Capitol Alert

AM Alert: Rush of new bills as session begins

rpench@sacbee.com

The first day back was dominated by talk of immigration and President-Elect Donald Trump, but there was plenty of other legislative activity yesterday as lawmakers began looking ahead to the next two years.

We’ve already covered Trump-themed measures to fund immigrant legal services, stymie a Muslim registry and offer a public vote on PEOTUS’s proposed border wall. In a first flurry of bills presaging a blizzard of hundreds more, some of the measures announced yesterday would:

▪ Impose a blackout on candidates sending taxpayer-funded mass mailings close to an election (SB 45).

▪ Create a program to protect help kids experiencing “toxic stress,” which is seen as a cause of higher mortality rates for black children (AB 11).

▪ Track and make publicly available the names of people who commit hate crimes (AB 39).

▪ Nix the sales tax on tampons, again, and make them free in schools and shelters (AB 9 and AB 10).

▪ Get more information about drug pricing, again (SB 17).

▪ Allow roadside testing devices to determine when people are driving while stoned, again (AB 6).

▪ Overhaul California’s cash bail system, increasingly a target of criminal justice reformers (AB 42 and SB 10).

BY THE NUMBERS: 63 percent is the share of inmates in county jails who are awaiting trial or sentencing. That’s about 46,000 Californians on any given day, according to Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Los Angeles, who offered those figures in announcing the bail bill.

VIDEO OF THE DAY: “This is our Day One” of resistance to Trump, a legislative leader said.

GROW AHEAD: So much happened on Election Night, it can be easy to forget that recreational weed is now legal in California. But rest assured various interest groups are well aware. A Capitol briefing on the effects of Proposition 64 today will marshal representatives of the California Police Chiefs Association, the California Cannabis Industry Association, the League of California Cities and the California State Association of Counties. It’s sponsored by Weedmaps, which donated $750,000 to the legalization effort and is one of the businesses that stands to profit from a green rush. In room 112 at 10 a.m.

While that’s going on, officials from the California Highway Patrol, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the California Cannabis Industry Association (again) will be talking about the dangers of driving while altered by substances other than alcohol. Stoned driving became a prominent issue in the Proposition 64 campaign, you’ll recall, and the law has the CHP develop guidelines for gauging intoxication instead of imposing a standard akin to a blood alcohol limit. The talk kicks off at 10 a.m. at Memorial Auditorium.

NEW CLIMATE: Climate change is one of the policy areas where California’s stance could clash with that of the next president. It was the only issue Gov. Jerry Brown specifically mentioned in appointing a new California attorney general. Today the California State Lands Commission will be talking about a new Offshore Renewable Energy Task Force, a collaboration with the feds promoting renewable energy projects off the coast of California as part of what an official called “the Obama Administration’s commitment to combating the effects of climate change.” But the next phase will happen under the administration of Trump, who has questioned the reality of climate change and put together an energy platform calling for offshore leasing on federal lands while advocating increased oil, gas and coal extraction. Officials will discuss what happens next at 1020 11th Street, starting at 10 a.m.

Jeremy B. White: 916-326-5543, @CapitolAlert

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