Priority Legislation List – 2008

2008 Priority Legislation List

As of 6/10/08

The Los Angeles County Democratic Party supports the following bills:

AB 1409: Education: Concurrent Enrollment for High School Students at Community Colleges
Asm. Anthony Portantino
The bill would phase in a removal of restrictions on a pupil’s ability to concurrently enroll in a K-12 public school and a California Community College.

AB 2040: Education: Special Education Assessment for High School Diploma – Signed
Asm. Speaker Emeritus Fabian Nunez
The bill would require the State Board of Education to establish a standardized evidence-based assessment process under which students with disabilities who are unable to pass the California High School Exit Exam may submit evidence – such as other assessments or portfolios of previously completed work – that demonstrate the student has mastered the same skills and knowledge required to pass the exit exam. Students who complete all other high school graduation requirements and whose evidence demonstrates that have mastered the same skills and knowledge tested in the exit exam will be granted a high school diploma.

AB 2302: Education: Specialist Credentials for Teaching Children with Autism – Signed
Asm. Speaker Karen Bass
This bill would authorize the holder of a level 1 education specialist credential who is authorized to provide instruction to individuals with mild and moderate disabilities to provide instruction to pupils with autism.

ACR 21: Education: Urges UC to Partner with HBCU for Student Exchange
Asm. Anthony Portantino
The bill would request the University of California (UC) to establish academic partnerships (e.g., joint degree programs) with one or more institutions classified as Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

AB 1127: Environment/Water: Perchlorate – Rialto Drinking Water
Asm. Wilmer Carter
This bill would allow the Department of Public Health (DPH) to contract with the Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority (SAWPA) to assess and treat perchlorate contamination in the vicinity of the City of Rialto. Expresses the Legislature’s findings and declarations that state funds may be advanced to provide the citizens in the Rialto area with pure and potable water.

AB 1860: Environment: Unsafe Products: Recall or Warning – Signed
Asm. Jared Huffman
This bill will require immediate removal of recalled toys and other products from the market. This bill creates a comprehensive system to protect consumers from manufacture to past the point of sale, prohibits the sale of recalled products, imposes fines against those who sell recalled products, requires recalled products to be either retrofitted or properly disposed of, and establishes a notification system for past and present consumers.

AB 2916: Environment: LEED Gold Green Standard for State Buildings
Asm. Speaker Emeritus Fabian Nunez
This bill would declare the Legislature’s intent to require that all buildings owned or leased by the state meet the standards of the United States Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

AB 3018: Environment/Economy: Green Collar Job Council – Signed
Asm. Speaker Emeritus Fabian Nunez
The bill would create the Green Collar Job Council (GCJC). The GCJC would require the Secretary of the Labor and the Workforce Development Agency, in consultation with representatives from various public and private groups, to develop a comprehensive array of programs, strategies, and resources to address the workforce needs stemming from California’s growing green economy. AB 3018 seeks to provide a comprehensive approach ahead of the massive green economy expansion. It recognizes the need to coordinate and address strategies, funding, existing and new programs, and workforce training from new partnerships among the federal and state government, labor, private and public businesses and community organizations.

SB 1020: Environment: Recycling Goal Increase
Sen. Alex Padilla
This bill requires the California Integrated Waste Management Board to develop a plan to achieve a 75% statewide rate of solid waste diversion from landfills and other disposal facilities. Develop, by July 1, 2009, a strategic and comprehensive plan to achieve the 75% statewide diversion rate by January 1, 2020. Adopt policies, programs and incentives to ensure solid waste generated in California is source reduced, recycled or composted at a 60% rate by December 21, 2012 and at a 75% rate by January 1, 2020.

AB 368: Healthcare: Hearing Aids for Children – Vetoed
Asm. Wilmer Carter
This bill would require health care service plan (health plan) contracts and health insurance policies to offer coverage for hearing aids, up to $1,000, to all children, defined as enrollees and insured under 18 years of age, as specified.

AB 1554: Healthcare: Health Care Affordability
Asm. Dave Jones
Requires health care service plans licensed by the Department of Managed Health Care and health insurers certificated by the California Department of Insurance, effective January 1, 2009, to submit a rate application for approval by the respective regulator for any increase in the rate charged to a subscriber or insured, as specified. Imposes on DMHC and CDI specific rate approval criteria, timelines, and hearing and notice requirements.

AB 1945: Healthcare: Regulatory Approval Before Rescinding, Canceling, or Limiting Insurance – Vetoed
Asm. Hector De La Torre
Requires a health care service plan or disability insurer who sells health insurance (health insurer) to get regulatory approval prior to rescinding, canceling or limiting a plan contract or policy, and requires the Director of the Department of Managed Health Care and the Commissioner (Insurance Commissioner) of the California Department of Insurance to establish and require health plans and health insurers to use a single or standard application form.

AB 2234: Healthcare: Expand Women’s Access to Breast Cancer Screenings
Asm. Anthony Portantino
This bill would greatly expand women’s access to breast cancer screening and require the latest technological advances in early detection methods be used. The current rules and regulations on breast cancer screening amount to a “one-size-fits-all” policy that ignores a number of potential risk factors for women.

AB 2716: Healthcare: Healthy Families, Healthy Workplaces Act
Asm. Fiona Ma
Requires all employers in California to provide a minimum number of paid sick days. Workers can use sick days for their own health condition, to care for a family member’s health condition, and for leave related to domestic violence, sexual assault, or stalking. Workers earn 1 hour of paid sick time for every 30 worked. Small employers (10 employees or less) may limit workers to using 5 paid sick days per year. All other employers may limit workers to using 9 paid sick days per year, and are prohibited against discriminating against workers who use paid sick days. The department of Industrial Relations will administer and enforce the requirements of the Act.

