September 2021 – This Month in Sacramento

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Legislative Update
by Richard Markuson
Region 9 Legislative Advocate

July/August was Recess Month

The Legislature recessed for their summer break on July 16 and returned on August 16. While the budget (which is composed of “early actions,” the budget bill, budget bill junior, and several budget trailer bills, left unfinished were several tailer bills including HSRA funding and Green House Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) allocations.

State Legislation


AB 75 (O’Donnell – D) Places the Kindergarten-Community Colleges Public Education Facilities Bond Act of 2022 on the 2022 statewide ballot, to be operative if approved by voters at the election. 6/18/2021-In Committee: Hearing postponed by Committee.  ASCE position: Watch

SB 22 (Glazer – D) Would place on the ballot the Public Preschool, K–12, and College Health and Safety Bond Act of 2022 as a state general obligation bond act that would provide $15,000,000,000 to construct and modernize education facilities. It requires the department of general services to prioritize projects for funding, which includes the use of a project labor agreement (PLA). 6/10/2021-Referred to Coms. on ED. and HIGHER ED.  ASCE position: Disfavor

SB 45 (Portantino – D) This bill would enact the Wildfire Prevention, Safe Drinking Water, Drought Preparation, and Flood Protection Bond Act of 2022, which authorizes the sale of $5.595 billion in general obligation bonds, upon approval by voters at the November 2021 statewide general election. Bond funds would be used for projects related to wildfire prevention, safe drinking water, drought preparation, and flood protection. 6/1/2021-Ordered to inactive file on request of Senator Portantino.  ASCE position: Watch

Business Issues

SB 319 (Melendez – R) Requires local agencies that do not comply with impact fee annual report requirements for three years to include each year they did not comply with these requirements in requested audits. 6/28/2021-Read second time. Ordered to third reading.  ASCE position: Watch


SB 44 (Allen – D) Establishes expedited administrative and judicial review of environmental review and approvals granted for “environmental leadership transit projects” that meet specified requirements. The bill would exempt PLA projects from skilled and trained workforce mandates, the need to submit certified payroll records, and prohibit the State Labor Commissioner from enforcing the labor code. Requires prevailing wages and apprentices on private projects authorized by the bill. 7/14/2021-Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Com. on APPR. ASCE position: Watch


AB 1037 (Grayson – D) This bill would require DGS to develop guidance, policies, and procedures for integrating and developing digital construction technologies for use on a civil infrastructure project generated by specified state entities and has a state project cost greater than $50,000,000. Applies to:(1) The Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, DGS, the Department of Parks and Recreation, Caltrans, DWR, HSRA, the Military Department. 6/9/2021- 7/6/2021-From committee: Do pass and re-refer to Com. on APPR with recommendation: To Consent Calendar. (Ayes 15. Noes 0.) ASCE position: Watch

AB 1329 (Nazarian – D) Requires the California Building Standards Commission (CBSC) to develop, adopt, and publish building standards requiring that new construction be designed and built to a functional recovery standard for earthquakes. 6/30/2021-From committee chair, with author’s amendments: Amend and re-refer to Committee. 7/8/2021-From Committee: Do pass and re-refer to Com. on APPR. (Ayes 7. Noes 2.)  ASCE position: Support

SB 83 (Allen – D) This bill would establish the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program through the collaboration primarily of the Coastal Conservancy and the I-Bank. 7/7/2021-July 7 set for first hearing. Placed on suspense file.  ASCE position: Watch


AB 1010 (Berman – D) Require architects to complete five hours of continuing education training on zero net carbon design for every two-year licensing period 6/22/2021-Read second time. Ordered to third reading.  ASCE position: Watch

SB 414 (Jones – R) Senate Bill 414 extends the time a local agency has to hear an appeal to 45 days after an appellant files a request and makes conforming changes. SB 414 also creates a different definition of “cadastral surveying” to mean a survey that creates, marks, defines, retraces, or reestablishes the boundaries and subdivisions of the public land of the United States, or any other field survey of a cadaster that is a public record, survey, or map of the extent and ownership of land. 7/16/2021-Approved by the Governor. Chaptered by Secretary of State. Chapter 106, Statutes of 2021.  ASCE position: Favor


AB 43 (Friedman – D) Grants Caltrans and local authorities greater flexibility in setting speed limits based on recommendations the Zero Traffic Fatality Task Force made in January 2020.  7/14/2021-Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Com. on APPR.  ASCE position: Watch

AB 1035 (Salas – D) This bill would delete the condition in the Road Maintenance and Rehabilitation Program requirement imposed on the department and those cities and counties to use advanced technologies and material recycling techniques to the extent possible. 7/15/2021-In Committee: Referred to suspense file.  ASCE position: OUA

