California Capitol Watch: State Legislators Representing Davis Introduce 38 Bills for 2021

By Eric Gelber

Davis is represented in the State Legislature by Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry and Senator Bill Dodd. Below is a quick rundown of the bills introduced by each of them for first year of the 2021-2022 legislative session.

By respective House rules, each member has a limited number of bills they may introduce in a two-year regular legislative session: 50 bills in the Assembly, 40 bills in the Senate. (The Assembly counts constitutional amendments, the Senate does not.)

Typically, a Member will introduce roughly half their bills each year of a two-year session. If all legislators introduced their allowed maximum allotment of bills, there would be 5,600 bills introduced per two-year session. In the last two-year session (2019-2020), there were approximately 5,423 bills introduced.

When a Member wants to author a new bill after the deadline for a given year, they typically repurpose one of their own bills or find a bill by another Member that won’t be going anywhere. In either case, this involves amending the bill to remove the current contents in their entirety and replacing them with the different provisions—referred to as a “gut and amend.”

As of the February 19th bill introduction deadline for 2021, Assemblymember Aguiar-Curry introduced 14 bills and Senator Dodd introduced 24 bills. The text of bills can be accessed at

Assemblymember Aguiar-Curry

  • AB 14: Would establish the “Internet for All Act of 2021” that would prioritize the deployment of broadband infrastructure in vulnerable and unserved rural and urban communities by extending the ongoing collection of funds deposited into the California Advanced Services Fund to provide communities with grants necessary to bridge the digital divide.
  • AB 32: Would continue the momentum for telehealth by indefinitely extending emergency provisions enacted during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic for the Medi-Cal program. Would require the Department of Health Care Services to convene an advisory group by January 2022 and conduct an analysis of “the benefits of telehealth in Medi-Cal, including an analysis of improved access for patients, changes in health quality outcomes and utilization, and best practices for the right mix of in-person visits and telehealth,” with a report of findings and recommendations due to the Legislature by June 2025.
  • AB 45: Would remove food, beverage, or cosmetic restrictions on the use of CBD derived from industrial hemp. Would provide that derivatives from industrial hemp are not considered adulterants, allowing products to be sold legally. Would ban smokable products containing industrial hemp.
  • AB 535: Would make it unlawful to falsely label a product as “California olive oil” or “California olives.” Would prohibit a false representation than an olive oil was produced from olives grown in a specific region of California unless at least 85% of the olive oil was produced from olives grown in that region.
  • AB 614: Would create the “Nesting Bird Habitat Incentive Program Account” for the purposes of encouraging landowners to voluntarily cultivate or retain upland cover crops, cereal grains, grasses, forbs, pollinator plants to provide waterfowl and other game bird nesting habitat cover and encouraging the use of agricultural lands for wildlife habitat.
  • AB 791: Would provide funding to expand access to Trauma-Informed Childcare training across the state for early learning and care professionals, including those working in centers, family childcare home, and other settings providing early learning and care services.
  • AB 843: Would authorize a community choice aggregator that provides electric service within the service territory of an electrical corporation to recover specified costs.
  • AB 880: Would establish the “Affordable Disaster Housing Revolving Development and Acquisition Program,” administered by the Department of Housing and Community Development, to cover the costs to develop or preserve affordable housing in the state’s declared disaster areas that have experienced damage and loss of homes occupied by or affecting lower income households. Would require community development financial institutions receiving awards through the program to issue short-term loans to nonprofit housing development corporations and other entities to fund the cost of developing dwelling units and transitional housing, childcare, after school care, and social service facilities that are integrally linked to the dwelling units.
  • AB 920: Would remove the authority of Orange, San Diego, and Ventura Counties to organize and establish cotton pest abatement districts.
  • AB 1086: Would require the Natural Resources Agency, in coordination with other state agencies, to prepare and submit to the Legislature, by January 1, 2023, a report that provides an implementation strategy that identifies specific measures needed to achieve the state’s organic waste, and related climate change and air quality, mandates, goals, and targets. The bill would require the implementation strategy to include, among other things, recommendations on policy and funding support for the beneficial reuse of organic waste.
  • AB 1100: Would require the Public Utilities Commission, following a fire- or disaster-related state of emergency or local emergency to collect specified information from telecommunications service providers relating to the provider’s efforts to repair or replace communications infrastructure that was damaged as a result of the emergency or disaster.
  • AB 1175: An apparent spot bill (placeholder bill) related to employee wages, hours, and working conditions.
  • AB 1264: For purposes of helping primary care clinicians, other health care professionals, including school-based professionals, and educators meet the mental health needs of children and adolescents stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, would require the California Health and Human Services Agency to establish, develop, implement, and administer a grant program to fund a maximum of eight grants that support pediatric behavioral health teleECHO (trademark) clinics to be administered and operated by eligible children’s hospitals.
  • ACA 1: Would, subject to voter approval, establish a Constitutional Amendment to lower the necessary voter threshold from a two-thirds supermajority to 55% to approve local general obligation bonds and special taxes for affordable housing and public infrastructure projects.

