Wednesday, September 18, 2019

California has responded to Federal threats of increased oil and gas drilling by making it virtually impossible for any drilling to happen on or near protected lands by halting most pipeline leasing.

What is it?

Assembly Bill 342. Specifically designed to thwart plans by the Trump administration to increase oil and gas production on federal land, AB 342 will make it illegal for pipelines to cross over state land. As most federally protected areas, such as National Parks and Wilderness Areas, are adjacent to state owned land, drilling could not occur in most areas. Language in the bill also specifically mentions that no leasing authority can allow pipelines on any public land, even in tidelands and submerged lands.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

California is on the verge of having statewide rent control.

Assembly Bill 1482—which will bar landlords from hiking rents more than 5 percent, plus local inflation, in one year—was approved this afternoon in the state Assembly on a 46-22 vote. Inflation varies by region, but averages about 2.5 percent in California.

The bill now heads to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s desk; he has said he will sign it.

Monday, September 9, 2019

SACRAMENTO — California on Monday sought to block the Trump administration from allowing new oil and gas wells in national parks and wilderness areas in the state.

Any new oil or gas projects approved in federally protected areas would be prohibited from having their pipelines or other essential infrastructure cross state lands, under legislation approved by California lawmakers.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

McKITTRICK, Calif. — Near the jagged western edge of Kern County, where the Temblor Range gives way to a landscape of steam pipes, fuel lines and bobbing pump jacks, there’s a definite mood in this dusty little oil town: Defiance.

Hardly a day goes by without reports of the growing oil leak in nearby Cymric oil field. So far, more than 900,000 gallons of oil and brine have oozed from a Chevron Corp. well and filled a dry creek, creating a hazardous black lagoon.

The residents of McKittrick, population 145, understand why people are upset by the images. Also, there’s no avoiding the worry that prolonged exposure to crude oil might one day trigger health issues.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

SACRAMENTO – A proposed bill to promote the safety of e-scooters will likely not be introduced until the next session of the California state legislature, according to the communications director of Consumer Attorneys Association of California.

Eric Bailey said while the bill could still make it in this session, it's looking more like a two-year bill.

"This one it’s looking like though is going to be what they call a two-year bill, which means it’s not going to move forward this year and will very likely be taken up next year," Bailey said. "That said, nothing is ever done until the session is over. This doesn’t negate the possibility this might move, but it’s not looking very likely."

The bill, AB 1286, was introduced by Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi (D-Torrance).

Friday, July 12, 2019

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — California Gov. Gavin Newsom said Friday he wants to move the nation’s most populous state away from hydraulic fracturing, a day after he fired the state’s top oil and gas regulator for issuing twice as many fracking permits this year compared to last.

“I don’t think anyone that was paying attention, including the individual that’s no longer there, is unaware of my position on fracking,” Newsom told reporters. “I’ve been very explicit about it. The fact that they did not exercise consistency with that is one of the reasons he’s not there.”

Thursday, July 11, 2019

A bill that would create a Wildfire Fund to help utilities pay victims of future wildfires advanced out of committee Wednesday, now heading to the full Assembly.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — State lawmakers are facing a host of bills this week tackling various aspect of wildfire safety and utilities’ roles within that.

One of the most closely watched bills is Assembly Bill 1054, which would establish a $21 billion Wildfire Fund to help utilities pay claims from the victims of future wildfires. Money for that fund would come half from ratepayers and half from the utility companies. The bill would also establish stricter preventive safety requirements for utilities.