December 8, 2016

CSLB Board Meeting Highlights 12/8/16

We hope that you enjoy the CSLB Board Meeting Highlights of the December 8, 2016, Board Meeting in San Jose. For a downloadable copy in Adobe PDF please click here and save to your hard drive.

Abdulaziz, Grossbart & Rudman


DECEMBER 8, 2016
Kenneth S. Grossbart
Abdulaziz, Grossbart & Rudman

The Contractors' State License Board held a Board Meeting in San Jose on December 8, 2016.
Board Members Present:
Chair, Agustin "Augie" Beltran; Vice Chair, Kevin Albanese; Secretary, Linda Clifford; David Dias; Susan Granzella; Joan Hancock; Ed Lang; Michael Layton; Frank Schetter; and Nancy Springer
Board Members Absent:
Marlo Richardson; David De La Torre; Pastor Herrera Jr.; Johnny Simpson; and Paul Schifino.

There are no vacancies on the Board.

Cindi A. Christenson, the current CSLB Registrar will be retiring in May, 2017.
Also, Chief Deputy Registrar, Cindy Kanemoto, will be retiring on December 30, 2016. The CSLB honored her and her long career in state service, which started in 1977. We are sorry to see her go. The recruitment of the new Chief Deputy Registrar will be put on hold until a new Registrar is located.
The Department of Consumer Affairs' Office of Human Resources gave a presentation on the process of selecting a new Registrar. The current and proposed Registrar Duty Statements were discussed, reviewed and modified and the Board will vote on the final duty statement.
A Recruitment Committee has been started with board members Kevin Albanese and Susan Granzella heading the committee.
Amendment to Business & Professions Code Sections 7058.5, 7058.6, 7075.1, 7085, 7145.5 and Labor Code Section 6501.5:
This was recommended for approval by the full Board to make the following five changes:
  1. Changing the Codes to reflect the new C-22 Asbestos Abatement classification;
  2. Eliminates the provision where an LLC license can allow the acquisition of a license through an asset sale since the CSLB can't implement this since a license is not an asset that can be acquired through a sale;
  3. A proposal that the Registrar retains discretion on referring complaints to arbitration in the CSLB's arbitration program;
  4. An amendment incorporating CalOSHA's regulations relating to safety provisions so that CSLB has authority to discipline a contractor for violations of these regulations; and
  5. Updating the provision that provides for license suspension for failure to resolve an outstanding liability to reflect that licensees may use a taxpayer identification number.
Amendment to Business & Professions Code Sections 7099.2 and 7124.6:
It was recommended for approval by the full Board which would create a letter of admonishment as an intermediate step between the existing "advisory notice" and citation. It would constitute a first tier of discipline.

Existing law (Business & Professions Code section 7031):
  1. Authorizes a person who uses an unlicensed contractor to bring an action in any court of competent jurisdiction for recovery of compensation paid to the unlicensed contractor for performance of any act or contract.
  2. Authorizes a court to determine that a contractor has substantially complied with licensure requirements, under limited circumstances.
  3. Provides that the four criteria the court should consider to determine substantial compliance are that the contractor:
    • Had been duly licensed as a contractor in this state prior to the performance of the act or contract;
    • Acted reasonably and in good faith to maintain proper licensure;
    • Did not know or reasonably should not have known that he or she was not duly licensed at the time when performance of the act or contract commenced; and
    • Acted promptly and in good faith to reinstate his or her license upon learning it was invalid.
This bill:
  1. Revises the criteria for the court to consider when determining if a contractor substantially complied with the law to eliminate the requirement that a contractor did not know or reasonably should not have known that he or she was not duly licensed to, instead, provide that the contractor acted promptly and in good faith to remedy the failure to comply with the licensure requirements upon learning of the failure.
  2. Requires (rather than permi
    ts) a court to determine that a contractor is in compliance with the licensing requirements, if all of the conditions are met.
There is no fiscal impact for the CSLB. This was signed by the Governor August 30, 2016.
This bill requires that by January 1, 2019, the CSLB add a feature to its current online license check function that allows a consumer to search for a licensed contractor by either zip code or location.
There would be about a $100,000 impact in programming and website changes that CSLB will absorb over multiple fiscal years. The CSLB supported this bill because it addressed one of the CSLB's strategic goals. This was signed by the Governor on September 9, 2016.
This bill provides enhanced financial disclosures for consumers participating in a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Program.
Existing law provides authority for local governments to establish PACE Programs and to provide up-front financing to property owners to install renewable energy sources or energy efficiency improvements that are permanently fixed to their properties, which is repaid through the property tax system.
Existing law also provides that most PACE programs are implemented and administered under two statutory frameworks: AB 811 (Levine), Chapter 159, Statutes of 2008, amended the Improvement Act of 1911 to allow for voluntary contractual assessments to finance PACE projects, and SB 555 (Hancock), Chapter 493, Statutes of 2011, which amended the Mello-Roos Community Facilities District Act to allow for Mello-Roos special taxes (parcel taxes) to finance PACE projects.
This bill:
  1. Contains legislative findings and declarations, including that the consumer obligation to repay voluntary contractual assessments created by PACE is sometimes misunderstood and may affect consumers' ability to refinance their loan or sell their property.
  2. Prohibits a public agency from permitting a property owner's participation in any PACE program if any of the following apply:
    • Participation would result in the total amount of the annual property taxes and assessments to exceed 5 percent of the property's fair market value.
    • The property does not comply with specified conditions of existing law related to PACE financing (such as being current on property taxes, and that financing is for less than 15 percent of the value of property, etc.).
  3. Requires the property owner be provided with two copies of the right to cancel document.
There is no fiscal impact for the CSLB. This was signed by the Governor on September 25, 2016.
Existing law authorizes all boards to establish an inactive license category.
This bill:
  1. Authorizes boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) to establish,by regulation, a retired license category for persons who are not actively engaged in the practice of their profession.
  2. Provides that the regulations shall specify that a retired license shall be issued to a person with either an active license or an inactive license that was not placed on inactive status for disciplinary reasons and that the license holder shall not engage in any activity for which a license is required, unless the board, by regulation, specifies the criteria for a retired licensee to practice.
  3. Provides that an individual who holds a retired license shall not be required to renew the retired license.
  4. Requires boards to establish a fee for an inactive license, to cover the reasonable costs associated with issuance
  5. Specifies that to reinstate a retired license to an active license, the retired licensee must pay a fee; certify that he or she has not committed an act or crime constituting grounds for denial of a license; comply with any fingerprint requirement; and comply with any other requirements a board specifies by regulation.
  6. Authorizes a board to investigate the actions of any licensee, including a retired licensee.
The fiscal impact for the CSLB, will be approximately $55,000 to $80,000. The CSLB supported this bill because it does not impose a new requirement but creates a retired license category. The CSLB could determine on its own whether or not to exercise this authority and this may be something the CSLB would like to offer for the benefit of licensees. This bill was signed by the Governor on September 22, 2016.
Existing law establishes various licensing programs under the Department of Consumer Affairs.
This bill:
  1. Contains findings and declarations of the Legislature, including that the pathway out of poverty for millions of California residents is the attainment of industry valued "middle skill credentials," which is defined as a job requiring a certificate, associate's degree, or third-party credential that is less advanced than a bachelor's degree, but more advanced that a high school diploma.
  2. Requires DCA, upon request by the Chancellor's Office of the California Community Colleges (CCC), to provide, as applicable, the following information with respect to every licensee:
    • Name;
    • Federal employer identification number if the licensee is a partnership, or the licensee's individual taxpayer identification number of Social Security number for all other licensees;
    • Date of birth;
    • Type of license;
    • Effective date or license or a renewal; and
    • License expiration date.
  3. Specifies that the information is provided only to allow the CCC to measure employment outcomes of students who participate in career technical education programs offered by the CCC and recommend how these programs may be improved. The information cannot be used for any other purpose.
  4. Provides that DCA may only make the required information available to the extent that would comply with state and federal privacy laws.
  5. Allows DCA, by agreement, to condition or limit the information provided in order to protect privacy.
  6. Further provides that the information cannot be used in a way that permits third parties to personally identify individual licensees.
  7. Authorizes DCA or CCC to share the licensee data with a third party who contracts to perform the analysis, if the third party is required by contract to follow security requirements.
The fiscal impact for the CSLB would be a one-time cost for the programming / web services between $12,000 and $26,000. This bill was signed by the Governor on September 22, 2016.

