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Controller Yee Appoints Civil Engineer to Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Commission

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SACRAMENTO—California State Controller Betty T. Yee today appointed Ken Kayser, a civil engineer with nearly four decades of construction industry experience, to the California Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Commission.

The Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act was established in 1983 to help expedite public works projects and encourage best accounting practices by local agencies.  Under the Act, the Commission developed a manual of cost accounting policies that are to be used by local agencies to estimate costs to determine if competitive bidding is needed, and to capture and record actual costs.

Local agencies that elect to adhere to the Commission’s cost accounting policies may complete public works projects up to $45,000 with their own workforce and projects up to $175,000 by contract without formal bidding procedures.  Participating agencies credit the Commission’s work with eliminating considerable red tape and improving the timeliness of project completion.

A civil engineering graduate of California State University San Jose, Kayser has worked in the construction industry since 1979.  He brings to the Commission extensive experience in cost estimation and currently serves as a construction consultant for best practices and claims management.  Kayser was nominated for appointment by the Associated General Contractors of California, which sponsored legislation to create the Act.  He fills the seat left vacant by the January resignation of David McCosker, who served on the Commission since 2000.

“This Commission’s work has helped local agencies standardize best accounting practices, expedited small public works projects, and improved relations between government and industry,” said Yee, the state’s chief fiscal officer.  “I am happy to have Mr. Kayser bring his experience to the Commission.”

Any city, county, special district, school district, or community college district can choose to become a participant of the Act, which also provides agencies a reduction in paperwork and advertising requirements.  Every five years, the Commission reviews existing informal bid limits to determine whether inflation or other factors necessitate an increase in established thresholds.

The State Controller appoints 13 of the 14 Commission members.  One member is designated by the Contractors State License Board.  Members serve without compensation, but are reimbursed for necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.

As the chief fiscal officer of California, Controller Yee is responsible for accountability and disbursement of the state’s financial resources. The Controller also safeguards many types of property until claimed by the rightful owners, and has independent auditing authority over government agencies that spend state funds. She is a member of numerous financing authorities, and fiscal and financial oversight entities including the Franchise Tax Board. She also serves on the boards for the nation's two largest public pension funds. Elected in 2014, Controller Yee is the tenth woman elected to a statewide office in California’s history. Follow the Controller on Twitter at @CAController and on Facebook at California State Controller’s Office.