore or mishandle this critical activity. This session details a proven process that will help you give each board member and the manager an opportunity to hear from each other; incorporates both subjective and objective metrics; ensures there is policy level direction to clarify the managers’ goals for the coming year, and; links evaluation to the strategic plan and manager’s goals for the year. There will be time for questions and answers.

Meeting Management: Tips for Efficient and Effective Public Meetings

Richards Watson Gershon

Public meetings influence on how your agency is perceived by the public. Basic meeting management strategies can make Board meetings more effective and promote an image of efficiency and transparency.

Promote the Small Stuff

Dublin San Ramon Services District and Probolsky Research

Learn how special districts throughout the state are getting big public support by promoting lower profile parts of their operations such as cell tower rental revenue, bidding cooperatives, watershed trust funds, etc.

Required Ethics AB1234 Compliance Training (Part 2)

Meyers Nave

See previous session description.

The Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act and How it Benefits Public Works Projects Implemented by Special Districts

Panel Discussion

The Uniform Public Construction Accounting Act provides special districts with the ability to implement alternative bidding procedures on public works projects less than $200,000 that supports efficient and flexible project delivery. The session will cover key provisions of the act, the policies and procedures manual published by the State Controller’s office, and examples of how the act is utilized to promote efficient project delivery for special districts.

Networking Reception

5:00 – 6:30 p.m.

Mix & Mingle in the Exhibit Hall: Grand Prize Drawings

Connect with exhibitors in the exhibit hall for a cocktail and appetizer before you go out on the town for dinner. Be sure to enter for one more chance to win one of our fabulous prizes!

Exhibit hall closes on Thursday, September 26 at 6:30 p.m.