Capitol Corner Update
As the current 2017-18 legislative comes to an end on August 31, legislators are eager to move their remaining measures through the legislative process. Since this is the second year of the two-year legislative session, all bills must pass out of both houses in order to be signed by the Governor – bills that fail to pass will not carry over to 2019. In these last few weeks of session, the remaining bills will be heard in fiscal committees and must receive enough votes on the Assembly and Senate Floors.
Since there is a limited amount of time until the end of session, many bills are moving quickly and being amended in order to pass. CALBO is keeping a close eye on many bills that impact our membership, specifically Assemblymember Nazarian’s seismic resiliency measures. On August 6, AB 1857 and AB 2681 were placed on the Senate Appropriations Committee suspense file. Bills are placed on the suspense file if they have a significant fiscal impact on the state. Once they are on the list, their fiscal impact is assessed, and all of the measures are prioritized. Bills that address legislative priorities (the drought, affordable housing, transportation) often get pulled off of the list first, along with other bills that have a smaller fiscal impact. The rest of the bills that do not get passed out of the Appropriations Committee, and pulled off of the suspense file, are held in committee and “die” there.
The Senate Appropriations Committee “read” the suspense file on August 16 and both of Assemblymember Nazarian’s seismic resiliency measures were passed out of that committee. These bills will now move to the Senate Floor for a “floor vote.” If it makes it off of the Senate Floor, it will go back to the Assembly for a vote on all of the amendments made in Senate, and then it will go to the Governor’s desk.
CALBO is currently opposed to both of Assemblymember Nazarian’s seismic resiliency measures. AB 1857 would develop a working group to evaluate “functional recovery,” and AB 2681 would require local agencies to create an inventory of “potentially vulnerable buildings” in their jurisdiction. CALBO estimates that the costs of AB 2681 would be burdensome on local governments, and no funding mechanism has been identified.
CALBO supports seismic resiliency initiatives and earlier this year developed a policy principle, which outlines CALBO’s philosophy. CALBO supports local governments that have developed their own seismic resiliency policies. These locally created programs address the needs of the community and the region in which they are developed. CALBO will continue to work with Assemblymember Nazarian’s office on this issue in order to create language that our membership can support.
If you have any questions, or wish to know more about CALBO’s legislation of interest, feel free to contact Katie Almand, CALBO Government Affairs Manager. You can also stay up to date on CALBO’s legislative activities on CALBO’s legislative page.