This bill, as it pertains to the CSLB:
  1. Requires a licensee of CSLB to report to the Registrar in writing within 90 days the occurrence of any of the of the following events:
    • Conviction of any felony;
    • Conviction of any crime that is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, and duties of a licensed contractor.
  2. Requires the Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) to transmit copies of any citations or other actions involving or potentially involving a serious illness or injury, along with any other information it may possess regarding a contractor.
  3. By January 1, 2018, authorizes CSLB to enter into an inter agency agreement with any other state or local agency it deems to be in possession of any information relevant to its priority to protect the public.
  4. By January 1, 2018, requires CSLB to report to the Legislature the results of a study to determine if its ability to protect the public would be enhanced by regulations requiring licensees to report judgments, arbitration awards against them, or settlement payments of claims for construction defects they have made in excess of a certain amount to be determined by CSLB.
  5. Specifies that CSLB shall first consult with licensees, insurers, and consumers during report development.
  6. Further provides that the study shall include:
    • Criteria used by insurers or others to differentiate between settlements that are for nuisance value and those that are not;
    • Whether settlement information or other information can help identify licensees who may by subject to an enforcement action;
    • If there is a way to separate subcontractors from general contractors when identifying licensees who may be subject to enforcement action;
    • If reporting should be limited to settlements resulting from construction defects that resulted in death or injury; and
    • The practice of other boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs, and any other reasonable criteria.
  7. Provides that any records CSLB obtains during the course of implementing the study requirements that are exempt from disclosure under the Public Records Act shall remain exempt from disclosure.
  8. Requires the California Building Standards Commission (CBSC) to convene a working group to investigate existing building standards associated with the construction, inspection and maintenance of exterior elevated elements, and to report its findings and recommendations to the Legislature by January 1, 2018.
The work called for in this bill could not be absorbed by the CSLB and would require two (2) full-time Enforcement Representatives and one (1) full-time Staff Services Analyst with total costs about $288,000. The bill was signed by the Governor on September 15, 2016.
Existing Law:
  1. Requires that every operator of a subsurface installation (except CalTrans)become a member of, participate in, and fund a regional notification center.
  2. Requires a person planning any excavation to contact the appropriate notification center before work begins.
  3. Provides that a willful or deliberate violation of the regional notification system requirements by a licensee of the Contractors State License Board (CSLB)constitutes a cause for disciplinary action by CSLB.
This Bill:
  1. Defines several terms, including "working day" for the purposes of determining excavation start date and time as a weekday Monday through Friday, from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., except for federal and state holidays, or as otherwise posted on the Internet website of the regional notification center.
  2. Requires an excavator planning an excavation to first delineate the area to be excavated, before notifying the appropriate regional notification center.
  3. Further requires an operator to indicate with an "A" inside a circle the presence of any abandoned subsurface installations, if known, within the delineated area.
  4. Provides that if an operator knows that it has a subsurface installation embedded or partially embedded in the pavement that is not visible from the surface, the operator shall contact the excavator before pavement removal to communicate and determine a plan of action.
  5. Authorizes an excavator to use power excavation tools to expose subsurface installations within the tolerance zone, after first using hand tools.
  6. Requires an excavator to presume that all subsurface installations are active, and to use the same care around subsurface installations that may be inactive as would be used around active installations.
  7. Requires an excavator to call 911 upon discovering or causing damage to either of the following:
    • A natural gas or hazardous liquid pipeline subsurface installation in which the same results in the escape of any flammable, toxic, or corrosive gas or liquid;
    • A high priority subsurface installation of any kind.
  8. Provides that dig alert requirements can be enforced, following a recommendation by the Excavation Board, established by this bill, as follows:
    • CSLB, on contractors and telephone corporations when acting as a contractor. (Note: CSLB would fine contractors according to the provisions of Government Code Section 4216.6, which provides for penalties between no more than $10,000 for a negligent violation, to no more than $50,000 for willful violation. The revenue from any fines resulting from this authority would go to the Excavation Board, not CSLB).
    • The Public Utilities Commission (PUC), on gas and electrical corporations, and water corporations.
    • The Office of the State Fire Marshal, for operators of hazardous liquid pipeline facilities.
  9. Provides that an excavator who damages a subsurface installation because of inaccurate marking shall not be liable for damages.
  10. Beginning November 1, 2017, authorizes an excavator to request a continual excavation ticket for an area of continual excavation, in lieu of the regular ticket process. Further defines the process, and provides that a continual excavation ticket is valid for one year for issuance, and may be renewed.
  11. Creates the California Underground Facilities Safe Excavation Advisory Board (Excavation Board), under the Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) and assisted by OSFM's staff.
  12. Provides that the Excavation Board may obtain funding for its operational expenses from:
    • Federal or state grant;
    • A fee charged to members of the regional notification centers, not to exceed the reasonable regulatory cost to enforce this bill; and
    • Any other source.
    • Specifies that the Excavation Board shall not charge a fee to a person for notifying the regional notification center to obtain or renew a ticket.
  13. Requires the Excavation Board to annually convene a meeting for the following purposes:
    • To understand the existing needs for education and outreach, including to those groups with the highest awareness, including homeowners;
    • To facilitate discussion on how to coordinate existing education and outreach efforts with state and local agencies, California operators, regional notification centers, and trade associations that fund outreach and education programs that encourage safe excavation practices; and
    • To determine the areas in which additional education and outreach efforts may be targeted.
  14. Requires the Excavation Board to develop standards relevant to safety practices in excavating around subsurface installations and procedures and guidance in encouraging those practices. Provides that the standards shall address all of the following:
    • Evidence necessary to demonstrate compliance with the law; and
    • What constitutes reasonable care in grading activities on road shoulders and dirt roads which may include standards for potholing.
  15. Beginning January 1, 2018, requires the Excavation Board to investigate possible violations of the law, including complaints from affected parties and members of the public.
  16. Provides that if the Excavation Board finds a probable violation after completing an investigation, it may send the results and any recommended penalty to the agency with jurisdiction over the action.
  17. Specifies that sanctions shall be graduated and may include notification and information letters, direction to attend relevant education, and financial penalties.
  18. Requires the Excavation Board to consider the following when assessing a penalty:
    • The type of violation and its gravity;
    • The degree of culpability;
    • The operator's or excavator's history of violations;
    • The operator's or excavator's history of work conducted without violations; and
    • The efforts taken by the violator to prevent violation and, once the consequences occurred, the efforts taken to mitigate the safety consequences of the violation.
  19. For an investigation of a violation regarding the delineating and tolerance zone requirements, prohibits a complainant from seeking action in court for damages until the investigation is complete, or for at least six months after the investigation begins, whichever occurs first.
  20. If a complainant files an action or damages based upon these requirements, after the completion of an investigation in which the person was found to have not violated the requirements, the complainant shall also notify the Board when the action is filed.
  21. Requires the Board to annually report to the Legislature and Governor.
This will have a substantial fiscal impact for the CSLB. The bill was signed by the Governor on September 28, 2016.
This bill makes changes and/or raises fees for several boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA). This contains the same language to provide for an increase in the statutory fee caps as those contained in AB 2286, which is a CSLB sponsored bill. Because of this, the CSLB supported this bill. Without an increase in fees, the CSLB's License Fund will be in a deficit by the end of the fiscal year 2017-18. This bill was signed by the Governor on September 29, 2016.
Existing law requires CSLB to disclose to the public all complaints that have been referred for accusation or for investigation after a determination that a probable violation has occurred.
This bill provides that this required disclosure also appear on the license record of any other license that lists a qualifier also listed on the personnel of record of the license that received the citation.
The CSLB sponsored and supported this bill which will further the CSLB's goal to disclose information to consumers regarding contractors that have been disciplined. There is no fiscal impact to the CSLB. This will was signed by the Governor on August 19, 2016.
Existing Law:
  1. Requires boards within the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) to waive the renewal fees and other related renewal requirements for any licensee called to active military duty.
  2. Requires DCA boards to ask on all applications if the applicant is currently or has previously served in the military.
  3. Beginning July 1, 2016, requires boards to expedite the initial license process for applicants who previously served in the military and were actively discharged from service.
This bill requires DCA boards to modify their license application to advise veteran applicants about their ability to apply military experience and training towards licensure requirements.
The fiscal impact for the CSLB would be minor and absorbable. This bill was signed by the Governor on August 22, 2016.
As it pertains to the Contractors State License Board (CSLB), this bill:
  1. Eliminates the provision of existing law that voids an application after an applicant has failed to reschedule an exam within 90 days of cancellation, or twice failed to appear for an exam.
  2. Provides that a contractor must be licensed for two years, rather than the current requirement of five years, in order to be eligible for a blanket performance and payment bond.
There is no fiscal impact for the CSLB and it was supported. The Governor signed this bill on September 25, 2016.

