BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                        AB 91

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          (Without Reference to File)


          91 (Committee on Budget)

          As Amended  March 24, 2015

          Majority vote

          |ASSEMBLY:  |      | March 23,     |SENATE: |35-1  | March 25, 2015  |
          |           |      |2015           |        |      |                 |
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          |           |      |               |        |      |                 |
               (vote not relevant)

          Original Committee Reference:  BUDGET

          SUMMARY:  Amends the 2014-15 Budget Act to include new  
          appropriations to address the state's urgent drought needs.  This  
          bill, along with the companion trailer bill, AB 92 (Budget  
          Committee) of the current legislative session, proposes  
          expenditures of $1.059 million for drought-related activities.

          The Senate amendments delete the Assembly version of this bill,  
          and instead:


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          1)Accelerate the appropriation of $131.7 million (Proposition 1 of  
            2014) for the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) to  
            build on the existing water recycling grant program.  Potential  
            projects include feasibility studies, demonstration projects,  
            and larger scale water recycling projects.
          2)Accelerate the appropriation of $135.5 million (Proposition 1 of  
            2014) for the SWRCB to improve access to clean drinking water  
            for disadvantaged communities ($69 million) and help small  
            communities pay for wastewater treatment ($66 million). 

          3)Accelerate the appropriation of $14.6 million ($11.4 million  
            General Fund and $3.2 million Fish and Game Preservation Fund)  
            for the Department of Fish and Wildlife (DFW) to continue  
            critical state operations related to drought, such as fish  
            rescues, hatchery operations, fish and wildlife monitoring, and  
            responding to problems of human/wildlife conflict from animals  
            seeking food and water.

          4)Accelerate the appropriation of $11.6 million (General Fund) for  
            the Department of Water Resources (DWR) to continue to assess  
            current surface and groundwater conditions, expedite water  
            transfers, provide technical guidance to local water agencies,  
            and provide additional public outreach through the Save Our  
            Water campaign.  

          5)Accelerate the appropriation of $6.7 million (General Fund) and  
            $15.9 million (Cleanup and Abatement Account) for the SWRCB to  
            continue enforcement of drought-related water rights and water  
            curtailment actions and provide grants ($15 million) for  
            emergency drinking water projects, including hauled water,  
            bottled water, design and construction of connections to  
            adjacent public water systems, new wells and well  

          6)Appropriate $4 million (Cleanup and Abatement Account) for the  
            SWRCB to provide emergency safe drinking water to disadvantaged  


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            communities impacted by the drought.

          7)Accelerate the appropriation of $4.4 million (General Fund) to  
            the Office of Emergency Services for the State Operations Center  
            to continue to provide local communities with technical guidance  
            and disaster recovery support related to the drought.

          8)Accelerate the appropriation of $20 million (Greenhouse Gas  
            Reduction Fund) to the DWR for state and local water use  
            efficiency programs which reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.  

          9)Accelerate the appropriation of $10 million (Greenhouse Gas  
            Reduction Fund) to the California Department of Food and  
            Agriculture (CDFA) for agricultural water efficiency projects  
            that reduce GHG emissions.

          10)Appropriate $17 million and reappropriate $7 million (General  
            Fund), to the Department of Social Services to expand food  
            assistance to persons affected by the drought to include the  
            Counties of Imperial, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura,  
            and Coachella Valley in Riverside County.

          11)Appropriate $3 million (General Fund) for the Department of  
            Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE) to address critical  
            infrastructure deficiencies at remote fire stations that have  
            run out of water.

          12)Appropriate $2 million (General Fund) to the DFW for maximizing  
            water delivery and efficiency to key endangered species habitat,  
            endangered species, native fish and Delta monitoring, and water  
            delivery system projects.

          13)Appropriate $7.4 million (General Fund) to the DWR for  
            additional public outreach through the Save Our Water campaign,  


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            refining the modeling of turbidity flows in the Delta, and Local  
            Assistance ($5 million) to provide emergency drinking water  
            support for small communities, including addressing private well  

          14)Authorize funds for the removal of emergency rock barriers and  
            actions to minimize impacts of the barriers on affected aquatic  
            species in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, if necessary.

          15)Accelerate the appropriation of $4 million (Harbors and  
            Watercraft Fund) to the Department of Parks and Recreation,  
            Division of Boating and Waterways for efforts to manage and  
            control invasive aquatic plants within the Sacramento-San  
            Joaquin River Delta, its tributaries and the Suisun Marsh which  
            threaten water supply intake structures.

          16)Accelerate the appropriation of $200,000 (General Fund) to the  
            CDFA for economic analysis studies to determine the ongoing  
            impacts of California's drought on the state's agriculture  
            sector and identify potential solutions.

          17)Appropriate $4 million (General Fund) for the SWRCB and the DFW  
            to enhance instream flows in at least five stream systems that  
            support critical habitat for anadromous fish.  

