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Suspense File Hearings Yield an Array of Outcomes

League-supported local finance bills advance; key housing legislation takes an unexpected turn and League to host webinar on May 23 to help city officials track remaining major bills of interest

May 17, 2019
The Senate and Assembly Appropriations Committees concluded their work on hundreds of bills pending on their Suspense Files on Thursday, May 16. 
 
The committee chairs revealed the fates of bills in rapid-fire: they either were passed; passed with amendments; or held in committee. Floor session will resume next week, where all non-urgency bills must pass by May 30 or be held for the year.
 
Among the housing policy bills held until 2020 was Sen. Scott Wiener’s SB 50, which proposed sweeping changes to override local plans and increase height limitations and housing densities around existing rail and bus stations and allow up to four-plexes within single-family zones. Momentum for SB 50 slowed, however, following amendments taken in recent weeks to create a two-tiered process that set different standards for cities, based upon whether they were within counties of more or less than 600,000 people. Following these amendments, questions increased over “carve-outs” and unequal application of the bill. Despite its current inactive status, the debate over this legislation will continue. Also held was AB 1568 (McCarty) which proposed to withhold various state grants over housing law compliance.
 
Other bills, however, with harmful impacts to local authority continued to move. Sen. Nancy Skinner’s SB 330, which would restrict local governments’ ability to enact or modify impact fees, limit parking requirements and design standards for a ten-year period, passed out of committee with amendments to shorten the bill’s timeframe to five years and restore the ability to levy impact fees.
 
Major local financing bills for local agencies continue to move, including: 
  • SB 5 (Beall/McGuire) which creates a local-state partnership using enhanced tax increment financing that can be used to build affordable housing, transit-oriented development, infill development, neighborhood revitalization and other uses. Passed with amendments to add coauthors and expand scope and clarify funding process.
  • ACA 1 (Aguiar-Curry) which reduces the local vote threshold for local bonds and taxes to invest in infrastructure and affordable housing from two-thirds to 55percent. Passed without amendments.
  • AB 213 (Reyes) which restores funding to 140 cities that lost funds following the annexation inhabited territory and reestablishes pervious funding incentives for cities that annex inhabited territory. Passed unanimously without amendments.
  • AB 10 (Chiu) which increases the state’s Low Income Housing Tax Credit by $500 million to build and rehabilitate much needed affordable housing. Passed unanimously without amendments.
Mixed results occurred on labor and government transparency legislation. Assembly Member Rob Bonta’s AB 1332, which proposed to limit a state or local agency’s ability to contract with a variety of vendors on account of their association with federal immigration agencies, was held in committee. Another bill by Assembly Member Bonta, AB 849, which would completely overhaul the process for establishing new election district boundaries and modifying existing ones, passed out of committee with amendments that lessened, but did not eradicate, the confusion and implementation challenges the bill would create for local government agencies. On the labor side, Sen. Henry Stern’s SB 542, which creates a retroactively applied presumption for post-traumatic stress disorder within the worker’s compensation system for police and fire personnel, passed out of committee without amendments.

Action on water-related issues was largely positive. Based upon an emerging budget agreement, which would allocate $150 million in General Funds to address water quality issues in disadvantaged communities rather than a statewide water tax, League-supported SB 669 (Caballero) was held, and AB 200 (Monning) will become the vehicle for allocating the $150 million. League-opposed SB 332 (Hertzberg), which proposed a massive and costly stormwater recycling mandate, was held.
 
On public safety, League and Police Chief-supported SB 230 (Caballero) which would address use of force issues moved out of committee. SB 230 is an alternative approach to Assembly Member Shirley Weber’s AB 392, currently in Assembly Rules, which would change long-standing legal thresholds.  Negotiations will continue this session.
 
A caution for city officials: while some controversial bills were held as two-year bills, there are many other measures still moving that threaten local authority or offer tools and resources to assist cities. City officials are encouraged to re-focus and send letters of support and opposition on the League’s remaining bills of interest as they move to the floor and cross houses. 
 
League Webinar
 
The League is hosting a webinar on Thursday, May 23 to help city officials keep track of the major bills that continue to move. Register online.
 
Senate and Assembly Appropriations Committee Actions
 
Below is a complete listing of all bills on which the League has adopted a position that was pending this week on either the Senate or Assembly Suspense Files. For more information on each individual bill please click on the below links.
 
Senate Appropriations
 
Oppose – Pass
SB 135 (Jackson) Paid Family Leave. – Pass
SB 142 (Wiener) Employees. Lactation Accommodation. – Pass
SB 266 (Leyva) Public Employees’ Retirement System. Disallowed Compensation. Benefit Adjustments. – Pass with amendments
HOT SB 330 (Skinner) Housing Crisis Act of 2019. – Pass with amendments
SB 416 (Hueso) Employment. Workers Compensation. – Pass
SB 518  (Wieckowski) Public Records. Disclosure. Court Costs and Attorney’s Fees. – Pass
HOT SB 542 (Stern) Worker’s Compensation. – Pass
SB 749 (Durazo) California Public Records Act. Trade Secrets. – Pass
 
Oppose – Held
HOT SB 50 (Wiener) Planning and Zoning. Housing Development. Incentives. – Two Year Bill
SB 332 (Hertzberg) Wastewater Treatment. Recycled Water. – Held
 