Legislative Objectives:
  1. Present draft proposal to reorganize Contractors' State License Law - Important - Target December 2016 - Closely examine and reorganize current law to create a more logical flow and be more user-friendly; cleanup and clarifying language as needed - Under review by staff - postpone target date to March 2017.
  2. Research increased penalties for predatory business practices, misrepresentation of services, or need of services - Important - Target March 2017 - In conjunction with Enforcement division, examine appropriateness of existing penalties in statute and regulation and if there is a need for changes - The need for an increase in civil penalties and other enforcement strategies to combat predatory service and repair scam practices was discussed at the Board meeting.
  3. Develop and implement regulatory proposal to formalize experience requirements criteria - Essential - Target January 2018 - In conjunction with Licensing division, clarify the accepted verifiable experience requirements necessary for the licensure to help ensure that qualified applicants are able to test for a license - Plan to initiate rulemaking in January 2018, will convene a working group with Licensing division staff later this year.
  4. Further define examination waiver criteria - Important - Target January 2018 - In conjunction with Licensing division, thoroughly review statutory waiver authority and develop regulations to clarify examination waiver criteria, possible including methods to prevent fraudulent submissions - Researching statutory and regulatory authority in relation to waivers; will bring to the Legislative Committee in 2017.
  5. Research alternative fee structures - Beneficial - Target January 2018 - In conjunction with Enforcement division, conduct cost/benefit analyses of Enforcement activities and Enforcement-based fees, including citations; consider need for statutory and/or regulatory revisions - As an alternative cost savings measure, staff is presenting a legislative proposal to create a Letter of Admonishment.
  6. Review Home Improvement Contract Provisions - Important - Target June 2018 - Identify ways to simplify and improve clarity of provisions in Business and Professions Code section 7159 - In process, will present any recommended changes with 2017 legislative proposals.
  7. Increase fees - Essential - Target July 2018 - Increase statutory authority and limits; follow-up with regulations for future increases within statutory limits -Implementation on July 1, 2017.
  8. Track and update Board on any legislation seeking to modify Business and Professions Code section 7031 - Beneficial - Target Ongoing - Keep Board members and interested stakeholders updated on potential changes to code section relating to court actions for recovery of compensation in relation to unlicensed contractors - AB 1793 was signed by the Governor; no other pending legislation on this subject.

The Public Affairs Office (PAO) is responsible for media, industry, licensee, and consumer relations and outreach.
The Public Affairs Office is staffed with six full-time positions and one part-time Student Assistant. Currently there is one vacancy for an Information Officer I position.
CSLB Website
The average percentage of new users from November 2015 to April 2016 was 23.07%. The average from May 2016 to October 2016 went up to 32.16%. The majority of all users use a desktop as opposed to Mobile or tablet. Forms and Applications are the most viewed pages.
Public Meetings
The Board and Committee meetings continue to be broadcast as live webcasts. The Board meeting in Monterrey was the first time the meeting was streamed via YouTube Live instead of Ustream. YouTube Live sends notifications to subscribers when the channel is streaming live video. This increased the number of live viewers by approximately 318%!