          18)Accelerate the appropriation of $660 million (Proposition 1E of  
            2006) for the DWR to support flood protection activities.  
            Expenditures of these bond funds will be allocated to program  
            categories that are consistent with the resource allocation  
            recommendations of the Central Valley Flood Protection Plan for  
            prioritizing flood management projects.  Specifies that funds  
            shall be available for encumbrance and expenditure until June  
            30, 2020, and June 30, 2023, respectively. 

          Approve side agreement recently entered into by the administration  
          and state Bargaining Unit 19, represented by the American  


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          Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Health and  
          Social Services/Professional.  The addendum would compensate  
          Senior Psychologists, Psychologists, and Licensed Clinical Social  
          Workers working at the California Department of Corrections and  
          Rehabilitation institutions for certain standby and call back  
          duties. These agreements amend existing Memoranda of  
          Understandings (MOUs) but do not constitute new MOUs.  The  
          department is absorbing costs in the current year and no  
          additional appropriation authority is being requested at this  

          COMMENTS:  California is experiencing its fourth dry year in a row  
          - the worst drought in modern United States history and driest  
          January since the state began keeping records in 1895.  The Sierra  
          Nevada snowpack, which Californians rely on heavily during the dry  
          summer months for their water needs, is at a near record low.   
          Only in 1991 has the water content of the snow been lower. 

          California's drought conditions have resulted in dangerously low  
          levels of water in our reservoirs and groundwater aquifers and  
          have impacted every aspect of our environment and economy.  The  
          drought has imperiled drinking water supplies, our agricultural  
          sector, sensitive habitats, and greatly increased our risk of  
          wildfire.  Some have estimated the state has only about one year  
          of water left in its reservoirs.

          Since last February, the state has pledged over $870 million to  
          support drought relief, including   money for food to workers  
          directly impacted by the drought, funding to secure emergency  
          drinking water supplies for drought impacted communities and bond  
          funds for projects that will help local communities save water and  
          make their water systems more resilient to drought. 

          Last fall, the Legislature approved and the Governor signed  


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          legislation requiring local, sustainable groundwater management as  
          well as legislation to put a $7.5 billion water bond before  
          voters, which won bipartisan approval in the Legislature and was  
          approved overwhelmingly at the polls. 

          The purpose of this urgency drought relief package is to provide  
          immediate funding to help communities deal with the devastating  
          dry conditions affecting the state and to increase local water  
          supplies.  This bill accelerates many drought-related proposals in  
          the Governor's Budget and other Water Action Plan proposals aimed  
          at improving the state's water supply and storage through  
          infrastructure investments, improving the management of  
          groundwater, and addressing water quality issues, particularly in  
          disadvantaged communities.  This bill also includes additional  
          emergency funding for drinking water supplies for disadvantaged  
          communities, food assistance, conservation education and outreach  
          activities, and urgent fish and stream needs related to the  

          The legislation includes more than $1 billion for local drought  
          relief and infrastructure projects to make the state's water  
          infrastructure more resilient to extreme weather events.   
          Specifically, the legislation does the following: 

          1)Accelerates $267 million from Proposition 1 of 2014, Water Bond  
            funding for safe drinking water and water recycling from the  
            Governor's January budget proposal.

          2)Accelerates drought-related expenditures from the Governor's  
            January budget proposal augmented by $31 million in targeted  
            additional expenditures ($132 million total), including efforts  
            to implement the Water Action Plan and provide direct assistance  
            to workers and communities impacted by drought.


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          3)The additional $31 million in new targeted expenditure items  
            which were not included in the Governor's January budget  
            proposal include the following:

             a)   Seventeen million dollars in additional funding to support  
               emergency food aid to 29 counties most impacted by the  

             b)   Four million dollars for emergency drinking water in  
               disadvantaged communities;

             c)   Five million dollars to the DWR to provide emergency  
               drinking water support for small communities, including  
               addressing private wells;

             d)   One million four hundred thousand dollars to the DWR to  
               increase advertising and public relations related to the Save  
               Our Water campaign;

             e)   Two million eight hundred thousand dollars to the DWR and  
               CDFW for additional modeling support and species tracking in  
               the Delta and greater Central Valley to support efficient  
               management of the state's water system; and

             f)   One million dollars to address critical infrastructure  
               deficiencies at remote fire stations that have run out of  


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          4)Accelerates $660 million from the Governor's January budget  
            proposal of Proposition 1E of 2006, bond monies for flood  
            protection in urban and rural areas to make the state's  
            infrastructure more resilient to climate change and flood  

          5)Accelerates $30 million from the Governor's January budget  
            proposal of cap-and-trade auction revenue to DWR ($20 million)  
            and CDFA ($10 million) for programs that provide a reduction of  
            GHG emissions and also deliver state and local water use  
            efficiency and agricultural water use efficiency.  Both  
            proposals were part of last year's agreement on cap-and-trade  

          This bill is an important first step in addressing urgent needs  
          brought on by the extreme drought.  It contains critical funding  
          for emergency water and food services and gets a start on big  
          projects - such as water recycling - that help provide local water  
          supply reliability that can help with future or ongoing drought.  

          Analysis Prepared by:                                               
                           Gabrielle Meindl / BUDGET / 916-319-2099   FN: