CSAC Bulletin Article

Governor Takes Final Action on AENR Bills

October 14, 2021

Sunday, October 10 was the deadline for final bill action by Governor Newsom. Following is an update on major bills of interest or concern for the Agriculture, Environment, and Natural Resources policy area that were among the 800+ bills awaiting action by Governor Gavin Newsom. For additional questions, please contact Catherine Freeman or Ada Waelder.

Bills Signed by Governor Newsom

AB 9 (Wood) – Community wildfire preparedness and mitigation. AB 9 establishes and codifies the Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Program with the goal of increasing regional capacity to create fire-adapted communities and landscapes. Often funding for fire prevention is limited to capital projects. Counties and their partners need funding to work both on direct projects and capacity building to make landscape-level improvements to resiliency. CSAC strongly supported AB 9, and it was signed by the Governor.

AB 480 (Carillo) Hazardous Substances. AB 480 strengthens the authority for local agencies to take immediate action against local threats to the public’s health and safety. This includes the ability for local jurisdictions to direct a facility, or a portion of a facility, to temporarily discontinue the operations that cause an exposure to hazardous waste or materials. CSAC supported AB 480, and it was signed by the Governor.

AB 818 (Bloom) – Labeling for non-disposable wipes. AB 818 establishes labeling requirements for wet wipes packaging so that Californians will know how to properly dispose of these products. Disposal information is inconsistent on wipe product labels, and some wipes are advertised as “flushable” when they are instead intended for the trashcan. Because many wet wipes are made from plastic they are not compatible with sewer systems and infrastructure, and can cause great damage. CSAC strongly supported AB 818, and it was signed by the Governor.

SB 109 (Dodd) – Office of Emergency Services: Office of Technology Research. SB 109 establishes the Office of Wildfire Technology Research and Development in the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES). This office will test and research tools and technology to prevent and suppress wildfires, and serve as the central point for the identification of emerging wildfire prevention technologies. CSAC supported SB 109, and it was signed by the Governor.

SB 343 (Allen) – Chasing Arrows truth in labeling. SB 343 prohibits the use of the chasing arrows symbol unless the material is actually recycled in most California communities and is routinely sold to manufacturers to make new products. CSAC supported SB 343, and it was signed by the Governor.

SB 619 (Laird) – Vehicle for local government relief for organic waste rule implementation. SB 619 delays enforcement and adds support for counties implementing the SB 1383 organic waste provisions. Cost estimates from CalRecycle over $20 billion, which will be born at the local level through increased costs and rates. Local governments need state support to implement statewide requirements for organic waste reduction. CSAC supported SB 619, and it was signed by the Governor.

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