BILL NUMBER: AB 610 AMENDED
AMENDED IN SENATE JANUARY 19, 2012
AMENDED IN SENATE AUGUST 22, 2011
AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY MAY 27, 2011
AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY APRIL 6, 2011
INTRODUCED BY Assembly Member Solorio
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Blumenfield, Gatto, Jeffries, and
FEBRUARY 16, 2011
An act to add and repeal Section 5156.5 of the Vehicle Code,
relating to vehicles, and declaring the urgency thereof, to take
LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST
AB 610, as amended, Solorio. Vehicles: specialized license plates:
Veterinary Medical Board: pilot program.
(1) Under existing law, the Department of Motor Vehicles issues
environmental and other specialized license plates. The issuance of
some of those license plates is subject to additional fees. Existing
law prohibits the department from establishing a specialized license
plate program for a state agency until the department has received
not less than 7,500 applications for the plates.
This bill would
, until January 1, 2015,
authorize the Veterinary Medical Board to sponsor a specialized
license plate pilot program if certain conditions are met. The bill
would only require that an initial 2,500
3,500 paid applications be collected and held by the board and
that a sufficient amount of additional funds be received from
donations to cover the department's startup costs for the manufacture
of the specialized license plate. To maintain the program, the
bill would require that an additional 4,000 license plates be sold
within a year after initial production of those specialized license
plates. The bill would require the board to actively request
and receive donations from public and private entities that would be
deposited into the Specialized License Plate Fund and, upon
determination by the department that there are sufficient funds for
the program, moneys would be available, upon appropriation by the
Legislature, to the department for the necessary administrative costs
of establishing the specialized license plate program and, as to any
remaining moneys, for allocation to the board for programs that
support city and county animal shelters spay
and neutering programs .
The bill would require the department to provide to the board
a cost estimate an itemized report of
its actual costs to initiate the specialized plate program.
(2) This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately
as an urgency statute.
Vote: 2/3. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: no.
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
SECTION 1. The Legislature finds and declares all of the
Based on statistics from the State Department of Public
Health for 2010, 467,096 dogs and 400,433 cats entered shelters in
the state. Of the number of dogs entering shelters, 19 percent were
reclaimed by owners, 32 percent were adopted, and 38 percent were
euthanized. Of the number of cats entering shelters, only 2 percent
were reclaimed by owners and only 20 percent were adopted, and 69
percent were euthanized. The data is incomplete because it does not
include two nonreporting counties and some counties only partially
reported, and the statistics do not include private shelters. Thus,
in 2010, more than 867,529 dogs and cats entered shelters and
more than one-half were euthanized .
(b) In the United States today, it costs taxpayers an estimated
two billion dollars ($2,000,000,000) each year, to round up, house,
kill, and dispose of homeless animals. An estimated 5,000,000 cats
and dogs are killed in shelters each year, which means that a dog or
cat is killed every six and one-half seconds in the United States.
Millions more are abandoned, only to suffer from illness or injury
(c) In six years one unspayed female dog and her offspring can
reproduce 67,000 dogs. On average it costs approximately one hundred
dollars ($100) to capture, house, feed, and eventually kill a
homeless animal-a cost that ultimately comes out of the taxpayers'
pockets. Low-cost spaying and neutering services are far below that
amount. Thus, the cost of having a pregnant female dog can be much
higher than the cost of spaying.
(d) Each day, seven dogs and cats are born for each person born in
the United States. Of those, only one in five puppies and kittens
stay in their original homes for their natural lifetime. The
remaining four are abandoned to the streets or end up at a shelter.
As long as these birth rates exist, there will never be enough homes
for all of the animals.
SEC. 2. Section 5156.5 is added to the Vehicle Code, to read:
5156.5. (a) (1) The Veterinary Medical Board may apply to the
department to sponsor a specialized license plate program, and the
department shall issue specialized license plates for that program,
if the board complies with all of the requirements of this section.
The specialized license plate shall be of a size, color, and
configuration that meets the design criteria as set forth in Section
(2) The department shall not issue specialized license plates to
the board for a vehicle that is exempt from the payment of
registration fees pursuant to Section 9101 or 9103.
(b) The board may sponsor a specialized license plate program and
the department may establish the program in the absence of 7,500 paid
applications, as would be required under subdivision (a) of Section
5156 or Section 5157, if all of the following conditions are met:
(1) The department shall not establish a
specialized license plate program for the board until
when the department has received not less than
2,500 3,500 paid applications for the
board's specialized license plates and a sufficient amount of
additional funds from donations to cover the department's startup
costs for the manufacture of the specialized license plate. The board
shall collect and hold applications for the license
plates. Once the board has received at least 2,500
3,500 paid applications, it shall submit the
applications, along with the necessary fees, to the department.
