Anyone who has submitted a business filing to the California Secretary of State’s office know that a serious problem exists. At present, the Secretary of State has 122,000 documents waiting to be filed. The delays are simply intolerable for the conduct of business in a modern commercial state. For example, the Secretary of State is processing today merger documents that were filed on April 15!

After the twilight there will be a dawn

The good news is that the legislature recently enacted and Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 113. This bill appropriates $1.6 million to the Secretary of State’s office. The appropriation requires that these additional moneys be used for “costs associated with reducing the processing time for business filings”. According to the bill analysis, the backlog will be attacked using overtime and temporary staffing. The bill also requires the Secretary of State to report back to the Legislative Budget Committee on her progress in reducing the backlog.

The other good news is that the bill takes effect immediately pursuant to Article IV, Section 12(e) of the California Constitution.