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Read Previous Issues of The Political Observer Print Edition At:
Now Updated Through The October 2012 Issue
Knight v. Runner ~ 2012 Legislative Year in Review: page 6.
January's Social & Political Commentary by Amy Jingle!: page 3
"THE BERLIN WALL" by Verena Hawkins, Contributing Writer: page 6
Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, and the $2 Federal Reserve Note: page 2.
Knight vs. Runner
2012 Legislative Session in Review
Although both seated on the Republican side of the aisle –
In the 2012 legislative session, 996 Bills were passed by the legislature – 876 signed and 120 vetoed by Governor Brown. Of the 996 Bills, Runner missed 658 votes – 66% – due to illness. On the 338 Bills both Runner and Knight cast a recorded vote, The Political Observer discovered 28 instances (8%) where they cast votes opposite one another.
Below is the roster of legislation reaching the governor’s desk where the two
Following select Bills is the analysis as written by either the Senate or Assembly. Read Bill text at: www.leginfo.ca.gov/bilinfo
Assembly Bills Vote Knight Runner Brown
AB 345 Torres (D-Pomona) – Redevelopment. 78-0 & 28-4 Yes No Veto
Requires redevelopment agencies (RDAs) to post a copy of their annual report on the agency's or the community's Internet Web site.
AB 401 Ammiano (D-San Francisco) – School safety: Carl Washington School Safety and Violence Prevention Act.
58-20 & 36-2 No Yes Sign
AB 929 Wieckowski (D-Fremont) – Debtor exemptions: bankruptcy. 53-23 & 36-0 No Yes Sign
Increases the amounts of property exemptions for motor vehicles, jewelry, and tools of the trade that a bankruptcy debtor may elect to exempt such property from enforcement of a money judgment.
Specifically: 1) Increases the amounts of the following property exemptions under CCP Section 703.140: a) The exemption for the debtor's interest in a motor vehicle or vehicles is set at an amount not to exceed $4,800 for one or more vehicles (an increase from $2,775 for a single vehicle); b) The exemption for the debtor's aggregate interest in jewelry, held primarily for personal, family, or household use of the debtor, is set at an amount not to exceed $1,425 (an increase from $1,150); and, c) The exemption for the debtor's aggregate interest in any implements, professional books, or tools of the trade of the debtor or the trade of a dependent of the debtor, is set at an amount not to exceed $7,175 (an increase from $1,750). d) The exemption for the debtor's aggregate interest in real property or personal property used by a debtor or his dependent as a residence, or in a cooperative that owns property that the debtor or dependent uses as a residence, is set at an amount not to exceed $24,060 (an increase from $17,425).
2) Increases the income eligibility threshold for a judgment debtor or spouse aged 55 years or older to claim the $175,000 homestead exemption.
AB 976 Hall III (D-
64-9 & 27-9 No Yes Veto
Prohibits consultants advising Community Choice Aggregators (CCA) from bidding on CCA contracts. Specifically prohibits a CCA from purchasing electricity or energy services from an entity that provided analysis, advice, consulting, or other services to CCA prior to CCA notifying that CCA service will commence.
AB 1301 Hill (D-South San Francisco) – Retail tobacco sales: STAKE Act. 60-18 & 32-5 No Yes Sign
Repeals and recasts the Board of Equalization's (BOE) existing penalty structure for violations of the Stop Tobacco Access to Kids Enforcement (STAKE) Act, a statewide enforcement program related to the illegal sales of tobacco products to persons under the age of 18.
1) Require the Department of Public Health (DPH) to notify BOE of the third, fourth, or fifth violations it assesses against a person, firm or corporation that furnishes tobacco products or instruments to minors within 60 days of an uncontested violation or payment of the civil penalty for an uncontested violation. Requires DPH to provide BOE with unspecified information about the entity receiving the violation.
2) Repeal BOE's existing penalty structure for the STAKE Act and Penal Code Section 308 and instead requires BOE to levy an additional $250 civil penalty on an entity receiving a violation from DPH to be deposited into a specified fund.
3) Delete the Assembly's revised schedule for BOE action in response to a violation of the STAKE Act, and instead requires BOE to suspend or revoke the entity's license in the following manner:
a) A 45-day suspension for a third violation at the same location within five years,
b) A 90-day suspension for a fourth violation at the same location within five years, and,
c) Revocation of the license for a fifth violation at the same location within five years.
4) Repeals existing law that allows a licensee to appeal a BOE decision to suspend or revoke a license in writing within 30 days after the notice of the suspension or revocation.
5)Requires BOE to provide a licensee with at least 10 days written notice of a pending suspension or revocation, except where specified, and an opportunity to appeal the suspension or revocation and the civil penalty, but only for the purpose of correcting a mistake or clerical error.
6) Repeals existing law stipulating that convictions of violations by a retailer at one retail location cannot be accumulated against other locations of that same retailer.
7) Repeals existing law stipulating that convictions of violations accumulated against a prior retail owner at a licensed location cannot be accumulated against a new retail owner at the same location.