Social Media
CSLB continues to use a variety of infographics to post information and engage with their audience on their social media pages. The use of infographics has increased the social media engagement by 67.5% in comparison to posts without graphics.
The CSLB is continuing to use Instagram as a tool to connect with followers, and will continue to expand the use of social media platforms to communicate with the public in as many ways as possible.
Facebook Growth
From October 20, 2016 to November 16, 2016, CSLB had reached 9,998 people on its Facebook page. The most viewed post was California Blitz.
Twitter Growth
Twitter has now grown to 2,123 followers. Tweets receive an average of 22.6 views per month and the top tweet was California Blitz.
Periscope Growth
The CSLB uses Periscope to stream live videos during outreach events. The link is available within 24 hours of the event. Viewers can also send comments and questions during the broadcast.
YouTube Growth
The YouTube page was created in 2009. Since that time, the CSLB has a total of 376,432 views.
Flickr Growth
The CSLB is expanding its Flickr portfolio of photos. Public Affairs Office staff uploads and posts high-resolution photos. Professional media and industry followers can download photos of their choosing. As of November 16, 2016, CSLB has 248 photos available for download.
LinkedIn Growth
Since LinkedIn can increase exposure and act as an effective recruiting tool to attract quality employees for CSLB positions, the Public Affairs office actively posts current job vacancies here.
Email Alert Feature
The Public Affairs Office continues to publicize a website feature launched in May of 2010, which allows people to subscribe to their choice of four types of CSLB email alerts:
  • California Licensed Contractor newsletters
  • News Releases / Consumer Alerts
  • Industry Bulletins
  • Public Meeting Notices / Agendas
A new category was added on May 16, 2016:
  • CSLB Job Openings
The CSLB sends out an email containing all the current job openings on a weekly basis. The total subscriber database is at 26,776, which includes 838 new accounts since the September Board meeting.

Media Calls
The CSLB continues to respond to media inquiries including newspaper, radio, magazine, television outlets and a variety of online sources. There were 43 media inquiries between August 29, 2016, and November 15, 2016.
News Releases
News releases were aggressively distributed to the media, especially to publicize enforcement actions and undercover sting operations. Between August 26, 2016, and November 15, 2016, there were eight news releases distributed.
California Licensed Contractor Newsletter
The summer 2016 edition of the quarterly newsletter, California Licensed Contractor, was release online in late August. The next edition was due for November/December 2016. This publication targets nearly 300,000 licensees. Since it is distributed online, it saves a considerable amount on printing and mailing costs.
Industry Bulletins
The Public Affairs Office distributes industry bulletins to alert industry members to important and interesting news. Bulletins are sent via email on an as-needed basis to more than 7,100 individuals and groups, including those who have signed-up to receive the bulletins via CSLB's Email Alert system. Between August 26, 2016, and October 19, 2016, they distributed two industry bulletins.
  • Asbestos: A Contractor's Guide and Open Book Exam; and
  • 10 Tips Cards (English/Spanish)
In Production
  • Law & Reference Book (2017 Edition);
  • Mandatory Arbitration Program Guide;
  • Voluntary Arbitration Program Guide;
  • New Consumer Guide;
  • A Homeowner's Guide to Preventing Mechanic's Liens;
  • Tips for Hiring a Roofing Contractor;
  • Choosing the Right Landscaper; and
  • What is a Stop Order?
In Development
  • New Contractor Guide; and
  • Building Official Information Guide
Foreign Outreach
A delegation from China visited the CSLB in Norwalk on November 14, 2016. The group was interested in learning how to better regulate their construction industry. They were provided an overview of the CSLB's licensing requirements as well as legislative and enforcement processes.
Disaster Outreach
A town hall meeting held on October 6, 2016, for victims of the Loma Wildfire in Santa Cruz County was provided with materials from the Public Affairs Office for distribution.
Senior Scam Stopper Seminars
Six Senior Scam Stopper seminars were conducted or scheduled to be conducted between the October, 2016, and December, 2016, bringing the total for 2016 up to 98 seminars.
Consumer Scam Stopper Seminars
There were 72 Consumer Scam Stopper seminars conducted in 2016. Twenty of those occurred between October 2016, and December 2016.
CSLB's Public Affairs Office utilizes a two-year communications plan to help direct its outreach and education efforts. The plan is important as it helps guarantee the Board and its staff provides relevant, accurate, and consistent information to its various stakeholders, including consumers, licensees, and the construction industry. The previous CSLB Communications Plan was approved by the Board at its September 23, 2014 meeting.

The 2017-2019 CSLB Communications Plan was approved by the Public Affairs committee on November 3, 2016, and is presented to the full Board for approval.
This plan consists of:
  • The CSLB's Purpose;
  • CSLB Mission Statement;
  • Public Affairs Office Mission Statement;
  • Staff and Financial Resources;
  • Guiding Principles;
  • Target Audiences;
  • Communication Messages;
  • Communication Channels;
  • Short-Term Goals;
  • Long-Term Goals;
  • Timetable and Priorities; and
  • Tasks to Measure Success