AB 1147 (Friedman – D) Requires each Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) to submit a 2035 target action plan by July 1, 2023, to identify barriers in meeting regional greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction targets and establishes the Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS) Block Grant Program.  7/21/2021-In Committee: Hearing postponed by Committee.  ASCE position: Watch

AB 1499 (Daly – D) This bill authorizes the Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and regional transportation agencies (RTPAs) to use the design-build procurement method for transportation projects in California until 2034.  7/15/2021-From Committee: Do pass. (Ayes 7. Noes 0.) (July 15).  ASCE position: Support

SB 339 (Wiener – D) SB 339 extends the California Road Charge Pilot Program from 2023 until 2027. This extension will allow the California Transportation Commission (CTC) and California State Transportation Agency (CalSTA) to continue studying the viability of a road charge or a fee based on road usage to replace the current gas tax. 7/14/2021-July 14 set for first hearing. Placed on suspense file.  ASCE position: Support

SB 640 (Becker – D) This bill authorizes local governments to sponsor local streets and road projects jointly funded by the Road Repair and Accountability Act (SB 1, Beall, Chapter 5, Statutes of 2017). 7/16/2021-Approved by the Governor. Chaptered by Secretary of State. Chapter 108, Statutes of 2021.  ASCE position: Support

SB 671 (Gonzalez – D) This bill requires the CTC, in coordination with other state agencies, to develop a Clean Freight Corridor Efficiency Assessment and incorporate the recommendations into their respective programs for freight infrastructure; and codifies existing CTC guidelines for eligible projects for the Trade Corridor Enhancement Program (TCEP). 7/7/2021-From Committee: Do pass and re-refer to Com. on APPR. with recommendation: To consent calendar. (Ayes 11. Noes 0.) (July 7).  ASCE position: Watch

SB 674 (Durazo – D) This bill creates the California Jobs Plan (CAJP) Act of 2021, which requires private entities bidding on covered transportation-related contracts over $10 million, excluding contracts for road, bridge, or highway construction, to include as part of their application a CAJP form stating information about jobs created and retained. It specifies that the CAJP is scored as part of the overall application and included in the awarded contract as a material term. 7/7/2021-Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Com. on APPR.  ASCE position: Watch


SB 222 (Dodd – D) Would establish the Water Rate Assistance Program, with an unknown source of funding, administered by the Community Services Development Department (CSD) in consultation with the State Water Resources Control Board, to help provide water affordability assistance, for both drinking water and wastewater services, to low-income ratepayers. 7/15/2021-From committee with author’s amendments. Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Com. on APPR.  ASCE position: Watch

SB 273 (Hertzberg – D) Authorizes a municipal wastewater agency to acquire, construct, expand, operate, maintain, and provide facilities to manage stormwater and dry weather runoff. 7/8/2021-Read second time. Ordered to third reading.  ASCE position: Favor

SB 403 (Gonzalez – D) Authorizes the State Water Resources Control Board to consolidate a receiving water system and an at-risk water system under specified circumstances. 7/14/2021-July 14 set for first hearing. Placed on suspense file.  ASCE position: Watch

SB 552 (Hertzberg – D) Imposes drought and water shortage contingency planning requirements on state small water systems, counties, and specified state agencies. 7/5/2021-Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Com. on APPR.  ASCE position: Support

SB 559 (Hurtado – D) This bill would authorize state funding to help restore the capacity of the Friant-Kern Canal, Delta-Mendota Canal, San Luis Field Division of the California Aqueduct, and the San Joaquin Division of the California Aqueduct. 7/1/2021-Coauthors revised. From Committee: Do pass and re-refer to Com. on APPR. (Ayes 11. Noes 0.)  ASCE position: Support

Reports of Interest

The California Budget and Policy Center released its analysis of the “nearly final budget agreement,” it found that “significant investments in Californians keep state under Gann Limit,” which would have required the state to issue taxpayer refunds, highlights $8.1 billion for the second round of Golden State Stimulus payments, $300 million to “bolster public health infrastructure at the local level,” $2 billion “in flexible local funding to address homelessness” and $2.75 billion for Project Homekey “to acquire and rehab hotels and other buildings as housing for individuals experiencing homelessness.”


Appointments of Interest by the Governor

As director of the Office of Energy Infrastructure Safety, California Natural Resources Agency: Caroline Thomas Jacobs, El Cerrito, director of the Wildfire Safety Division at the California Public Utilities Commission since 2019.

To the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission: Karl Hasz, Mill Valley, president of Hasz Construction Inc. since 2001.

To California Architects Board: Tian Feng (reappointed), Walnut Creek, district architect, San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit District, since 2001; Ronald A. Jones (reappointed), Oakland, principal, Hunt Hale Jones Architects, since 1995; Mitra Kanaani, San Diego, professor, NewSchool of Architecture and Design, since 1992.



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