AB 1432 Mitchell (D-
Requires a parent or guardian of a child under 14 years of age who knows or should have known that the child has died to notify a public safety agency, as defined, within 24 hours of the time that the parent or guardian knew or should have known that the child has died, and to notify law enforcement within 24 hours of the time that a parent or guardian knows or should have known that the child is a missing person and that there is evidence that the child is a person at risk, except as specified. The bill would make a violation of those provisions a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year, or by a fine not exceeding $1,000, or by both that fine and imprisonment. The bill would also provide that these provisions shall not preclude prosecution under any other provision of law.
AB 1518 Perea (D-Fresno) – Weighmasters: automated weighing systems. 60-16 & 33-1 No Yes Sign
Authorizes a weighmaster weighing any vehicle moving certain construction materials, to use an unattended weighing system to weigh the vehicle and issue a weighmaster certificate to buyers who opt to utilize the unattended system under specified conditions.
AB 1674 Ma (D-San Francisco) – Child custody: visitation. 59-19 & 23-10 Yes No Sign
AB 1680 Wieckowski (D-Fremont) – Dissenting shareholders' rights. 58-18 & 37-0 No Yes Sign
This bill makes various changes to California's dissenter rights law by establishing that the fair market value of both public and private companies as of the day of, and immediately prior to the first announcement of the terms of the proposed reorganization or short-form merger, and eliminates the provision making holders of publicly traded shares only eligible to receive the fair market value of their dissenting shares if five percent or more of the shares are dissenting shares.
AB 1770 Lowenthal (
This bill clarifies that the California Transportation Financing Authority (CTFA) may approve rail projects that are, or include, rolling stock, and provides that a project may be eligible for financing under CTFA if it is owned or operated, rather than owned and operated, by Caltrans or other project sponsor.
48-23 & 34-1 No Yes Sign
Excludes from property tax reassessment a transfer of co-tenancy interest in a principal residence if the principal residence was owned by two individuals and was transferred to one of those individuals upon the death of the other, with the survivor obtaining sole ownership of that property.
AB 1886 Chesbro (D-Eureka) – Aquaculture. 51-26 & 36-0 No Yes Sign
Increases the regulatory fees for aquaculture facilities and expands the duties of the aquaculture program coordinator position within the Department of Fish and Game.
AB 2040 Swanson (D-Oakland) – Prostitution: human trafficking: expungement. 49-21 & 36-0 No Yes Sign
Provides that a person adjudicated a ward of the court for an offense involving an act of prostitution, may upon reaching 18 years of age, petition the court to have his or her record sealed without requiring the person to show that he or she has not been convicted of a felony or of any misdemeanor involving moral turpitude, or that rehabilitation has been attained to the satisfaction of the court.
AB 1955 Block (D-San Diego) – Public postsecondary education: campus law enforcement agency and student liaison.
76-2 & 25-10 Yes No Sign
This bill requires the California State University (CSU) Board of Trustees, and requests the University of California (UC) Board of Regents, to designate an individual at each campus to serve as a liaison between campus law enforcement agencies and students exercising rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and the California Constitution.
AB 2180 Alejo (D-Salinas) – Local health care districts: employment contracts. 52-26 & 30-6 No Yes Sign
If a health care district enters into a written employment agreement with a hospital administrator, including a hospital administrator who is designated as a chief executive officer, the written employment agreement shall include all material terms and conditions agreed to between the district and the hospital administrator regarding compensation, deferred compensation, retirement benefits, severance or continuing compensation after termination of the agreement, vacation pay and other paid time off for illness or personal reasons, and other employment benefits that differ from those available to other full-time employees.
AB 2201 Bradford (D-Inglewood) – Elder California Pipeline Safety Act of 1981: civil penalties.
57-17 & 38-0 No Yes Sign
This bill increases the civil penalties associated with violations of the Elder California Pipeline Safety Act of 1981 from $10,000 per day of violation to $200,000 and from $500,000 to $2 million for any related series of violations.
AB 2279 Swanson (D-Oakland) – School districts: emergency apportionments: trustees. 79-1 & 24-12 Yes No Sign
Authorizes the State Superintendent of Public Instruction to remove a state-appointed trustee from a school district that received an emergency loan after three years, provided the district has adequate fiscal systems in place and the Superintendent determines the district's future compliance with its fiscal plan is probable.
AB 2284 Chesbro (D-Eureka) – Irrigation. 54-23 & 38-0 No Yes Sign
Imposes an additional civil penalty for cultivating marijuana within a state park, and allows law enforcement to stop any vehicle transporting agricultural irrigation supplies into a specified area, if agricultural irrigation supplies are in plain view.
AB 2396 Committee on Arts, Entertainment, Sports, Tourism – Employment of infants: entertainment industry.
55-20 & 35-0 No Yes Sign
This bill specifies that prior to obtaining a temporary work permit, the parent or guardian of an infant 15 days to one month old, must obtain the medical certification of a physician as currently required by law, but clarifies that a work permit may not be issued until the doctors permission has been obtained and confirmed.
