Legal Opinions of the Attorney General - Monthly Opinion Report

The Attorney General’s Opinion Unit is responsible for researching and drafting the formal opinions of the Attorney General. This Monthly Opinion Report lists all of the questions that are currently under consideration for formal opinions.

The Attorney General welcomes and solicits the views of all interested persons concerning the issues raised in any question submitted for an opinion. Views should be in writing and directed to the deputy assigned to prepare the opinion. Please follow the instructions under How to Submit Views on Assigned Opinion Requests in the right side bar menu. All views submitted before publication will be considered, but early submissions are greatly preferred. All submissions will be treated as public records subject to disclosure under the Public Records Act.

By law, the Attorney General is authorized to issue formal opinions only to certain public officials. Please see our FAQs page for more information about how to request an opinion.


New Questions Assigned During May 2024

Opinion No. Question Requested by Assigned To
24-404

Does the Commission have the authority to adjust the base pay of the members of the State Board of Equalization in light of the reduction in their duties, powers and responsibilities following passage of Assembly Bill 102, The Taxpayer Transparency and Fairness Act of 2017?

California Citizens Compensation Committee Duncan Lee
05/09/2024
24-501

May a city or county lawfully impose local inclusionary and additional affordable housing requirements on the complete number of residential units being developed in a project (including the units created as a result of a density bonus allowed pursuant to state or local law)?

Senator Monique Limón Bidart
05/06/2024

Opinions Issued or Concluded During May 2024

Opinion No. Question(s) Presented Conclusion(s) Issued
23-1101

May the same individual lawfully serve as a member of both the San Benito County Planning Commission and San Benito County Board of Education?

No. Under Government Code section 1099, which prohibits the same individual from holding incompatible public offices, the same individual may not lawfully serve as a member of both the San Benito County Planning Commission and the San Benito County Board of Education.

05/01/2024
23-901

GOVERNMENT WATCHDOGS, a California non-profit public benefit corporation, has applied to this office for leave to sue proposed defendant PABLO BRYANT in quo warranto to remove him from his seat on the Temecula-Elsinore-Anza-Murrieta Resource Conservation District’s Board of Directors.

We conclude that there is no substantial issue of law or fact as to whether Director Bryant is lawfully holding office. We further conclude that the public interest would not be served by allowing the proposed quo warranto action to proceed. Consequently, the application for leave to sue is DENIED.

05/22/2024
Answered by Letter, Withdrawn, or Cancelled
Opinion No. Question Status
24-301

Was Mark Skvarna lawfully appointed as Interim Superintendent of the Montebello Unified School District?

Withdrawn on 05/09/2024

Pending Matters:


Opinion Requests

Opinion No. Question(s) Assigned To
24-501

May a city or county lawfully impose local inclusionary and additional affordable housing requirements on the complete number of residential units being developed in a project (including the units created as a result of a density bonus allowed pursuant to state or local law)?


Bidart
24-405

Has the United States acquired legislative jurisdiction at San Clemente Island, Los Angeles County, pursuant to Chapter 56, Statutes of 1897?


McCarroll
24-404

Does the California Citizens Compensation Commission have the authority to adjust the base pay of the members of the State Board of Equalization in light of the reduction in their duties, powers and responsibilities following passage of Assembly Bill 102, The Taxpayer Transparency and Fairness Act of 2017?


Duncan Lee
24-403

May federally recognized Indian tribes which are located exclusively within the exterior boundaries of the State of California and who have adopted laws that impose comprehensive requirements substantially comparable to the California Cannabis Regulatory Framework lawfully conduct intrastate commercial cannabis activity solely within the State of California with California state cannabis licensees without obtaining such a license themselves?


Thomas
24-402

When a state body is required by statute to consider and deliberate on privileged, proprietary, or other confidential information related to the conduct of a privately-funded business activity (in this case, the transaction of residential earthquake insurance in the state), does the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act require such discussion to occur in an open session of a public meeting?


Medeiros
24-401

Asks for an interpretation of Public Utilities Code section 12820—pertaining to municipal utility districts and the “security forces” they may choose to employ—specifically whether such districts are “legally obligated to conform” to the statute’s provisions regarding the recruitment, training, authority, and powers of those designated as security officers.


Bidart
24-201

Does the term “voluntary carbon offset,” as used in Assembly Bill No. 1305 (Stats. 2023, ch. 365), include the use of Renewable Energy Certificates, also known as renewable energy credits, when used outside of California’s Renewable Portfolio Standard program?


Kentfield
24-102

Is Madera County’s Regional Water Management Group subject to the Brown Act?


Thomas
24-101

Under the terms of Water Code Appendix section 121-408, may the Fox Canyon Groundwater Management Agency hire its own staff or contract with an entity other than the County of Ventura or the United Water Conservation District for staff services?


Duncan Lee
23-1002

Are public entities required to offer remote participation as a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to members of boards and commissions regulated by the Brown Act open meetings law?


Bidart
23-1001

Does California law prohibit the offering and operation of daily fantasy sports betting platforms with players physically located within the State of California, regardless of whether the operators and associated technology are located within or outside of the State?


Kentfield
23-701

Does the California Office of Tax Appeals have the legal authority and jurisdiction to issue a written opinion declaring a provision in the California Code of Regulations, which was promulgated by a different state agency and approved by the Office of Administrative Law, to be invalid and refuse to enforce the regulation on that basis?


Kentfield
23-601

1. May the California State Teacher’s Retirement System (CalSTRS) assess a penalty against a county office of education (COE) for errors in the CalSTRS reporting and contributions of a charter school that operates within the county and submits its CalSTRS payments through the COE?


2. If so, how may the COE defend against an assessment it believes to be incorrect?


3. Could CalSTRS issue a warrant that would allow the COE to withdraw funds directly from an agency that provides its CalSTRS reporting and contributions through the COE if that agency refuses to submit its penalty assessments to the COE voluntarily?


Medeiros
23-401

Is it permissible for prosecutors to issue criminal grand jury subpoenas for a future date when the Penal Code section 904.6 criminal grand jury has not yet been empaneled, but which will be empaneled by the witness appearance date?


Duncan Lee
23-201

1. Does the probable cause standard for a grand jury criminal indictment state a lower standard of proof than preponderance of the evidence?


2. Must the word “shall” as used in Penal Code section 939.8, pertaining to the grand jury’s issuance of a criminal indictment, be construed as “should” in order to avoid possible constitutional infirmity?


McCarroll

Quo Warranto Matters

No quo warranto matters were pending during this period.