Oppose Unless Amended
HOT SB 13 (Wieckowski) Accessory Dwelling Units. – Pass with amendments
 
Concerns
SB 205 (Hertzberg) Business License. Stormwater Discharge Compliance. – Pass with amendments
 
Support – Pass
HOT SB 5 (Beall) Affordable Housing and Community Development Investment Program – Pass with amendments
SB 18 (Skinner) Keep Californians Housed Act. – Pass with amendments
SB 23 (Wiener) Unlawful Entry of a Vehicle. – Pass with amendments
SB 54 (Allen) California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act – Pass
SB 137 (Dodd) Federal Transportation Funds. State Exchange Programs. – Pass
SB 209 (Dodd) Wildfire. California Wildfire Warning Center. Weather Monitoring. – Pass
HOT SB 230 (Caballero) Law Enforcement. Use of Deadly Force. Training. Policies. – Pass
SB 287 (Nielsen) Commission on State Mandates. Test Claims. Filing Date. – Pass
SB 329 (Mitchell) Discrimination. Housing. Source of Income. – Pass with amendments
SB 667 (Hueso) Greenhouse Gases. Recycling Infrastructure and Facilities. – Pass
SB 670 (McGuire) Telecommunications. Outages Affecting Public Safety. – Pass
SB 695 (Portantino) Land Use Planning. Housing Element. Foster Youth Placement. – Pass

Support – Held
SB 46 (Jackson) Emergency Services. Telecommunications. – Held
SB 658 (Bradford) Cannabis. Licensing. Cannabis Retail Business Emblem. Track and Trace. – Held
HOT SB 669 (Caballero) Water Quality. Safe Drinking Water Fund. – Held
 
Support if Amended
SB 211 (Beall) State Highways. Leases. – Pass
SB 731 (Bradford) Workers’ Compensation. Risk Factors. – Pass
 
Pending
SB 182 (Jackson) Local Government. Planning and Zoning. Wildfires. – Pass
 
Pending Support
SB 352 (Dodd) Alcoholic Beverage Licensees. On-sale General Licenses for Bona Fide Eating Places. – Pass with amendments
 
Important Watch – Pass
SB 58 (Wiener) Alcoholic Beverages. Hours of Sale. – Pass
SB 200 (Monning) Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund. – Pass with amendments
 
Important Watch – Held
SB 724 (Stern) The California Beverage Container Recycling and Litter Reduction Act. – Held

Assembly Appropriations
 
Oppose – Pass
HOT AB 849 (Bonta) Elections. Local Redistricting. – Pass with amendments
AB 1320 (Nazarian) Public Employee Retirement Systems. Prohibited Investments. Turkey. – Pass
HOT AB 1356 (Ting) Cannabis. Local Jurisdictions. Retail Commercial Cannabis Activity. – Pass with amendments
 
Oppose – Held
HOT AB 1332 (Bonta) Sanctuary State Contracting and Investment Act. – Held
 
Oppose Unless Amended – Pass
AB 68 (Ting) Land Use. Accessory Dwelling Units. – Pass
AB 217 (E. Garcia) Safe Drinking Water for All Act. – Pass with amendments
 
Oppose Unless Amended – Held
AB 1568 (McCarty) Housing Law Compliance. Prohibition on Applying for State Grants. – Two Year Bill
 
Support – Pass
AB 10 (Chiu) Income Taxes. Credits Low-Income Housing. Farmworker Housing. – Pass
AB 41 (Gallagher) Disaster Relief. Camp Fire. – Pass
HOT AB 213 (Reyes) Local Government Finance. Property Tax Revenue Allocations. Vehicle Fee Adjustments. – Pass
HOT AB 429 (Nazarian) Seismically Vulnerable Buildings. Inventory. – Pass
AB 1080 (Gonzalez) California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act. – Pass
AB 1288 (Cooley) Cannabis. Track and Trace. – Pass
AB 1417 (Rubio) Cannabis Advertisement and Marketing. Unfair Business Practice. Public Nuisance. – Pass
HOT ACA 1 (Aguiar-Curry) Local Government Financing. Affordable Housing and Public Infrastructure. Voter Approval. – Pass
 
Support – Held
AB 234 (Nazarian) Income Taxes. Credit. Seismic Retrofits. – Held
AB 257 (Nielsen) Firearms. Prohibited Persons. – Held
AB 266 (Choi) Income Taxes. Credits. Attic Vent Closures. – Held
AB 291 (Chu) Local Emergency Preparedness and Hazard Mitigation Fund. – Two Year
AB 297 (Gallagher) Emergency Average Daily Attendance. – Held
AB 659 (Mullin) Transportation. Emerging Transportation Technologies. California Smart City Challenge Grant Program. – Held
AB 818 (Cooley) Local Government Finance. Vehicle License Fee Adjustment Amounts. – Two Year Bill
 
Pending Support
AB 1259 (Luz Rivas) Personal Income Taxes. Corporation Taxes. Credits. California New Markets Tax Credit. – Held
 
Pending
AB 1279 (Bloom) Planning and Zoning. Housing Development. High-Resource Areas. – Pass
 
 


 
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