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Governor signs bill to consolidate county offices

Allows supervisors to remove public administrator as DA post, combine it with public guardian

Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill, authored by State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier (D-Concord), to help consolidate Contra Costa County offices Wednesday.

Senate Bill 803 gives the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors to consolidate the functions of the public administrator and public guardian. The public administrator position is currently held by District Attorney Mark Peterson.

"Consolidating the functions of the public administrator and the public guardian will streamline county government," said DeSaulnier, who district includes the San Ramon Valley. "SB 803 will allow Contra Costa to move the office of the public administrator to a more appropriate county department."

The bill also allows the supervisors to adopt an ordinance to change the public administrator's office from an elected position to an appointed position, as well as the ability to remove the function of the public administrator from the district attorney's office in order to consolidate it with the County Health Services Department's public guardian.

Also under SB 803, the county can appoint the same person to serve as public administrator and public guardian.

A public administrator provides services found in a health or social services department rather that a law enforcement agency, according to DeSaulnier.

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