California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 102


Introduced by Assembly Member Rodriguez

January 8, 2015


An act to amend Section 7718 of the Public Utilities Code, relating to hazardous materials.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 102, as introduced, Rodriguez. Railroad safety and emergency planning and response.

Existing law establishes the Railroad Accident Prevention and Immediate Deployment Force in the California Environmental Protection Agency and designates the force as being responsible for providing immediate onsite response capability in the event of a large-scale release of toxic materials resulting from a surface transportation accident. Existing law requires the agency to develop a state railroad accident prevention and immediate deployment plan, in consultation with specified state entities, other potentially affected state, local, or federal agencies, and affected businesses, and designates the force as being responsible for implementing the plan, acting cooperatively and in concert with existing local emergency response units.

This bill would make technical, nonsubstantive changes to these provisions.

Existing law establishes the Office of Emergency Services under the supervision of the Director of Emergency Services and makes the office responsible for the state’s emergency and disaster response services for natural, technological, or manmade disasters and emergencies.

This bill would declare the intent of the Legislature to reauthorize the Railroad Accident Prevention and Immediate Deployment Force, to transfer the force from the California Environmental Protection Agency to the Office of Emergency Services, and to require the Office of Emergency Services to designate the force as responsible for providing onsite response capability in the event of a large-scale release of toxic materials resulting from a railroad accident. The bill would make related findings and declarations.

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P2    1

SECTION 1.  

(a) The Legislature finds and declares the
2following:

3(1) Existing law establishes the Railroad Accident Prevention
4and Immediate Deployment Force in the California Environmental
5Protection Agency. The force is responsible for providing
6immediate onsite response capability in the event of a large-scale
7release of toxic materials resulting from a surface transportation
8accident.

9(2) Existing law requires the agency to develop a state railroad
10accident prevention and immediate deployment plan, in
11consultation with specified state entities, and other potentially
12affected state, local, or federal agencies. The force is responsible
13for implementing the plan and is required to act cooperatively and
14in concert with existing local emergency response units.

15(3) Authority and funding for the Railroad Accident Prevention
16and Immediate Deployment Force program has lapsed, leaving a
17gap in the state’s ability to respond to spills of toxic and hazardous
18materials.

19(4) Existing law establishes the Office of Emergency Services
20under the supervision of the Director of Emergency Services. The
21office is responsible for the state’s emergency and disaster response
22services for natural, technological, or manmade disasters and
23emergencies.

24(b) It is the intent of the Legislature to reauthorize the Railroad
25Accident Prevention and Immediate Deployment Force and transfer
26it from the California Environmental Protection Agency to the
27Office of Emergency Services. It is further the intent of the
28Legislature to require the Office of Emergency Services to
29designate the force as responsible for providing onsite response
P3    1capability in the event of a large-scale release of toxic materials
2resulting from a railroad accident.

3

SEC. 2.  

Section 7718 of the Public Utilities Code is amended
4to read:

5

7718.  

(a) The Railroad Accident Prevention and Immediate
6Deployment Force is hereby created in the California
7Environmental Protection Agency. The force shall be responsible
8for providing immediate onsite response capability in the event of
9large-scale releases of toxic materials resulting from surface
10transportation accidents and for implementing the state hazardous
11materials incident prevention and immediate deployment plan.
12begin delete Thisend deletebegin insert Theend insert force shall act cooperatively and in concert with existing
13local emergency response units. The force shall consist of
14representatives of all of the following:

15(1) Department of Fish andbegin delete Game.end deletebegin insert Wildlife.end insert

16(2) California Environmental Protection Agency.

17(3) State Air Resources Board.

begin delete

18(4) California Integrated Waste Management Board.

end delete
begin insert

19(4) Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery.

end insert

20(5) California regional water quality control boards.

21(6) Department of Toxic Substances Control.

22(7) Department of Pesticide Regulation.

23(8) Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment.

24(9) State Department of Public Health.

25(10) Department of the California Highway Patrol.

26(11) Department of Food and Agriculture.

27(12) Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

28(13) Department of Parks and Recreation.

29(14) Public Utilities Commission.

30(15) Any other potentially affected state, local, or federal agency.

31(16) Office of Emergency Services.

32(b) The California Environmental Protection Agency shall
33develop a state railroad accident prevention and immediate
34deployment plan in cooperation with the State Fire Marshal,
35affected businesses, and all of the entities listed in paragraphs (1)
36tobegin delete (17),end deletebegin insert (16),end insert inclusive, of subdivision (a).

37(c) The plan specified in subdivision (b) shall be a
38comprehensive set of policies and directions that every potentially
39affected state agency and business shall follow if there is a railroad
40accident to minimize the potential damage to the public health and
P4    1safety, property, and the environment that might result from
2accidents involving railroad activities in the state.



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