Public Affairs Objectives:
  1. Complete flagship consumer publication - Essential - Target September 2016 - Update of
    What You Should Know Before You Hire a Licensed Contractor booklet - Delayed pending hiring of new publications coordinator; new target: March 2017
  2. Complete flagship contractor publication - Essential - Target November 2016 - Creation of new publication targeted toward journeymen, applicants, and licensees - Delayed pending hiring of new publications coordinator; new target: June 2017
  3. Update Communications Plan for 2017-2019 - Essential - Target December 2016 - Formal guideline that provides overview of Public Affairs objectives, goals, audiences, tools, and timetables to reach those audiences, and plans to evaluate results - On-target. Pending full Board approval.
  4. Develop solar outreach material - Important - Target March 2017 - In conjunction with Enforcement and Information Technology divisions, create portal on CSLB website to link consumers to most reliable solar-related information, supplemented by newly created CSLB material - On-Target. Currently developing links and other information.
  5. Develop orientation videos for new staff / board members - Important - Target December 2017 - Produce series of videos to be used as part of efforts to introduce staff and Board members to CSLB - Not started yet.
  6. Develop schedule for Opt-In, "Find a Contractor" and website feature - Essential - Target June 2018 - Web-based feature that enables consumers to get a list of available licensed contractors in specific license classifications for specific geographic locations - Not started yet. AB 2486 was enrolled on August 22, 2016.
  7. Expand Consumer Scam Stopper Outreach program - Beneficial - Target June 2018 - Look for opportunities to expand CSLB's face-to-face outreach to groups other than seniors - Currently developing possible options.
Fiscal year 2015-2016, saw a total of 39,973 applications. Of those, 23,310 applications were processed and licenses issued, 11,342 applications voided, and 5,321 applications remain pending.
January 1, 2013, started the Workers' Compensation Re-certification process. Now, an active contractor with a current exemption for workers' compensation insurance with the CSLB needs to provide a current and valid Certificate of Workers' Compensation Insurance or a Certificate of Self-Insurance at the time of license renewal
The Criminal Background Unit has been conducting fingerprinting for all applicants for a CSLB license; this includes each officer, partner, owner and responsible managing employee as well as home improvement salespersons since January 1, 2005. Since the start of Fiscal Year 2011-2012, the fingerprint program has received 132,401 transmittals from the Department of Justice with approximately 24,904 of those containing criminal conviction records. Of those, 286 applications have been denied, 492 have been issued probationary licenses, and 155 of the denied applicants appealed their denials.
The CSLB is required by law to investigate a minimum of 3% of applications received to review applicants' claims of work experience. January of 2013 began the process of streamlining the application process as well as reducing the time and expense of formal investigations by combining the work experience verification process w
ith the standard application review. In instances when the CSLB is not able to confirm the experience, three options are offered to the applicant:
  • Identify a new qualifier who possesses the required work experience;
  • Withdraw the application and reapply when the necessary work experience has been gained; or
  • Request a formal investigation.
Since implementation, the Experience Verification Unit has received 3,553 applications. For the past 12 months, 271 applications have been denied; 28 appealed and 387 verified for continued processing; 94 withdrawn.
LIC Support Services
CSLB's Licensing Information Center is the first point of contact for applicants, consumers, licensees, and governmental agencies needing information relative to licensing laws, hiring a contractor, licensing application information, and the status of an application. The LIC receives, on average, 13,000 calls monthly. Staff that respond to calls must have knowledge of all licensing transaction processes in order to assist callers with correct and complete information.
Judgment Unit staff process all outstanding liabilities, judgments, and payment of claims reported to CSLB by licensees, consumers, attorneys, credit recovery firms, bonding companies, CSLB's Enforcement division, and other governmental agencies. In addition, the Judgment Unit processes all documentation and correspondence related to resolving issues such as, satisfactions, payment plans, bankruptcies, accords, motions to vacate, etc.
The Testing division's EAU administers CSLB's 46 examinations at eight computer-based test centers. Most test centers are allocated two full-time test monitor positions, with part-time proctors filling in as needed. Test monitors also respond to all interactive voice response (IVR) messages received by CSLB that are related to testing.
Test Center Status
There are test centers in Sacramento, Berkeley, San Jose, Fresno, Oxnard, Norwalk, San Bernardino and San Diego.
Examination Administration Unit Staffing
The Examination Administration Unit currently has one vacancy for an Associate Governmental Program Analyst.
The Testing division's EDU ensures that CSLB's 46 examinations are written, maintained, and updated in accordance with testing standards, guidelines, and CSLB regulations.
Occupational Analysis and Examination Development Workload
There are two phases required to maintain a licensure examination. Occupational analysis, which determines what information is relevant to each contractor classification. Examination development involves reviewing and revising the existing test questions, writing new test questions, and determining the passing score for examinations from that point forward. These cycles must be completed every five to seven years for each examination.
Three new examination were released in September 2016, the C-33 Painting and Decorating; the C-17 Glazing; and the Asbestos Certification.
Occupational analysis is currently in progress for C-2 Insulation and Acoustical; C-4 Boiler, Hot Water Heating, and Steam Fitting; C-12 Earthwork and Paving; C-46 Solar; and HAZ Hazardous Substance Removal.
New examinations are in progress for the C-7 Low Voltage Systems; C-16 Fire Protection; C-27 Landscaping; C-32 Parking and Highway Improvement; C-53 Swimming Pool; C-54 Ceramic and Mosaic Tile; and Law and Business.
Examination Development Unit Staffing
Examination Development Unit has one vacancy for a Personnel Selection Consultant I.
Ongoing Consumer Satisfaction Survey
There is an ongoing survey of consumers whose complaint cases have been closed which is designed to assess overall satisfaction with the Enforcement Division's handling of complaints.
Civil Service Examinations
The Examination Development Unit also works on civil service classification examinations that are used at the CSLB. The Enforcement Representative I examination will be offered in January 2017.
This item is intended to provide the Board an overview of the findings and recommendations of the Little Hoover Commission's (Commission) report, "Jobs for Californians: Strategies to Ease Occupational Licensing Barriers." A link to the full report is available on the Board meeting agenda posted on the CSLB website.
The Licensing Committee will review the Commission's recommendations and consider whether or not to propose any changes to current policies and procedures.
Licensing & Testing Objectives:
  1. Revise application package and related outreach material - Essential - Target January 2017 - In conjunction with Public Affairs, update package of application materials to decrease confusion, increase compliance, and reduce the time to issue new licenses - Completed update of application materials; awaiting IT programming
  2. Create exam development presentation for future Board meetings - Important - Target September 2016 - Help current and future Board members, as well as the public, better understand CSLB's computerized license testing process - Completed
  3. Identify specific criteria for Examination Waiver and Application Review - Beneficial - Target September 2016 - In conjunction with Enforcement division, develop criteria to review waiver applications that better identifies potentially fraudulent submissions - Requires statutory change
  4. Research and implement measures to reduce initial application processing times - Essential - Target December 2016 - In connection with Objective 1, examine current processes, procedures, staffing levels, and other issues to identify ways to speed up the time it takes to issue new licenses - Partially completed; awaiting IT programming
  5. Conduct comparative study of pass/fail rates of contractor license exams in other states - Important - Target March 2017 - Education and inform Board members and the public about how California pass/fail rates compare with other states - Partially completed; awaiting IT programming
  6. Develop online smart application content to reduce application return for correction rates - Essential - Target January 2017 - In conjunction with Information Technology division, develop and implement online application to ensure applicants provide accurate and all necessary information - Partially completed