The department shall not issue a specialized license plate
until the board has received and submitted to the department not less
than 2,500 paid applications for the particular specialized license
plate within the time period prescribed in this section. Advance
payment to the department by the board representing the department's
estimated or actual administrative costs associated with the issuance
of a particular specialized license plate shall not constitute
compliance with this requirement. The board shall have 12 months,
following the date of approval of the board's initial application to
sponsor a specialized license plate program, to receive the required
number of applications. If, after 12 months, 2,500 paid applications
have not been received, the board shall immediately do either of the
(A) Refund to all applicants all fees or deposits that have been
(B) Contact the department to indicate the board's intent to
undertake collection of additional applications and fees or deposits
for an additional period, not to exceed 12 months, in order to obtain
the minimum 2,500 paid applications. If the board elects to exercise
the option under this subparagraph, it shall contact each applicant
who has submitted an application with the appropriate fees or
deposits to determine if the applicant wishes a refund of fees or
deposits or requests the continuance of the holding of the
application and fees or deposits until that time that the board has
received 2,500 paid applications. The board shall refund the fees or
deposits to an applicant so requesting. The board shall not collect
and hold applications for a period exceeding 24 months following the
date of approval of the board's initial application to sponsor a
specialized license plate program.
(2) No later than June 30, 2012, the minimum criteria of 3,500
plates and sufficient funds for the program startup costs shall be
achieved. At that time, the board shall submit the applications along
with the necessary fees to the department and the department shall
undertake production of the specialized license plate. Once the
license plate has been produced, is available to the public for
purchase, and its availability is published on the department's Web
site, the board shall have one year from that date to augment the
initial 3,500 license plates with an additional 4,000 license plates
to meet the minimum criteria for maintaining a new specialized
license plate pilot program of 7,500 license plates sold.
(3) If the pilot program fails to achieve the 7,500 license plate
minimum criteria of license plates sold within the 12-month period
following the date of availability of the first produced license
plate, the department shall notify the board of that fact and shall
inform the board that the department will no longer issue or replace
those specialized license plates.
(4) The board actively requests and receives donations
for the specialized license plate program, which may consist of
donations from public and private entities for deposit into the
Specialized License Plate Fund. Earnings generated from donations
shall be retained for the specialized license plate program
authorized by this section.
(5) Upon determination by the department that there are
sufficient funds for the program, moneys shall be available, upon
appropriation by the Legislature, to the department for the necessary
administrative costs of establishing the specialized license plate
(c) (1) If the number of outstanding and valid specialized license
plates in the second year of the pilot program, including new
applications and renewals , are not more than
5,000, or more than 7,500 in the third year of the pilot
program 7,500 , the department shall notify the
board of that fact and shall inform the board that the department
will no longer issue or replace those specialized license plates.
(2) Those particular specialized license plates that were issued
prior to the discontinuation provided by paragraph (1) may continue
to be used and attached to the vehicle for which they were issued and
may be renewed, retained, or transferred pursuant to this code.
(d) In addition to the regular fees for an original registration
or renewal of registration, the following additional fees shall be
paid for the issuance, renewal, or transfer of the specialized
(1) Fifty dollars ($50) for the original issuance of the plates.
(2) Forty dollars ($40) for a renewal of registration with the
(3) Fifteen dollars ($15) for transfer of the plates to another
(4) Thirty-five dollars ($35) for each substitute replacement
(e) After deducting its administrative costs under this section,
which moneys shall be available for expenditure by the department,
upon appropriation by the Legislature, the department shall deposit
the additional revenue derived from the issuance, renewal, transfer,
and substitution of the specialized license plates in the Specialized
License Plate Fund. Upon appropriation by the Legislature, the
moneys in that fund shall be allocated to the board and, except as
authorized under Section 5159, the board shall expend all funds
received under this section exclusively for projects and programs
that support city and county animal shelters, including, but
not limited to, spaying and neutering programs
and adoption programs .
(f) The department shall provide to the board an estimate
of its itemized report of its actual costs to
initiate the specialized license plate program authorized under this
(g) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1,
2015, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted
statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2015, deletes or extends
SEC. 3. This act is an urgency statute necessary for the immediate
preservation of the public peace, health, or safety within the
meaning of Article IV of the Constitution and shall go into immediate
effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:
In order to ensure that the pilot program for a specialized
license plate becomes operative as soon as possible to allow the
Veterinary Medical Board to support the critically important efforts
of city and county animal shelters to address serious animal care and
control problems facing the state, it is necessary that this act go
into effect immediately.