AB 2440 Lowenthal (
55-20 & 37-0 No Yes Sign
AB 2610 Skinner (D-Berkeley) – Tenants: foreclosure and unlawful detainer. 69-9 & 36-0 No Yes Sign
Improves notice to tenants in foreclosed properties. Specifically: 1) Revises the requirement of existing law providing 60 days' notice to instead provide, in the case of a month-to-month lease or periodic tenancy, for 90 days' notice for tenants in a foreclosed property.
2) Specifies that a tenant holding possession under a residential lease of a rental housing unit at the time the property is sold in foreclosure shall have the right to possession until the end of the lease term. This provision would not apply if the new owner will occupy the property as his or her primary residence, the lessee is the borrower or the child, spouse or parent of the borrower, the lease was not the result of an arm's-length transaction or the rent is substantially less than the fair market rent for the property, unless reduced or subsidized by federal, state or local law. In either case, however, the new owner must give the tenant a 90-day notice to vacate.
3) Revises existing law's notice that is sent to tenants when a notice of sale is posted on the property to ensure that it accurately reflects the revisions proposed above. This bill would provide that the changes in this notice would not become operative until March 1, 2013, or 60 days following the issuance of an amended new translation by the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA), whichever occurs later.
4) Extends the January 1, 2013 sunset date that would otherwise apply to these sections and the related provisions of existing law for six years.
SB 419 Simitian (D-Palo Alto) – Solid waste: home-generated sharps. 79-0 & 32-8 Yes No Veto
This bill requires pharmaceutical manufacturers to provide their existing safe home-generated sharps management plans to the Department of Resource Recovery and Recycling DRRR) electronically and requires the manufacture to make them readily accessible on their Web sites.
SB 628 Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco) – Acupuncture: regulation. 59-16 & 36-0 No Yes Sign
Codifies an existing regulation promulgated by the Acupuncture Board (Board) related to an acupuncturist's permitted use of the title "Doctor." Specifically, this bill states that it is unprofessional conduct for an acupuncturist to use the title "Doctor" or "Dr." in the following instances:
1) In connection with the practice of acupuncture unless he or she holds a license authorizing its use, or an earned doctorate degree from an accredited, approved, or authorized educational institution under the California Private Postsecondary Education Act of 2009 in acupuncture, oriental medicine, a biological science, or field otherwise related to the practice of an acupuncturist authorized in the Acupuncture Licensure Act.
2) Without indicating the type of license or degree which authorizes its use.
SB 874 Hancock (D-Berkeley) – School districts: community college districts: parcel taxes: exemptions.
59-11 & 38-0 No Yes Sign
Allows school districts to exempt persons receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) from qualified special taxes.
SB 1001 Yee (D-San Francisco) – Political Reform Act of 1974: lobbyists and committees: fees.
60-16 & 32-5 No Yes Sign
Imposes fees on certain political committees and increases fees on lobbyists, with most of the resulting revenues to be used for the Secretary of State's (SOS's) online disclosure system. Specifically:
1) Requires each committee that qualifies as a committee by virtue of having received contributions totaling $1,000 or more in a calendar year (known as a recipient committee) to pay a fee of $50 per year to the SOS until the committee is terminated.
2) Imposes a penalty of $150 for failure to timely pay the fee in (1).
3) Increases, from $25 to $50, the annual fee each lobbying firm and lobbyist employer pays for each of their registered lobbyists, and makes imposition of this fee mandatory rather than discretionary.
4) Requires the Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) to enforce the above requirements.
5) Directs one-half of the monies collected pursuant to (3) to the General Fund and the other half of these revenues, plus the revenues generated through the fee in (1), to the newly established Political Disclosure, Accountability, Transparency, and Access Fund, which is to be used, upon appropriation by the Legislature, for maintenance, repair, and improvement of the SOS's online disclosure (Cal-Access) system.
SB 1303 Simitian (D-Palo Alto) – Vehicles: automated traffic enforcement systems. 62-12 & 24-14 Yes No Sign
Amends local government open meeting laws to authorize legal action against a legislative body to determine if certain ongoing or past actions of that body have violated those laws within the last nine months, instead of one year.
SB 1292 Liu (D-Pasadena) – School employees: principals: evaluation. Authorizes school districts to assess the performance of school principals and establishes provision to guide that evaluation process.
65-12 & 38-0 No Yes Sign
This bill authorizes school districts to evaluate principals annually for the first and second year of employment as a new principal in a district. Specifically, 1) Authorizes the governing board of a school district to identify who will conduct the evaluation of each principal. Further authorizes the governing board to determine the frequency of evaluations, as specified.
2) Authorizes criteria for effective school principal evaluations to be based upon the California Professional Standards for Educational Leaders (CPSEL), as specified.
3) Authorizes a school principal evaluation to include specified elements, including, but not limited to, pupil academic growth on multiple measures, effective and comprehensive teacher evaluations, instructional strategies, collaborative professional practices, effective school management, self-assessment, and consistent relationships with schoolsite staff, pupils, and parents.
4) Authorizes federal No Child Left Behind Act Title I (poor/needy pupils) and Title II (improving teacher and principal quality) funds and any other state and federal funds to be used to implement this measure.
SB 1549 Vargas (D-San Diego) – Transportation projects: alternative project delivery methods.
45-24 & 38-0 No Yes Sign
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