  7. Research handyman exemption - Beneficial - Target January 2018 - Determine if current handyperson exemption should be modified, or if a new license type should be developed to better protect consumers - Delayed pending 2017 update to 2016-18 Strategic Plan Objectives.
The manageable level of pending complaints for the current CSLB Enforcement staff is 3,420. November 2016, saw a pending case load of 3,322.
The optimal case load for Consumer Service Representatives is 1,320. November 2016, saw 1,331 complaints assigned to the Consumer Service Representatives.
The optimal case load for Enforcement Representatives is 35 cases per Enforcement Representative. The CSLB has 60 Enforcement Representatives with a combined optimal capacity of 2,100 open complaints. As of November 2016, there were 1,991 cases assigned to Enforcement Representatives.
The investigative centers have seen financial settlement amounts of over $5.2 million in 2016. The intake mediation centers saved just over $10 million in financial settlement amounts for 2016.
Investigation of Consumer Complaints
The Board's goal of 10 complaint closures per month for Enforcement Representatives has consistently been met during 2016. They are also currently managing an ongoing case load of approximately 35 cases per Enforcement Representative. Local prosecutors have been referred 29% of 1,763 legal actions. The goal is for each Enforcement Representative to carry between 30 and 40 pending cases. The statewide average was 31 cases as of November 2016.
Statewide Investigative Fraud Team Statistics
CSLB has established a Statewide Investigative Fraud Team (SWIFT) comprised of non-sworn Enforcement Representatives (ERs). SWIFT primarily enforces license and workers' compensation insurance requirements at active job sites and performs undercover sting operations, targeting unlicensed persons who have active warrants or who solicit construction contracts. From January 1, 2016 through October 31, 2016, SWIFT conducted 70 sting operations and 200 sweep days in various counties.
Legal Action Closures
From January 1, 2016, through October 31, 2016, SWIFT closed 2,839 cases as a result of stings, sweeps and leads. Of those, 1,354 resulted in an administrative or criminal legal action.
From January 1, 2016, through October 31, 2016, SWIFT issued 608 licensee and non-licensee citations and assessed $526,880 in civil citation penalties.
Stop Orders
A Stop Order is a legal demand to cease all employee labor at a job site due to workers' compensation violations until an appropriate policy is obtained and the CSLB notified. Failure of a contractor to comply with a Stop Order constitutes a misdemeanor criminal offense, punishable by up to 60 days in county jail or by a fine of up to $10,000 or both.
From January 1, 2016, through October 31, 2016, SWIFT issued 383 Stop Orders to licensed and unlicensed individuals who use employee labor without having a valid workers' compensation policy.
Labor Enforcement Strike Force (LETF)
Established in January 2012, the Labor Enforcement Task Force (LETF) combats the underground economy in California to create an environment where legitimate businesses can thrive. Members of the Task Force include CSLB, the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) Division of Labor Standards and Enforcement, the DIR Division of Occupational Health and Safety, and the Employment Development Department. The Task Force aims to:
  • Ensure that workers receive proper payment of wages and are provided a safe work environment;
  • Ensure that California receives all employment taxes, fees, and penalties due from employers;
  • Eliminate unfair business competition by leveling the playing field; and
  • Make efficient use of state and federal resources in carrying out the mission of the LETF.
During Fiscal Year 2015-16 there were 1,083 businesses inspected, 83% which were out of compliance for a total initial assessment of almost $8.6 million.
In response to identified needs and staff requests, the Enforcement division continues to expand the offerings in its highly successful training program. The Enforcement division's training coordinator has partnered with subject matter experts from within and outside CSLB to offer courses that have received uniformly positive reviews from attending staff.
Over the next year, there will be the following trainings:
  • SWIFT sting training;
  • SWIFT vehicle surveillance training;
  • Investigation Center Advanced Course II training;
  • CSLB Enforcement Academy; and
  • Safety and security training.
Enforcement Prepares Curriculum for New "Career Development" Class
The Enforcement division is offering a new class to assist staff with developing and meeting career objectives. This class will provide staff with vital keys to become highly competitive candidates when interviewing for new positions or during the promotional process. It will also examine ways to enhance job knowledge and skills within CSLB to assist staff in preparing for future career choices. Managers from CSLB Enforcement, Personnel, and Quality Assurance will teach the class, which be held in Norwalk on December 12, 2016. A Sacramento session is planned for December 19. Over 60 Enforcement division employees have already registered.
  • Ongoing Scrutiny of the Service and Repair Industry
  • Senior Homeowner Stands Her Ground on Squeaking Floors
  • Enforcement Representative Helps Broker $21,745 Settlement for Consumer
  • Update on Contracting Duo that Harms Two Elderly Victims
  • Repeat Unlicensed and Unregistered Salesperson Sentenced to 90 Days in Jail
  • Licensed Family Members Pledge to Bring Unlicensed Relative to Justice
  • Unlicensed Duo Seeks "RMO" in Craigslist Advertisement
  • Enforcement Representative Lands Criminal Case from Jailhouse Interview
  • Licensee Pleads Guilty to Elder Abuse
  • Effective Sweep Targeting Results in 61 Enforcement Actions
  • 35 Legal Actions Issued Over Two-Day Undercover Operation
  • SWIFT Targets Wanted Felons and Nets 42 Unlicensed Contractors
  • Statewide SWIFT Sweeps Generate 39 Legal Actions
The Enforcement division's 2016-2018 Strategic Plan includes developing strategies to reduce solar industry fraud through (a) Outreach, (b) Education, and (c) Enforcement Strategies.
There have been progressively more solar complaints each year. In 2015, there were 279 and as of July 2016, there were 188. Additionally, the number of C-46 licenses issued also continues to grow.
The Enforcement division is currently working on how to reduce the solar industry fraud.
The following describes the Enforcement division's progress toward the reduction of solar industry fraud in each of these three areas. Also, in response to a September 2016 request from the Board, an update on emerging solar technologies and solar complaint trends is included.
The service and repair industry is unique among businesses licensed by the CSLB. This is in part due to the urgency to perform repair work and the ability of a service and repair contractor to "upsell" unnecessary or overpriced construction that exceeds the service and repair $750 limit and that requires a home improvement contract, salesperson registration, and a three-day right to cancel.
A consumer with a need for a service and repair contractor is more likely than someone seeking other construction services to use the Internet or classified directory to call for service, which results in a greater likelihood of consumer contact with unregistered salespersons, unneeded services, and high-pressure sales tactics.
To address these concerns, the CSLB Enforcement division established the Service and Repair Taskforce in 2015. Taskforce activities to inform, educate, and enforce existing laws have achieved a 19 percent complaint reduction, i.e. complaints received relating to C-20 (Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning) and C-36 (Plumbing) contractors have decreased monthly on average from 118 in 2015 to 95 in 2016.
The following trends within the service and repair industry remain a concern:
  • Contractors operating under multiple name styles
  • False advertising
  • High-pressure sales tactics
  • Home improvement contract violations
  • Failure to comply with the three-day right to cancel requirements for service and repair contracts that exceed $750
  • Issues with electronic signatures on contracts
The task force plans to prioritize complaints by violation type, utilize staff assignment, develop policy and procedure, partner with others in the industry and government entities in order to handle these deceptive tactics.
Enforcement Objectives:
  1. Implement Memorandum of Understanding with Labor Commissioner's Office - Beneficial - Target July 2016, Create partnership to engage and inform Labor Commissioner's Office staff about provisions and process for directing referrals to CSLB - June 13 and 15, 2016, Enforcement staff met with Labor Commissioner's staff to review MOU and to provide training; partnering efforts are ongoing.
  2. Update Civil Penalties Assessments - Essential - Target September 2016 - Review penalty guidelines to determine if they have kept up with inflation and consumer protection requirements - Increasing civil penalties was included in the AG cost reduction expenditure plan adopted by the Board on Jun 23, 2016
