On May 18 the Assembly and Senate Appropriations Committees held their respective Suspense File hearings. The purpose of the suspense file is for legislators to decide which fiscally significant bills will move forward to the floor of each house and which bills will be held in committee. The Suspense File enables legislators to review the fiscal impacts of a bill as it relates to the big picture of legislative priorities for the year. If a bill is determined to cost over $50,000 or more to the General Fund or $150,000 to a special fund a bill is sent to the Suspense File for consideration. CSDA legislative staff monitored the hearings for both committees.
A total of 755 bills were listed on the Assembly Suspense file, with 534 bills pass Appropriations Committee as either “do pass” or “do pass as amended.” The Senate had 416 bills on suspense, and 326 bills were passed as either “do pass” or “do pass as amended.” These bills will proceed to the floor of their respective" chambers for and must be approved by their house of origin before June 2.
One particular success was AB 1637 (Irwin), which would require local governments to migrate websites and email addresses to domains ending in “.gov” or “.ca.gov.” CSDA and its coalition partners have been working hard advocating an Oppose Unless Amended position on the bill. Special districts’ cost concerns were prominently highlighted in the Assembly Appropriations Committee analysis of the bill. Special districts are now excluded from the bill’s requirements due to amendments taken to the bill when it passed off the Suspense File.
Below is a list of significant Assembly bills tracked by CSDA that passed out of the Assembly Appropriations Committee from the Suspense File:
- AB 30 (Ward) Atmospheric Rivers: Research, Mitigation, and Climate Forecasting Program.
- AB 83 (Lee) Political Reform Act of 1974: Contributions and expenditures by foreign influenced business entities.
- AB 249 (Holden) Water: schoolsites: lead testing: Conservation. Amended to limit to Title 1 schools and other amendments.
- AB 265 (Boerner) Property tax postponement: Senior Citizens and Disabled Citizens Property Tax Postponement Fund.
- AB 270 (Lee) Political Reform Act of 1974: Public campaign financing.
- AB 296 (Rodriguez) Office of Emergency Services: 9-1-1 Public Education Campaign. Amended to strike authorization to use federal grant funds or state funds upon appropriation.
- AB 297 (Vince Fong) Wildfires: Local assistance grant program: advance payments.
- AB 338 (Aguiar-Curry) Public works: Definition.
- AB 469 (Vince Fong) California Public Records Act Ombudsperson.
- AB 504 (Reyes Gomez) State and local public employees: labor relations: disputes.
- AB 513 (Rodriguez) California Individual Assistance Act.
- AB 520 (Santiago) Employment: Public entities.
- AB 573 (Eduardo Garcia) Organic waste: Meeting recovered organic waste product procurement targets. Amended to limit the scope of the bill.
- AB 610 (Holden) Youth Transit Pass Pilot Program: Free youth transit passes. Amended to allow students to receive fare free transit and allocate funds based on students in the county.
- AB 764 (Bryan) Local redistricting. Amended to strike non-consolidated hearing requirement and streamline other requirements.
- AB 869 (Wood) Hospitals: Seismic safety compliance.
- AB 1248 (Bryan) Local redistricting: Independent redistricting commission. Amended to increase population threshold for school districts and community college districts to form independent redistricting commissions.
- AB 1297 (Quirk-Silva) Public restrooms.
- AB 1484 (Zbur) Temporary public employees. Amended to clarify application to retired annuitants.
- AB 1548 (Hart) Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund: Grant program: recycling infrastructure projects.
- AB 1594 (Eduardo Garcia) Medium-and heavy-duty zero emission vehicles: public agency utilities. Amended to remove requirement for CARB to analyze vehicle specifications
- AB 1637 (Irwin) Local government: Internet websites and email addresses. Amended to limit the scope of the bill to cities to counties, thereby excluding special districts from the bill’s requirements to migrate local government websites and email addresses to .gov or .ca.gov domains, and to extend deadlines.
Below is a list of significant Senate bills tracked by CSDA that passed out of the Senate Appropriations Committee from the Suspense File:
- SB 24 (Umberg) Political Reform Act of 1974: Public campaign financing.
- SB 29 (Glazer) The Political Reform Act of 1974: Fair Political Practices Commission: political reform education program.
- SB 248 (Newman) Political Reform Act of 1974: Disclosures: candidate experience.
- SB 252 (Gonzalez) Public retirement systems: Fossil fuels: Divestment.
- SB 321 (Ashby) Libraries: Local Library Partnership Program.
- SB 328 (Dodd) Political Reform Act of 1974: Contribution limits. Amended to make contribution limits effective January 1, 2025.
- SB 366 (Caballero) The California Water Plan: Long-term supply targets. Amended to clarify that the targets are for planning purposes and only to include specified demand management and financing.
- SB 399 (Wahab) Employer communications: Intimidation.
- SB 470 (Alvarado-Gil) Water: Urban Water Community Drought Relief program: Small Community Drought Relief program: High fire hazard and very high fire hazard severity zones.
- SB 532 (Wiener) California Workforce Development Board: minimum wage and housing. Amended to authorize smaller font when additional ballot cards are needed.
- SB 577 (Hurtado) California Fire Service Training and Education Program: California Fire and Arson Training Act: Fees.
- SB 613 (Seyarto) Organic waste: Reduction goals: Local jurisdictions: Low-population exemption.
- SB 623 (Laird) Workers’ compensation: Post-traumatic stress disorder.
- SB 745 (Cortese) The Drought-Resistant Buildings Act.
- SB 747 (Caballero) Land use: economic development: Surplus land. Passed with amendments to allow housing element compliant jurisdictions to declare exempt surplus land and other changes.
- SB 753 (Caballero) Cannabis: Water resources.
- SB 769 (Gonzalez) Local government: Fiscal and financial training.
- SB 778 (Ochoa Bogh) Excavations: Subsurface installations.
Below is a list of significant Assembly Bills that were held in the Assembly Appropriations Committee:
- AB 453 (Cervantes) District-based elections.
- AB 625 (Aguiar-Curry) Forest biomass: Management: Emissions: Energy.
- AB 735 (Berman) Workforce: Development: Utility careers.
- AB 909 (Hoover) Solid Waste Disposal and Codisposal Site Cleanup Program.
- AB 1056 (Davies) Department of Parks and Recreation: California Youth Water Safety State Grant.
- AB 1045 (Hart) Hazardous materials: Public notices.
Below is a list of significant Senate Bills that were held in the Senate Appropriations Committee:
- SB 23 (Caballero) Water supply and flood risk reduction projects: Expedited permitting.
- SB 563 (Archuleta) Air pollution control districts and air quality management districts: dependent and independent special districts: Funding.
- SB 634 (Becker) Low Barrier Navigation Center: Opportunity housing: Use by right: Building standards.
To access detailed analysis of CSDA’s priority bills on the Suspense Files, please refer to this report. CSDA will continue to collaborate with legislative offices, staff, coalition partners, and our members to ensure effective advocacy on behalf of special districts throughout the rest of legislative session.