The California Legislature Is Back: What To Expect in 2022

Another coronavirus variant spreading like wildfire, and another huge state budget surplus: In some ways, 2022 is off to a similar start as 2021. 

That could carry over to the state Legislature’s new session that started Monday. In addition to the pandemic and surplus, California is dealing with some of the same big issues it has long grappled with — including housing and climate change. 

Flush Budget, Unfinished Business Await California Lawmakers

California lawmakers are flush with money and unfinished business from last year as they return to the state Capitol on Monday, but they head into an election year rife with uncertainty due to the redrawing of legislative districts after the 2020 census.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said he anticipates another “historic” budget surplus months after he approved a record spending plan that topped a quarter-trillion dollars including a $75 billion surplus. Legislative analysts predict the state will have another $31 billion surplus for the fiscal year starting July 1.

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‘Bottlebank’ Mobile Recycling Lands in San Francisco

The days of having to take bags of cans and bottles to a recycling center to redeem the California Redemption Value have been over in San Francisco for years, as most recycling centers in The City have closed ... Both state Sen. Scott Wiener and Assemblymember Phil Ting, who represent San Francisco, worked on two separate bills to create and ensure cities had the resources to launch a pilot.

Experts: Newsom Fired Warning Shot at Supreme Court with Anti-Gun Pledge

At least two prominent Democratic lawmakers have publicly committed to introducing legislation next month, while others have backed Newsom’s pitch on social media ... Phil Ting, chair of the Assembly Budget Committee, is also racing to introduce a proposal when the Legislature reconvenes. “Almost every industry in the U.S. is held liable for what their products do, but the gun industry is not held to the same standard.

Ting Issues Statement Regarding the Governor’s Proposed Public Safety Investments

The following statement can be attributed to Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee:

Californians are scared and afraid to go out. That’s no way to live. We must do more to protect businesses and make our communities safer. California must collaborate and assist federal and local law enforcement agencies to address organized retail crime.

I applaud the Governor’s proposals to address the threat and reality of gun violence. I have successfully championed data and information sharing between various state agencies and the UC Davis Firearm Violence Research Center, whose cutting edge work is not only critical to understanding and curbing gun violence, but also helpful in guiding us on policy. I look forward to teaming up with the Administration and our law enforcement partners on crafting an effective strategy to stop these sophisticated shoplifting rings.

California To Implement Nation’s 1st Recycled Content Standards For Plastic Beverage Bottles

California is making strides in reducing plastic pollution with the nation’s first legislation on recycled content standards in plastic bottles. Effective January 1, all plastic California Refund Value drink containers in the state must be made with at least 15 percent recycled materials. Ultimately, California’s goal is to require all plastic bottles to be made of 50 percent recycled materials by 2030, which would surpass the European Union’s 30 percent mandate as the highest percentage requirement in the world.

Nation’s First Recycled Content Standards For Plastic CRV Bottles Among Ting’s Bills Taking Effect January 1st

Sacramento – Sodas, bottled water and other drinks will come in more environmentally friendly packaging, starting next month. That’s when AB 793 by Assemblymembers Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) and Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks) kicks in, the country’s first recycled content standards for plastic CRV drink bottles. It aims to reduce plastic pollution by creating a market for post-consumer plastics. Reusing what’s already been made also supports the state’s transition to a circular economy.

What About Rebate Checks? Democrats Want To Spend California’s Surplus on Infrastructure

State lawmakers want to use a projected $31 billion surplus to fuel an infrastructure boom, a tactic that could reduce the amount Californians might see in any rebate checks this year – if they happen at all. The state expects to have so much money it risks exceeding a state spending threshold called the Gann Limit. If it does, it must send more money to schools and some money back to taxpayers through rebates.