News Hub

Welcome to our rolling repository of updates on reform in California. For press inquiries, please contact Jania Palacios (520-404-7643,

CAFWD In The News

How tech startups can improve government-citizen relationship

In cities around the nation and across California, the civic tech industry is having a dramatic and immediate impact on citizens’ lives by helping government work better. This vibrant sector is not only creating jobs, but also leveraging technology to foster greater transparency and accountability, increase civic engagement, and help government provide better services. Read more

Scenes from the March 2015 election

“Folks think the game is rigged. Do elected officials really serve their interests or are they serving the public interest?” Ed Coghlan said. Read more

California elections officials, voting advocates tackle low voter turnout

When hundreds of Californians got together to roll up their sleeves and talk about elections last week, they were joined by a looming, unwanted problem. “And that voter turnout. That’s really the elephant in the room, isn’t it?” said California Secretary of State Alex Padilla.“ Read more

Editorial: Why California must overhaul its tax structure

“It would be foolish to presume that we’re going to be in this economy forever,” said Lenny Mendonca, co-chair of California Forward, a nonpartisan group dedicated to making government more efficient, effective and accountable. Read more

How to get startup thinking into government

Frustrated by public sector inefficiency, citizens often wonder: why can’t government be run like business? Open data advocates argue that’s the wrong question. Read more

More CAFwd in the News

News Clips

Number crunch defines first part of the LCAP rubric

Numerical data on a wide array of topics – from facilities and teacher assignments to learning climate and test scores – would serve as the centerpiece of a performance rubric for analyzing how well schools are using new state money to educate students. Read more

Measures to bolster voter turnout sail toward passage; incumbents fend off challenges

In a campaign where the issue of voter participation was front and center, two measures to bolster turnout by combining Los Angeles elections with state and federal contests sailed toward passage Tuesday, early results showed. Read more

Legislating Evidence-Based Policymaking

Under increasing pressure to demonstrate effectiveness and do more with less, many governments are expanding their use of evidence-based programs—those shown in rigorous evaluations to be effective. Read more

Supreme Court skeptical of citizen panels that redraw congressional districts

The future of California’s effort to entrust a nonpartisan citizens’ panel with redrawing the state’s congressional districts appeared in serious doubt Monday after arguments in the Supreme Court. Read more

Bay Area Legislator Says Fight Outside Campaign Cash … By Taxing It

Critics of the outsized role that independent political action committees now have in campaigns often talk about clamping down, imposing contribution limits and the like. But one brand-new idea in the state Capitol suggests something different: impose a tax. Read more

More Clips

Press Releases

Smart Voter and Voter’s Edge Launch Comprehensive Nonpartisan Online Voter Guide for California Vote

Personalized Ballot Look-Up Feature Allows Voters to Mark Selections and Share Ballot Choices Via Social Media Read more

CA Fwd Calls on Legislators to Take Immediate Action on Implementing Reforms to Restore Public Trust

“Path Toward Trust” Urges Specific Actions to Increase Transparency on Financial Data and Public Decisions Read more

California Forward and California Special Districts Association launch new transparency portal

Today California Forward (CA Fwd) and the California Special Districts Association (CSDA) have launched a first-of-its-kind portal providing data and information on more than 1,100 California special districts. Read more

CA Fwd Issues the State of Transparency in California As Part of National Sunshine Week

The Update Reinforces CA Fwd's Efforts to Encourage Transparency to Strengthen Good Government Practices in California Read more

New CA Fwd Report Shows Pretrial Programs Could be Cost-Effective Alternatives to Crowded Jails

Report Features Best Practices from Pretrial Programs in Five California Counties Read more

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