Capitol Alert

AM Alert: Republicans take another stab at cap-and-trade gas exemption

The Eastcoast filling station in Pennsauken, N.J., on Dec. 18, 2014.
The Eastcoast filling station in Pennsauken, N.J., on Dec. 18, 2014. The Associated Press

Efforts last year to delay bringing transportation fuels under California’s cap-and-trade program were a bust. Despite concerns raised by industry groups and moderate Democrats, the new regulation went into effect on Jan. 1, part of the state’s sweeping 2006 law aimed at reducing carbon emissions blamed for climate change.

As gas prices soar across the state, however, Republicans lawmakers are trying to revive the issue. Assemblyman Jim Patterson, R-Fresno, has introduced legislation that would exempt oil and gas from cap-and-trade entirely.

Several Assembly members, as well as the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association and the National Federation of Independent Business/California, will join Patterson in support of his AB 23, 10:30 a.m. on the west steps of the Capitol. The bill is set to appear before the Assembly Natural Resources Committee today, where it will likely die.

VIDEO: California’s unemployment rate is down, but the entire state isn’t benefiting from the economic recovery, Dan Walters says.

JUSTICE IN THE HOUSE: As the budget process winds on, few recipients of state funding will have as direct a line to those who hold the purse strings as the judicial branch does today. Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye will deliver her annual State of the Judiciary address before a joint session of the Legislature, 4 p.m. in the Assembly chambers. Last year, she warned that California faces a “civil rights crisis” because of cuts to the courts.

BACK TO THE FUTURE: California is already a leader in efforts to address climate change, but Gov. Jerry Brown is challenging the state to take things even further. After being sworn in for his fourth term in January, he proposed an ambitious plan to reduce petroleum use in cars by as much as 50 percent within 15 years and increase the proportion of electricity California derives from renewable sources to one-half from one-third. Can the state reach these goals? And how will it impact life in California? The Public Policy Institute of California hosts a panel discussion, noon at the Sheraton Grand Hotel on J Street, featuring San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Ken Alex, director of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research.

SINKING SHIP: Looking for the latest news on California’s most recent technology disaster? The Senate Business, Professions and Economic Development Committee and the Assembly Business and Professions Committee are due for an update on the Department of Consumer Affairs’ BreEZe system, 9 a.m. in Room 4203 of the Capitol. The hearing also includes sunset reviews of several department licensing boards, including the troubled Board of Registered Nursing, which may be on the bubble.

GOV EMERITUS: We haven’t heard much from former Gov. Pete Wilson lately, but he pops up in San Jose tonight for the Santa Clara County Republican Party’s annual Lincoln Dinner, 6 p.m. at Club Auto Sport, where he will offer his thoughts on the future of the state.

CELEBRATIONS: Happy belated birthday to state Sen. Anthony Cannella, R-Modesto, who turned 46 yesterday, and Secretary of State Alex Padilla, who turned 42.

Call The Bee’s Alexei Koseff, (916) 321-5236. Follow him on Twitter @akoseff.