Senator Dodd

  • SB 13: Would extend to July 1, 2026 a pilot program for Napa and San Bernardino Counties authorizing a city or district within the county to provide new or extended services outside its jurisdictional boundary and outside its sphere of influence to support existing or planned uses involving public or private properties, subject to approval at a notice public hearing in which the local agency formation commission makes specified determinations.
  • SB 20: Would facilitate access to CalFresh benefits by eligible community college students by requiring notifying students who qualify for a waiver of the community college enrollment fee of their potential CalFresh eligibility under another exemption to the prohibition on CalFresh benefits to students.
  • SB 52: Would expand the definition of “sudden and severe energy shortage” under the California Emergency Services Act to include a “deenergization event,” defined as a planned power outage and would make a deenergization event one of those conditions constituting a state of emergency and a local emergency.
  • SB 99: Would enact the “Community Energy Resilience Act of 2021” requiring the State Energy Commission to develop and implement a grant program for local governments to develop community energy resilience plans to, among other things, ensure that a reliable electricity supply is maintained at critical facilities and identify areas most likely to experience a loss of electrical service.
  • SB 103: Would enact the “Uniform Faithful Presidential Electors Act,” requiring each elector and alternate elector to execute a pledge pursuant to which they promise to cast their electoral ballots for the presidential and vice presidential candidates to whom they are pledged or who are the candidates of the political party who nominated them, and would provide that an elector who casts their ballot in violation of the pledge automatically vacates the elector’s position, and would specify procedures for filling the vacant position with a substitute elector.
  • SB 109: Would establish the Office of Wildfire Technology Research and Development, within the Office of Emergency Services, to be responsible for studying, testing, and advising regarding procurement of emerging technologies and tools in order to more effectively prevent and suppress wildfires, and serving as the central organizing hub for the state government’s identification of emerging wildfire technologies.
  • SB 204:  Since the 1980s, industrial customers have contributed to grid reliability by curtailing manufacturing when capacity is scarce under an emergency system known as the Base Interruptible Program. During extreme heat in August and September, the California Public Utilities Commission twice called on large businesses to voluntarily reduce energy consumption, preventing more widespread outages that would have left nearly a million customers in the dark. However, an improved program could have further reduced blackouts. SB 204 would strengthen the commission’s mandate to call for energy use reductions, require participation from the state’s three largest utilities and improve incentives for compliance. [From Press Release]
  • SB 216: Would, until January 1, 2025, require specified contractors to obtain and maintain workers’ compensation insurance even if that contractor has no employees. Would, as of January 1, 2025, require all licensed contractors or applicants for licensure to obtain and maintain workers’ compensation insurance even if that contractor has no employees and would also prohibit the filing of a certificate of exemption.
  • SB 222: Would establish a water assistance fund for low-income rate payers experiencing economic hardship.
  • SB 223: Would expand protections and protocols for customers who are faced with having their water shutoff because of an inability to pay their bills.
  • SB 281: To reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 during the current pandemic and to further the objectives of the Money Follows the Peron Rebalancing Demonstration, would temporarily expand access to the Medi-Cal-funded California Community Transitions program providing assistance to people transitioning from institutional to community settings by modifying the requirement that the individual has resided in an inpatient facility for at least 90 days to instead provide that the individual has resided in an inpatient facility for at least 60 days.
  • SB 298: Would authorize any person that has a brewpub-restaurant license to exchange that license for a bona fide public eating place license with approval of the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, payment of a $100 exchange fee, and compliance with other specified provisions relating to the issuance of an original license.