  3. Develop Strategies to Reduce Solar Industry Fraud - Essential - Target December 2016 - Develop outreach, education, and enforcement tactics to address deceptive tactics in solar industry - A consumer fact sheet and enforcement strategies have been developed; solar enforcement strategies were discussed at the October 28, 2016, Enforcement Committee meeting
  4. Formalize Strategy to identify licensee miscues of workers' compensation insurance requirement exemption - Essential - Target March 2017 - In conjunction with Public Affairs Office, develop education and enforcement program targeted at licensees who employ workers while having workers' compensation exemption on-file with the CSLB - An update regarding the planning and implementation of workers' compensation enforcement strategies was provided at the October 28, 2016, Enforcement Committee meeting.
  5. Reduce Legal Action Expenditures while not compromising consumer protection - Essential - Target July 2017 - Develop partnerships with prosecutors and other government agencies to leverage resources, as well as a strike force to achieve greater legal action settlements - A legal action expenditure reduction plan was reviewed, discussed, and adopted by the Board June 23, 2016.
  6. Expand proactive enforcement targets - Beneficial - Target July 2017 - Develop strategies and partnerships to include public work projects and larger contractors in proactive enforcement efforts - SWIFT staff have increased targeting of unlicensed contractors on larger projects; Peace Officers now assist with the identification of high profile targets.
Registrar, Cindi Christenson, discussed the chaptered bill SB 66. This new law requires DCA to provide specified information on all licensees, including Social Security numbers upon request of the California Community Colleges. The Registrar indicates that licensee information will be protected.
The recruitment of a new Deputy Chief Registrar will be on hold until the new Registrar is in office.
The Board meeting for March has been moved from San Diego to Sacramento. The date is March 14, 2017. In addition, board members have been asked to hold March 13, 2017, open as well. This may be a two day meeting.
During the first quarter of Fiscal Yearl 2016-17, CSLB personnel staff completed 29 recruitment transactions - 8 new employees from other State agencies, 2 employees new to State service, 1 accepted a training and development assignment, 5 transferred units, and 13 promoted within the CSLB.
Several examinations are offered throughout the year in for varies positions including the enforcement, information technology, licensing and testing divisions as well as general staff positions.
San Bernardino - Work will commence once the final plans are approved from the State Fire Marshal. Project completion estimated in February, 2017.
Norwalk - A final walk-through was completed mid-October, 2016. A few minor details are being finalized then this project is complete.
San Diego - The Department of General Service space planner is preparing new floor plans for the CSLB to approve. The projected completion date is March, 2017.
Sacramento Headquarters - The Department of General Services space planner is currently working with CSLB staff to identify the upgrades and any specifications for inclusion in the floor plans. Once completed, plans will be submitted for CSLB approval.
Oxnard - The program datasheet has been completed to identify the needs of the office, which includes staff projections, required office space, and any requested modifications. The Department of General Services space planner is preparing new floor plans for approval by CSLB. The project is projected to be completed by May, 2017.
San Francisco - The Department of General Services space planner, Real Estate Officer, Department of Consumer Affairs, and CSLB staff conducted a site visit to identify the necessary upgrades/modifications. Requested changes involve minor modifications, such as paint touch-up, a new sink and garbage disposal, new cabinets, and an electrical vehicle charging station. The Department of General Services planner is working on the plans for CSLB's approval. The project is projected to be completed by September, 2018.
Valencia - The program datasheet has been completed to identify the needs of the office, which includes staff projections, required office space, and any requested modifications. The Department of General Services space planner is preparing new floor plans for CSLB approval, which will include a second exit door. The project is projected to be completed by April, 2018.
Fresno - The Leasing Officer is negotiating the lease and requesting a few minor changes, which include, touch-up paint, installation of plates on all doors, corner guards throughout the office, an exhaust fan in the breakroom, and installation of storage cubes to hold testing candidates' personal items during examinations. The project is projected to be completed by September, 2018.
San Jose - An air-conditioning unit will be installed in the server/telecom room of the office. This is a state building and Department of General Services will send out bids for this unit. The project is projected to be completed by January 2017.
Contracts and Procurement
Contracts in Process:
  • One-year renewal for Statewide Arbitration Services;
  • Printing services for California Contractors License & Law Reference Book;
  • Shredding services for the Bakersfield office;
  • Debt collection services for the citation program; and
  • March 2017 Board meeting.
Procurements in Process:
  • Polo shirts for Enforcement division staff;
  • Field vests for Enforcement division staff;
  • Camera equipment for the Public Affairs Office;
  • Two fax machines for the Norwalk office;
  • Additional access cards for the Berkeley office; and
  • Forklift for the warehouse.
Executed Contracts/Procurement:
  • New batteries for large UPS machine;
  • Additional access key cards for the Norwalk and Sacramento offices;
  • Renewal of California Highway Patrol contract ot provide security services for various meetings and testing offices;
  • Renewal of shredding contract for various field offices;
  • Shredding services for Sacramento headquarters; and
  • Amended 10 copier contracts to reflect increased usage.
Fleet Management
CSLB submitted the 2015-16 Fiscal Year Fleet Acquisition Plan to the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA), which included a request for eleven (11) replacement vehicles:
  • Four Ford Fusion Hybrids (1-San Diego IC, 2-Valencia IC, 1-West Covina IC)
  • Five Chevrolet Impalas (1-Fresno SWIFT, 2-Norwalk SWIFT, 2-Sacramento SWIFT)
  • One Chevrolet Silverado Truck (1-Sacramento IC North)
  • One Nissan Leaf (1-Sacramento SWIFT)
SWIFT received the five Chevrolet Impalas; the remaining six vehicles should be delivered within the next few months.
Emergency Preparedness
CSLB's Emergency Response Team held its mandatory fourth quarter training on November 7, 2016.
Administrative Objectives:
  1. Partner with DCA to Implement Live Captioning Contract - Essential - Target December 2016 - Increase accessibility to public meetings and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act - Completed - using DCA-wide contract for live captioning service.
  2. Develop Succession Planning, Mentoring, and Upward Mobility Program for Staff - Essential - Target June 2017 - Assess job requirements and skills of existing employees and seek to fill the gaps between needs and skills with targeted training and development activities - On track. Currently redesigning and preparing for a re-launch of an expanded version of the previously successful CSLB Career Counseling Program.
  3. Assess / Enhance Security and Safety Procedures for All CSLB Facilities - Important - Target June 2017 - Examine the security and safety of all CSLB facilities to identify and enhance areas that require improvements - On track. Currently focusing on locations with upcoming lease renewals and determining physical security needs so that modifications can be included in the lease renewal agreements
  4. Evaluate Enforcement Division Staffing Levels - Beneficial - Target September 2017 - Determine if additional personnel are needed to meet CSLB Enforcement division goals - On track. Personnel Office Manager meeting with Enforcement division management to identify staffing issues and recruitment efforts on a bi-weekly basis.
  5. Enhance onboarding and orientation program for new staff, managers and Board members - Important - Target December 2017 - Increase communication and foster cohesive mission-orientated working culture - On track. Currently researching best practices of other organizations and tailoring them to CSLB needs
  6. Research and implement a special investigator classification services - Essential - Target June 2018 - Examine feasibility of establishing new classification to improve recruitment and retention of Enforcement staff - On track. Working closely with DCA Office of Human Resources to research the feasibility and complexity of this issue.
  7. Pursue salary differentials in regions with higher living costs - Essential - Target June 2018 - Define and pursue opportunities to pay competitive wages in high cost of living sections of the state to improve recruitment and reduce employee vacancies in these areas - On track. Initial contacts made with DCA Office of Human Resources to identify the feasibility and mechanism to address this issue.
