California School Finance Authority
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Did You Know?
Since 2002, CSFA has disbursed more than $4.1 billion to charter schools throughout California to meet facility and working capital needs.
About the California School Finance Authority (CSFA)
The California School Finance Authority (CSFA) was created in 1985 to finance educational facilities and working capital on behalf of school districts and community college districts. Since its inception, the Authority has developed a number of financing programs primarily focused on assisting non-profit borrowers, school districts and community colleges with meeting their facility and working capital needs. CSFA programs include: Bond Financing, Charter School Facilities Program, Charter School Facility Grant Program (Senate Bill 740 Program), Charter School Facilities Credit Enhancement Grant Program, State Charter School Facilities Incentive Grants Program, Charter School Revolving Loan Fund Program, Qualified Public Educational Facility Bond Program, Charter School Bank Loan Program, Project Acceleration Notes and Credit Enhancement Alternatives, and the soon to launch Charter Access Bank Loan Enhancement Program (Charter ABLE). A history of CSFA Programs may be viewed below.
The Authority is chaired by State Treasurer Fiona Ma, CPA, and the Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Director of Finance serve as members. The Authority has offices in Los Angeles and Sacramento.
The California School Finance Authority has a long and storied past. Click on the icons below to read more about the Authority’s important milestones or be directed to Program pages. A detailed timeline of the Authority’s Programs can be viewed here.
California School Finance Authority Act AB 964 (Farr [D-San Francisco]), Ch. 28 is signed into law and created the Authority to aid school districts and community colleges in the sale of revenue bonds to build or remodel school facilities and provide working capital.
California Charter School Act SB 1448 (Hart [D-Santa Barbara]), Ch. 781/1992 is signed into law to “provide opportunities to teachers, parents, pupils, and community members to establish and maintain schools that operate independently from the existing school district structure, as a method to” improve pupil learning, increase learning opportunities for all pupils, create new professional opportunities for teachers, provide parents and pupils with expanded choices in the types of educational opportunities available within the public school system, hold the schools established accountable for meeting measurable pupil outcomes, and provide vigorous competition within the public school system.
The first charter school in the state, San Carlos Charter Learning Center, San Mateo County, opens as AB 19 (Quackenbush [R-Santa Clara]), Ch. 160/1993 and AB 1114 (Alpert [D-San Diego]), Ch. 161/1993 are enacted. AB 19 establishes a voluntary system of inter-district (between school districts) school choice. AB 1114 requires school districts, as a condition of receiving state apportionment funding, to establish a system of intra-districts (among schools within a school district).
Proposition 39, School Facilities Local Vote Act of 2000 (initiated constitutional amendment), sponsored by Governors Wilson and Davis, is approved, including provisions requiring school districts to share their facilities with charter schools so that charter school students have access to facilities “reasonably equivalent” to those available to other public school students. AB 1908, (Lempert [D-San Mateo]), Ch. 44/2000 was the legislation that outlines the process, authorization, and issuance of bonds by a 55% vote of the electorate, at a primary or general election.
AB 14 (Goldberg [D-Los Angeles]), Ch. 935/2001 passes, establishing the Charter Schools Facilities Program to provide funding to qualifying entities for the purpose of establishing school facilities for charter school pupils.
Proposition 47, Kindergarten-University Public Education Facilities Bond Act of 2002, AB 16 (Alpert [D-San Diego]), Ch. 33/2002, passes issuing $13.05 billion in GO bonds for K-12 school construction; and $100 million allocated to the Charter Schools Facilities Program, a pilot program modeled after the state’s School Facilities Program for charter school facilities.
The State Charter Schools Facilities Incentive Grants Program is created with $49.25 million in grant awards from the U.S. Department of Education (CFDA #84.282D). The program is designed to assist high-performing charter schools with rent, lease, debt service, and Proposition 39 pro-rata payments or costs related to the purchase, acquisition, design, new construction, or renovation of school facilities.
Proposition 55, Kindergarten-University Public Education Facilities Bond Act of 2004 a legislative bond act AB 16 (Alpert [D-San Diego County]) Ch.33/2002, is approved, allocating $7.05 billion for new construction and modernization projects with a focus on Critically Overcrowded Schools. $300 million is allocated to the Charter School Facilities Program.
Proposition 1D, Kindergarten-University Public Education Facilities Bond Act of 2006 a legislative bond act Nunez [D - Los Angeles] AB 127, Ch. 35 is approved; $500 million is allocated to the Charter School Facilities Program.
California School Finance Authority Act (AB 2717 Walters [R – Dana Point]), Ch. 325/2006, provides that charter schools are eligible for assistance by providing financing for working capital, as defined, and capital improvements under the amendment to this Act.
The State Charter Schools Facilities Incentive Grants Program receives an additional $48.5 million in funds to continue assisting high-performing charter schools with facilities costs as CSFA is awarded a second grant from the U.S. Department of Education (CFDA #84.282D).
CSFA receives a second award of $8.3 million from the U.S. Department of Education. This grant was issued to create the Charter School Facilities Credit Enhancement Grant Program.
AB 86 The Education Finance: (Education Omnibus Trailer Bill Committee on Budget) Ch. 48/2013 passes and transfers administration of the Charter School Facility Grant Program (SB740) (SB 740 O’Connell [D – Santa Barbara]) Ch. 892/2001 and Charter School Revolving Loan Fund from the California Department of Education to the California School Finance Authority. These programs provide annual assistance with facilities rent and lease expenditures to charter schools meeting certain eligibility criteria.
CSFA receives its third $50 million award under the U.S. Department of Education’s State Charter Schools Facilities Incentive Grants Program (CFDA #84.282D) to assist high-performing charter schools with facilities costs.
Proposition 51, the Kindergarten Through Community College Public Education Facilities Bond Act of 2016 an initiative state statute is approved, issuing $9 billion to fund improvement and construction of school facilities for K-12 schools and community colleges. $500 million in GO Bond funding is allocated to the Charter School Facilities Program.
CSFA is awarded $8 million from the U.S. Department of Education Expanding Quality Charter Schools Program – Grants for Credit Enhancement for Charter School Facilities (CFDA #84.354) grant and creates the Project Acceleration Notes and Credit Enhancement Alternatives Overview (PANACEA) Program. The program supports short-term interim financing to charter schools that have received a reservation of funds through the Charter School Facilities Program or are awaiting the issuance of long-term debt through CSFA’s Conduit Bond and Note Financing Program.
CSFA is awarded a $20 million credit enhancement grant (CFDA #84.354A) by the U.S. Department of Education to enhance bank loan financing for charter school facilities and creates the Charter Access Bank Loan Enhancement Program (Charter ABLE).
Key: CS = Charter Schools, USDE = U.S. Dept. of Education, GO = General Obligation, CDE = California Dept. of Education