About This Site

To promote transparency in government, California State Treasurer John Chiang created this website to make it easier for taxpayers to track $1.5 trillion in bonds, notes and other public debt issued over the past 30 years by more than 6,000 State and local governmental entities. More than 50,000 different financings involving public debt were used to build important public infrastructure and provide valued public services. About one-third of the total debt was issued to refinance outstanding debt, a strategy used by public agencies to lower interest costs, improve debt repayment terms and save taxpayer money.

This site contains data on the debt that State and local government agencies issued and reported to the California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission (CDIAC), which is chaired by the Treasurer. When government entities sell bonds, notes or other forms of debt, they are known as issuers, and the debt is referred to as the issuance. 

The data presented on this site should not be used in place of any disclosure legally required in any public securities offering. State and local governments with outstanding debt securities are required to report certain financial information and operating data, as well as information regarding certain material developments with respect to their securities, and file such information and operating data with the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board Electronic Municipal Market Access (EMMA).

Data presented here is informational and does not constitute investment advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any of the debt instruments displayed. For investment advice on bonds or other securities of the reporting local governments, please contact your investment advisor. No statement found on this site may be incorporated by reference in any offering document prepared for the purpose of offering any securities. By choosing to view the information on this site, you are acknowledging that you have read, understood and accepted the terms of using this site.

This site is a work in progress and will be improved over time. If you find errors or have suggestions, please send us feedback. Data is updated monthly, so check the site often.

Below are answers to frequently asked questions:

What is open data?

Open data allows information to be freely used, reused and redistributed by anyone. The Treasurer established this site to encourage users to review, compare, visualize, and analyze data -- and share their discoveries -- in real time.

We believe open data has the potential to support a range of outcomes from promoting community involvement and improving California’s business climate to increasing government efficiency and identifying potentially wasteful spending.

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What data is available?

This site includes debt-related data submitted by the State, cities, counties, special districts, public education entities and other local governments since 1985. Records may be accessed for a designated time range or by specific criteria (for example, principal amounts, debt type or county).

For each proposed issuance, the database contains only preliminary data until the debt is issued and the issuing agency submits final issuance information to CDIAC. This site only reflects debt information at the time it is proposed and at the time it is issued (Mello-Roos and Marks-Roos debt excepted). Post-issuance information (for example: outstanding balances or ratings changes) is not collected or displayed.

The data displayed on this site is collected through statutorily required reports submitted by issuers or their agents to CDIAC. CDIAC analysts undertake a “best efforts” data verification process by cross-referencing the public and private financing documents submitted to CDIAC and through direct follow-up with issuers, but errors and omissions cannot be fully avoided. Also, due to timing of the receipt of the report, incomplete reporting, or modification of reporting requirements over time, some data may not be available.

Data is available from this site’s homepage for the following categories:

  • State of California
  • Counties
  • Cities
  • K-14 Schools
  • UC & CSU
  • Joint Powers Authorities & Marks-Roos
  • Mello-Roos
  • Special Districts

For each category, you may dive into the data in two ways: through a Data Lens page that features notable findings and trends in interactive graphical form, and via a Compare Issuers page that allows you to compare local governments that issue debt.

Data lens pages (Example: State of California) offer debt data sorted in a variety of ways, which may include:

  • Sale Date
  • Sold Status
  • Issuer County
  • Issuer Group
  • Issuer Type
  • Issuer
  • Debt Type
  • Purpose
  • Source of Repayment
  • Underwriter
  • Financial Advisor
  • Bond Counsel
  • Trustee

Compare Issuers pages (Example: State of California) allow you to compare up to five issuers. This tool allows you to make your own charts comparing data for proposed and issued debt in these categories:

  • Principal
  • New Money
  • Refinancings

You can refine results by date range, debt type, purpose and source of repayment. You can also view the cost of issuance as a percentage of what is borrowed.

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What is the source of this data?

State law that took effect in 1982 requires all governmental agencies that issue debt to report information on each issuance to CDIAC [Government Code Sections 8855(k) and 8855(i)]. Agencies must provide data to CDIAC on proposed debt no later than 30 days prior to each issuance, and information on issued debt no later than 21 days after the sale. Reporting instructions and forms may be found on CDIAC’s website.

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Is data on this site audited?

The information displayed is compiled by the State Treasurer’s Office from reports submitted to CDIAC in accordance with State law. The information has not been independently audited by the State Treasurer’s Office for accuracy and completeness. The reliability of the data is the sole responsibility of the reporting governmental agency.

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What should I know when comparing data from local governments?

Users are encouraged to focus their comparisons between similar issuers (example: city vs. city), debt types (example: general obligation bonds vs. general obligation bonds) and issuance sizes. Due to the complexities of different debt issuances, be aware that comparing dissimilar issuers, such as a city and a school district, may produce results that are not directly comparable.

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What is Data Lens?

Data Lens pages available on this site provide you with interactive sets of charts that offer deeper insight into data. See a sample data lens page.

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Are there differences between data results produced from the homepage wheel and county map?

Yes. If you select Counties from the homepage wheel, results will include a summary of data for debt issued by all California counties and their subsidiaries. If you select a county on the California map, results will include all debt issued by all issuers in that particular county.

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Where can I find data for San Francisco?

San Francisco has a unique status in California as both a city and county. On this site, data for San Francisco is included in the county category.

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Are there more data beyond what’s available through this site’s user interface?

Data Lens, which offers notable findings and trends in interactive graphical form, and Compare Issuers, which allows you to compare local governments that issue debt, both provide access to the most commonly sought data. Additionally, more granular data can be found on the Data Catalog and Raw Export pages.

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Why is data from my local government not available?

This site includes data from State and local government entities that filed debt reports describing their issuances with CDIAC according to State law. If a field is blank, the local government may not have issued debt, that data category may not have applied for that particular debt issuance, the data may not have been collected during the time period in question, or the issuer may have failed to file information with CDIAC.

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Where can I learn about terms commonly used on this site?

Please see our glossary of debt terms.

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Do you offer additional help to navigate the data?

Please see our series of tutorials aimed at helping users get the most out of this site.

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Do you offer tools for developers to build apps?

The Treasurer has long embraced and promoted the use of technology as a way to help the public better understand government finance numbers. We encourage Web developers to explore this data, create something new and share it with the world. For tools to build software applications, visit Socrata’s developer website.

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What browsers perform best with this site?

We suggest using Google Chrome for the best user experience. This site supports the most recent versions of Chrome, Internet Explorer, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox. For more details on the most recent supported versions, visit Socrata’s support website.

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Can I download the raw data?

Yes. You can view raw data for all debt by visiting the Raw Export page, or you can download the data from any dataset found on the Data Catalog page or any Data Lens page by using the Download or Export link. We recommend downloading data as CSV rather than XLS or XLSX if you plan to do any calculations for number fields.

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