  8. Determine requirements and procure equipment for full service broadcast studio - Important - Target June 2018 - In conjunction with Public Affairs Office, identify and purchase necessary equipment needed for video/audio production (Timing is dependent on CSLB Headquarters building lease negotiations) - On track. In the requirements gathering and design phase of adding this to current lease negotiations for CSLB Headquarters.
  9. Review Consumer Services Representative Job Classification - Beneficial - Target June 2018 - Expand the qualifying degrees and required courses to increase the applicant pool for recruitment (May have to be coordinated with CalHR modernization project) - On track. Plans to enhance outreach to potential applications via Internet, PAO blasts, social media outreach, etc.; in addition, CSLB recently offered CSR exam, which created an ample hiring pool; recruitment is in process.
The HIS Online Project is continuing to move forward and making significant progress. IT staff are enhancing the HIS application to provide online processing functionality. The account management and association/disassociation portions are in the testing and refinement phases, while the online payments portion is in the prototyping and approval phases.
IT Business Analysts continue to work on system requirement specifications for the online processes. IT Programming and Licensing staff continue to collaborate to meet HIS requirements and work towards successful project implementation. The HIS online system will allow licensed contractors to associate with and disassociate from HIS registrants via the CSLB website. Once IT fully implements this project, HIS applicants will be able to pay registration fees online.
Future CSLB Online Licensing/Enforcement System Project
BreEZe Release One and Release Two are in production operations at the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA). The Phase Three implementation, which includes CSLB, has been placed on hold until the remaining boards and bureaus conduct further analysis to define their most current business requirements. This process could take a significant amount of time; therefore, CSLB has modified the title of this project from "BreEZe" to "Future CSLB Online Licensing/Enforcement System Project" to more accurately reflect the current effort.
Business Consulting Unit staff continue to work with programs to document and map current "as is" and "to be" business processes, conduct meetings with CSLB end-users to verify mapping, and complete gap/fit analysis.
Statewide Investigative Fraud Team (SWIFT) Cell Phone Upgrade
The Information Technology unit has begun the Phase Two deployment of new Samsung smartphones, which have larger screens, to SWIFT management personnel in Sacramento Headquarters, Oxnard, Norwalk, San Francisco, Berkeley and Santa Rosa. The deployment is scheduled to be complete mid-December 2016.
Phase Three of this deployment includes the remaining Enforcement staff, and should be complete in early 2017.
CSLB Change Control Committee
In August 2016, as part of its strategic plan objectives, the Information Technology unit established an internal Change Control Committee (CCC) consisting of executive management to review and prioritize IT project requests and work efforts. The committee is intended to ensure that IT workload and resources are assigned to mission critical projects that match CSLB's strategic goals, objects, and legislative mandates while maintaining continued operations.
The Information Technology unit continues to prioritize work based on the recommendations of the CCC. Recently, the Licensing and Enforcement divisions have prioritized their individual requests. The next CCC meeting will be held in late November 2016, to prioritize all requests based on business objectives, future IT efforts, and new legislative mandates. This process will promote improved communication and collaboration between CSLB executive management and CSLB IT staff, as well as help effectively plan and direct IT resources in completing new CSLB initiatives.
Interactive Voice Response (IVR) System
CSLB's IVR is an interactive, self-directed telephone system that provides valuable information to consumers, contractors, and others. It allows callers to request forms or pamphlets that are sent to them immediately, check a license history, and check the status of their application. The IVR also provides consumers with information on how to file complaints, as well as how to become a licensed contractor. In addition, the IVR gives callers the option to speak to call center agents in Sacramento or Norwalk. From August 2016 through October 2016, CSLB's IVR handled a total of 113,994 calls, an average of 37,998 calls per month. The system is available 24-hours a day, seven days a week.
CSLB's IT staff maintains high security on the Board's information technology networks, systems, and applications. Using a multi-layered defense utilizing various security products (Next Generation Firewall, anti-spam and anti-virus programs, web filtering, intrusion detection and prevention systems, event management, and correlation tools), CSLB proactively blocks/denies unauthorized attempts to breach its systems from all sources, including those emanating from foreign countries. To date, utilizing best practices, CSLB's IT security systems have successfully safeguarded CSLB information assets, and no unauthorized attempts to penetrate the system have succeeded.
Information Technology Objectives:
  1. Implement internal group to prioritize and execute IT projects - Essential - Target August 2016 - Develop executive team to review and prioritize all IT project request, ensuring that resources are directed to meet the business needs and priorities of CSLB division chiefs - First meeting held August 24, 2016; IT division will continue to review project list and prioritize as operation needs change; next meeting is scheduled for November 29, 2016, and will continue as needed to ensure that CSLB IT resources are focused on the business initiatives and objectives of CSLB.
  2. Conduct needs assessment to determine requirements for new licensing-enforcement computer system - Target September 2016 - Work with various CSLB units, including Cashiering, Testing, Licensing, and Enforcement to ensure current and future computer needs are met (may be affected by Department of Consumer Affairs' BreEZe Project) - CSLB has acquired services from "VIP" consulting group to assist with completing the "as-is", "to-be" and business requirements; project kick-off meeting was held on November 10, 2016, and CSLB staff are now fully engaged in this one-year contract work effort.
  3. Upgrade Investigator Cell Phones and Acquire Tablets - Important - Target Cell Phones - December 2016 & Tablets - December 2017 - Provide investigators working in field with equipment that improves usability, increases their use of electronic documentation, and offers more effective access to information (may be affected by cell phone refresh date) - The Information Technology unit has begun the phase 2 deployment of new Samsung smartphones to SWIFT management personnel in Sacramento HQ, Oxnard, Norwalk, San Francisco, Berkeley and Santa Rosa; the deployments is scheduled to be complete mid-December 2016. Phase 3 of this deployment will include the remaining Enforcement staff sometime during the early part of 2017.
  4. Implement Online Application for Home Improvement Salesperson - Important - Target February 2017 - Applicants would be able to submit applications online, association-disassociation, and could submit online registration renewals (may be affected by Teale) - In process; HIS online association and disassociation tasks currently being developed, followed by HIS application processing; target launch: Summer 2017.
  5. Implement ePayment Expansion to San Bernardino Office - Essential - Target June 2017 - Will take place after completion of building Improvements - E-Payment will be expanded to San Bernardino field office immediately after building improvements are completed; project is pending due to ADA and Fire Marshall approvals; work has not yet started.
  6. Research Options to Replace Current Imaging and Workflow Automated System (IWAS) - Important - Target October 2017 - Examine available solutions to replace system currently used to scan all incoming license related paperwork into CSLB's computer system (may integrate into Objective 5.2) - In progress; currently researching DOCSTAR solution; working with vendor to get product demo; also researching other state agencies that have both an Imaging and Workflow Automated System
  7. Implement Online ePayment System - Essential - Target December 2017 - Expand ePayment system currently only available in CSLB offices, by allowing 16 payment types to be made by credit card online - Not yet started.
  8. Implement SCORE 2.0 Programming - Essential - Target December 2018 - Allow exam development and administration to be more effective and efficient - Not yet started.
The CSLB spent $17.5 million through September 30, 2016 - this is about 27% of its budget.
The 2016-17 revenue through September 30, 2016, is just over $15.7 million.
The Contractors' State License fund had a $19 million reserve (for approximately 3 months) at the end of the 2015-16 fiscal year. The projected reserve for 2016-17 will cover 2.2 months in reserve.
March 2017, Sacramento, California
June 2017, Southern California - Joint Discussion with Nevada State Contractors' Board

Abdulaziz, Grossbart & Rudman

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