Legislative Report

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At the March 13 meeting of the Culver City Democratic Club, the legislative committee presented thirteen bills. During the meeting, Paula Amezola moved that we add one other bill from Lola Smallwood Cuevas—SB 1338. Membership voted unanimously to include SB 1338 on our consent calendar and to approve the consent calendar. The legislative committee—Leah Pressman, Cynthia Hart and Haifaa Moammar—will write and submit letters in support (or opposition) to these bills during the upcoming legislative session.

AB 1975 (Bonta)—Medi-Cal: medically supportive food and nutrition interventions—would make food and nutrition interventions deemed medically necessary by healthcare providers a permanent part of Medi-Cal benefits in California. Pilot Programs in California have provided evidence that these types of programs improve health outcomes. This bill is part of the 2024 reparations packet from the California Legislative Black Caucus. CalMatters Press release

AB 1986 (Bryan)—State prisons: banned books—would require the Office of Inspector General (OIG) to make public and readily accessible the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Centralized List of Disapproved Publications, adding transparency to a book banning process in state prisons and juvenile facilities which is currently done in the dark. It will require CDCR to remove a ban if the OIG finds no reasonable justification for restricting access to a book. AB 1986 is part of the California Black Legislative Caucus reparations package of bills. AB 1986 Factsheet Isaac Bryan

“In California prisons you can read Hitler’s manifesto, but we have banned books written by Nelson Mandela and many other authors of color…It’s time to change that.”
—Assemblymember Isaac Bryan

AB 2236 and SB 1053 (Allen, Bleakespear)—Solid waste: reusable grocery bags: standards; plastic film prohibition—would close loopholes in California’s 2014 plastics ban to ensure consumers are using either reusable or paper bags. The 2014 bag ban not only didn’t work to reduce plastic waste, but California saw a significant increase in plastic waste since the 2014 ban. Press Release LA Times

AB 2256 (Friedman, Berman)—Net Energy Metering—would roll back the policy put in place last year by the CPUC that sharply reduced the amount utilities pay people with solar panels when they sell surplus power to the grid. Read more here.

AB 2441 (Ash Kalra)—School safety: mandatory notifications—would decrease law enforcement involvement in student behavioral issues at school, ensure California law is closer aligned with federal law, and provide educators the flexibility they need to respond appropriately to student behavior. Press release 

AB 2665 (Lee)—Housing finance: mixed income revolving loan program—would establish a Mixed Income Revolving Loan Program to provide zero-interest construction loans to qualifying residential, infill housing developers for the purpose of constructing deed-restricted affordable housing.

AB 2881 (Lee)—The Social Housing Act—would establish the California Housing Authority to produce mixed-income housing that is affordable and financially self-sustaining. Press release Alfred Twu

AB 3145 (Bryan)—Family preservation services: standards—would require that court-ordered parenting classes in child welfare cases be evidence-based, “culturally competent” and provided by qualified professionals. It would also establish a tracking system to measure the outcome of parenting class services and would require that counties detail data about success rates and qualifications of service providers. LA Times1 LA Times2 Fact sheet

SB 1011 (Jones)—Encampments: penalties—OPPOSE—would prohibit encampments within 500 feet of schools, open spaces and major transit stops. The bill was modeled after San Diego’s “Unsafe Camping Ordinance.” Mike Bonin LAist Report

SB 1116 (Portantino, Durazo)—Unemployment insurance: trade disputes: eligibility for benefits—would make striking workers eligible for unemployment insurance benefits. Press release 

SB 1174 (David Min)—Elections: voter identification—would preempt Huntington Beach and other California cities from enacting voter identification requirements for local elections. Huntington Beach’s Measure One to require voter ID in municipal elections passed by a vote of more than 50% on the March primary ballot. Press release

SB 1338 (Smallwood Cuevas)—Education finance: emergencies: apportionments: COVID-19: Culver City Unified School District—would exempt Culver City Unified School District from fiscal penalties for failing to maintain the requisite number of instructional days subsequent to the emergency closure of its schools from January 19, 2022, to January 21, 2022 due to the impacts of the COVID-19 emergency and the denial of a specified waiver.

SB 1374 (Becker)—Net Energy Metering—would restore the right of renters, farmers, and schools to make and consume their own solar energy, a right that the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) took away from these folks last year. Fact_sheet PUC decision for VNBT & NBT-A

These join the bills approved at our February meeting: AB 1810 (Isaac Bryan, Tina McKinnor, and Mia Bonta)—Menstrual Products in Prisons; and ACA 16—(Bryan) Green Amendment. We also voted to continue to support bills that we had endorsed in previous years: AB 2200 (Kalra) Guaranteed Health Care for all, ACA 5 (Low)—The California Right to Marry, ACA 8 (Wilson)—Ending slavery in California, SB 252 (Gonzalez, Stern, Wiener) Public retirement systems: fossil fuels: divestment, and the bill formerly known as SB 238, SB 294 (Weiner)—Health care coverage: independent medical review. See the March edition of the Club newsletter for a more complete write up of these bills.