  • SB 332: Would provide that a certified burn boss and a private landowner upon whose property a certified burn boss performs, supervises, or oversees a prescribed burn are not liable for damage or injury to property or persons that is caused by a prescribed burn authorized by law unless the prescribed burn was conducted in a grossly negligent manner.
  • SB 370: Would authorize the Department of Fish and Wildlife to utilize revenues from the Big Game Management Account, upon appropriation by the Legislature, to make grants to, reimburse, or enter into contracts or other agreements with public and private entities, including nonprofit organizations, and federally recognized Indian tribes for the use of the funds from the account for specified purposes, including those related to habitat conservation.
  • SB 389: Would authorize a bona fide public eating place holding an on-sale general license or on-sale license for beer and wine to sell alcoholic beverages for off-sale consumption under specified conditions, including that the beverages be sold in conjunction with meals prepared for pickup or delivery and be packaged in a container with a secure lid or cap.
  • SB 417: Would allow an air common carrier that carries interstate or foreign passengers on airplanes to purchase its alcoholic beverage inventory outside the state to bring alcoholic beverages into the state for the purpose of sale or service within the state without being subject to an importer’s license.
  • SB 440: Would authorize the California Earthquake Authority to invest funds in natural disaster mitigation efforts overseen by a joint-powers authority. Each year, funding would go toward hardening homes in wildfire prone communities, and would be invested in bracing older, multistory buildings that are known earthquake risks.
  • SB 451: Would extend from July 1, 2022 to January 1, 2023 the date by which the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery may approve recycling pilot projects designed to improve redemption opportunities in unserved convenience zones and would increase the number of pilot projects from 5 to 10.
  • SB 468: Would include an “electromagnetic pulse attack” among those conditions constituting a state of emergency or local emergency authorizing the Governor or appropriate local government to exercise certain powers in response to the emergency.
  • SB 494: Would exempt races that are part of the race card of the Delaware Handicap from the 50 per day limit on the authority of a thoroughbred racing authority or fair to distribute the audiovisual signal and accept wagers on the results of out-of-state thoroughbred races conducted in the U.S. on days on which there is no live racing being conducted in the state.
  • SB 556: Would revise the definition of a “utility pole” for purposes of existing law requiring a local publicly owned electric utility to make appropriate space and capacity on and in their utility poles and support structures available for use by cable television corporations, video service providers, and telephone corporations.
  • SB 561: Would require the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, when it annually adjusts its fees based on the California Consumer Price Index, to transmit the new fee list to the Chairpersons of the Assembly and Senate Committees on Governmental Organization.
  • SB 626: Would make changes to the procurement method utilized by the Department of Water Resources for projects for the construction of a facility or infrastructure related to water resources.
  • SB 717: Would exempt providers of custom rehabilitation equipment and custom rehabilitation technology services from specified Medi-Cal provider payment reductions that would otherwise apply.

Eric Gelber, now retired, is a 1980 graduate of UC Davis School of Law (King Hall). He has nearly four decades of experience monitoring, analyzing, and crafting legislation through positions as a disability rights attorney, Chief Consultant with the Assembly Human Services Committee, and Legislative Director of the California Department of Developmental Services.

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Disclaimer: the views expressed by guest writers are strictly those of the author and may not reflect the views of the Vanguard, its editor, or its editorial board.

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1 Comment

  1. Don Shor
    • AB 535: Would make it unlawful to falsely label a product as “California olive oil” or “California olives.” Would prohibit a false representation than an olive oil was produced from olives grown in a specific region of California unless at least 85% of the olive oil was produced from olives grown in that region.

    This may seem like an obscure bit of legislation, but I expect that it has its roots (pun intended) in a major disruption of the California olive industry that occurred a couple of years ago.

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