SB 890: Higher Education: Early Commitment to College Act – Signed
Sen. Jack Scott
This bill establishes the voluntary Early Commitment to College program designed to increase college preparation for low-income K-12 pupils. It provides participating pupils a community college fee waiver for two or more years of enrollment, as long as the pupil is a California resident and continues to show financial need on the free application for federal student aid. The program would sunset in 2020.

AB 2386: Labor: Farm Worker Protection – Vetoed
Asm. Speaker Emeritus Fabian Nunez
Under existing law, a petition for election of labor representation may be filed with the Agricultural Labor Relations Board by an agricultural employee, a group of agricultural labor employees, or a labor organization acting on behalf of agricultural employees, as prescribed. Existing law requires the board to conduct an investigation into the allegations made in the petition upon receipt of the petition. If the board finds reasonable cause to believe that a bona fide question of representation exists, existing law requires the board to direct a representation election to be held by secret ballot, as prescribed. Unless a valid challenge is filed against the initial petition, as prescribed, existing law requires the board to certify the election. This bill would make technical, non-substantive changes to these provisions.

AB 2070: Public Safety: Keeping Families Together – Signed
Asm. Speaker Karen Bass
The bill would allow the juvenile court, in limited circumstances, to extend services to support the reunification of a child with his or her parent or guardian (referenced as parent(s) through rest of analysis) up to a period of 24 months from the date the child was originally removed.

AB 2423: Public Safety: Remove Barriers to Employment for Ex-Offenders – Signed
Asm. Speaker Karen Bass
This bill would authorize the Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians of the State of California, the Veterinary Medical Board, the Structural Pest Control Board, and the Director of Consumer Affairs, to issue a probationary license or registration to an ex-offender applicant. When considering the probationary license or registration, an applicant with a dismissed conviction must provide proof of that dismissal and there must have been no subsequent criminal convictions. Either 3 years must have passed since the dismissal of the criminal conviction or at least 5 years since the person completed his or her sentence.

AB 2541: Public Safety: Re-Entry and Recidivism Reform Act – Vetoed
Asm. Speaker Karen Bass
The bill would authorize a superior court, until January 1, 2012, to develop and operate a deferred entry of judgment reentry program targeted at preventing recidivism among low-level drug offenders or any other type of offender that the court deems appropriate. It authorizes, until January 1, 2012, no more than 3 superior courts to develop and implement a reentry court system. The bill would specify the characteristics of a reentry court and would require the presiding judge, district attorney, public defender, Board of Parole Hearings, and Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to enter into an agreement about the jurisdiction of the court, as specified.

AB 2762: Social Justice/Public Safety: Larry’s Law – Anti-GLBT Discrimination Law
Asm. Mike Eng
Over the last few years, California has experienced an alarming increase in bias-motivated incidents in public schools. One egregious incident includes the tragic murder of LGBT teenager, Lawrence King, at E.O. Green Junior High School in Oxnard, CA. To prevent such hate based violence, this bill will require schools to establish a protocol for reporting threats of violence that are make between students. In addition, the bill establishes a pilot project grant program to help integrate inter-group relations in the existing curriculum.

AB 2947: Social Justice: Elder and Dependent Adult Abuse Law – Vetoed
Asm. Mike Eng
This bill would prohibit facilities, such as residential care facilities, from forcing elderly and disabled residents, as a condition of admission, to give up their legal rights in cases of elder or dependent adult abuse. It is increasingly common for facilities such as Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly to include such “pre-dispute binding arbitration” provisions in admission materials. Consumers, particularly the elderly and disabled, should never be required to surrender basic civil protections against abuse to secure a bed in a nursing home or in a residential care facility.

AB 190: Transportation: Veterans Metered Parking Exemption Program – Signed
Asm. Speaker Karen Bass
The bill would allow veterans whose vehicles display license plates honoring Pearl Harbor Survivors, Legion of Valor recipients, former American Prisoners of War, Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, or Purple Heart recipients to park their vehicles that weigh not more than 6,000 pounds gross weight, without charge, in any metered parking space.

ACA 10: Transportation: Transportation Funding Vote – Change From 2/3 to 55%
Asm. Mike Feuer
This measure would create an additional exception to the 1% limit on ad valorem tax on real property for a city or county, special taxes, and or debt if it is to pay for bonded indebtedness, incurred to fund specified transportation infrastructure that is approved by 55% of the voters of the city, county, or city and county, as appropriate. Local entities will be better able to generate much needed revenue to maintain local streets and roads.

SB 974: Transportation/Environment: Port Trucking Fee – Vetoed
Sen. Alan Lowenthal
The bill would impose a $30 fee on each shipping container processed at the Ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Oakland to fund congestion management and air quality improvement projects related to the ports.

The Los Angeles County Democratic Party opposes the following bills:

AB 2812: Immigration: State of Emergency
Asm. Jim Silva (R – Huntington Beach)
This bill would add “illegal immigration” to the list the Governor can use to declare a state of emergency at the state or local level.

AJR 44: Immigration: Repeal of Fourteenth Amendment Section of the U.S. Constitution
Asm. Bob Huff (R – Diamond Bar)
This resolution would urge Congress to pass a bill circulating in Congress that would repeal the section of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution allowing for birthright citizenship. The Amendment grants citizenship for babies born in the U.S., regardless of the status of their parents.

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