May 3, 2013

AB 823 held in Assembly committee without hearing

By Anthony L. Francois Senior Attorney

California’s Assembly Bill 823 has had a busy couple of weeks, culminating in a victory for property rights.  After cancelling two scheduled hearings in the Assembly Natural Resources Committee, the author amended the bill last week.  While the amendments were apparently aimed at reducing opposition to the bill, Pacific Legal Foundation’s analysis (updating our original letter) shows that the changes actually make the bill worse for property rights in various ways.

But, at least in some committees, making a bill worse for property rights can be an effective tactic for persuading California legislators to support it.

This Monday, the Assembly Natural Resources Committee passed the bill on a party line vote, and sent it on to the Assembly Agriculture Committee, chaired by AB 823’s author, Susan Talamantes Eggman (D – Stockton), for another hearing and vote.

However, her committee did not hear the bill this week, and today was the deadline for bills to be approved by policy committees and sent on for fiscal vetting in the Appropriations Committee.  If a bill is not passed its policy committees by today, then in the ordinary course of events it is held in the committee for the remainder of the year.  Absent a rule waiver or other procedural tactic, this means that AB 823 will not become law this year.

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