BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                      



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          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                   SB 792|
          |Office of Senate Floor Analyses   |                         |
          |1020 N Street, Suite 524          |                         |
          |(916) 651-1520         Fax: (916) |                         |
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                                 THIRD READING


          Bill No:  SB 792
          Author:   Steinberg (D)
          Amended:  As introduced
          Vote:     21

           
           SENATE NATURAL RESOURCES AND WATER COMM  :  7-1, 3/22/11
          AYES:  Pavley, Evans, Fuller, Kehoe, Padilla, Simitian, 
            Wolk
          NOES:  Cannella
          NO VOTE RECORDED:  La Malfa

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE  :  Senate Rule 28.8


           SUBJECT  :    Surface mining:  mineral resource management 
          policies

           SOURCE  :     California Construction and Industrial 
          Materials Association


           DIGEST  :    This bill amends the required contents of 
          mineral management policies that are adopted as part of 
          local general plans, so the these plans consider ways to 
          provide access to mineral resources for infrastructure 
          projects.


           ANALYSIS  :    Existing law:

          1.Prohibits a person, with exceptions, from conducting 
            surface mining operations unless a permit is obtained 
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            from, a reclamation plan is submitted to and approved by, 
            and financial assurances for reclamation have been 
            approved by, the lead agency for the operation.

          2.Requires a lead agency, within 12 months of certain 
            occurrences, to establish, in accordance with state 
            policy, mineral resource management policies to be 
            incorporated into the lead agency's general plan.

          3.Requires these policies to, among other things, assist in 
            the management of land use that affects areas of 
            statewide and regional significance.

          This bill amends the required contents of mineral 
          management policies that are adopted as part of local 
          general plans, so the these plans consider ways to provide 
          access to mineral resources for infrastructure projects.

           Background
           
          The Surface Mining and Reclamation Act (SMARA) is the state 
          law that authorizes and regulates mining activities in 
          California.  It applies to mining of precious metals as 
          well as the mining of sand and gravel.  In general terms, 
          the law generally requires an environmental analysis of the 
          proposed activity, adherence to the laws and regulations 
          that govern operations, and the mine reclamation 
          requirements which are enforced by the Department of 
          Conservation and the State Mining and Geology Board and 
          financial assurances adequate to ensure compliance with a 
          mine reclamation plan. SMARA generally designates local 
          governments as the lead agency for purposes of approving 
          mining activities. 

          However, the identification of regionally significant 
          mineral resource deposits is an important component of 
          SMARA that is administered at the state level.  This is 
          accomplished through two processes known as classification 
          and designation.  Classification is the process by which 
          the California Geological Society identifies lands 
          containing significant mineral deposits.  Classification 
          may be initiated by a member of the public and must be 
          approved for further consideration by the state geologist. 


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           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  Yes   
          Local:  No

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  4/11/11)

          California Construction and Industrial Materials 
          Association (source)
          Vulcan Materials Company 
          Holliday Companies
          Basic Resources, Inc. 
          LeHigh Hanson
          A.Teichert & Sons, Inc.


           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT  :    The California Construction and 
          Industrial Materials Association and several of its members 
          have expressed support for this bill in order to help 
          obtain in-state materials that are necessary for public and 
          private infrastructure projects in California and to 
          decrease the costly importation of materials across great 
          distances within California and even from other states and 
          nations. 


          CTW:nl  4/11/11   Senate Floor Analyses 

                         SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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