Capitol Corner Update
As the fall recess comes to an end, CALBO is preparing for the next legislative session. The second year of the 2019-2020 session will begin on Monday, January 6, 2020 and legislators will hit the ground running. The beginning of the year is always a busy time as legislators rush to move any bills that carried over from 2019. Bills that were held in committee, or marked as a 2-year bills, will have a few weeks to be amended and move to the next committee so that they may continue through the legislative cycle. In addition to amending and moving 2-year bills, legislators will also be introducing new language. The bill introduction deadline is February 21, 2020, which make the first weeks of 2020 a hectic time for capitol staff and third house stakeholders such as CALBO. Any 2-year bills that do not progress by January 31, 2020 will die and not be eligible for the governor’s signature.
Looking ahead to 2020, CALBO will continue to advocate on public safety measures, which align with our six-point policy. This past year over 2,700 bills were introduced, and Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law hundreds of these bills. In 2019, CALBO tracked close to 30 pieces of legislation that would effect local building departments and public safety. Many of these bills dealt with high priority issues such as fire prevention, accessory dwelling units, and seismic resiliency. CALBO was pleased to support bills that were signed into law, and contribute necessary amendments to bills that we opposed.
Currently, CALBO is tracking several 2-year bills which we hope move next year. Most importantly, CALBO will continue working with Assemblymember Nazarian on seismic resiliency throughout the state. Both of the Member’s seismic bills were made 2-year bills earlier this year, and did not proceed to the governor’s desk. This is most likely due to the fact that the department of finance opposed both AB 393 and AB 429 due to their large price tags. CALBO will work with the Assemblymember’s staff to see what amendments can be made to both move the bill and maintain CALBO’s support.
As this was Governor Newsom’s first term, legislators and stakeholders alike, waited to see what his priorities would be. Governor Newsom vetoed a small percentage of bills this year, which could become a trend. Additionally, he signed into law many bills that his predecessor had previously vetoed. This may make lawmakers hopeful that their language will get passed, if they had been previously opposed by the governor’s office. The governor will most likely continue to pursue high-priority issues such as affordable housing, homelessness, education, and fire prevention. Next year, the legislature will have the opportunity to introduce thousands of new proposed changes to California law that will ultimately land on the governor’s desk. Because of the large number of bills that were passed by the governor, next year’s budget might be even tighter – which could effect the passage rate of future bills.
CALBO is looking ahead to next year and the possibilities it will bring. If you wish to read more about CALBO’s legislative efforts please visit the CALBO legislative webpage, which is updated in real time when the legislature is in session. If you would like a full overview of CALBO’s bills of interest, you also reference our online bill reports on the same webpage. Additionally, should you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact CALBO’s Director of Public Affairs Katie Almand.