Assembly finds $2 million for backlogged Secretary of State

That was quick.

Just six days after questioning the Secretary of State about filing delays in her office, the Assembly voted Monday to allocate an additional $2 million to start hiring more staff. The proposal, Assembly Bill 113, still needs to pass out of the Senate before it can be enacted, but the fast turnaround is unusual for Sacramento.

Last week, in a hearing before an Assembly budget subcommittee chaired by Orange County Assemblyman Tom Daly, D-Anaheim (at left in photo), Secretary of State Debra Bowen described her office's antiquated procedures for processing business filings, a process that relies on three-by-five index cards. Bowen testified that this paper- and labor-intensive process, combined with budget cuts and staffing reductions, has resulted in her office taking six weeks to process critical documents that business people need to get their enterprises up and running.