BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



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          CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS


          AB  
          1071 (Atkins and Eduardo Garcia)


          As Amended  August 31, 2015


          Majority vote


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          |ASSEMBLY:  |79-0  |(June 1, 2015) |SENATE: |39-1  |(September 3,    |
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          Original Committee Reference:  NAT. RES.


          SUMMARY:  Requires each board, department, and office within the  
          California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) to establish  
          a policy on supplemental environmental projects (SEPs) that  
          benefits environmental justice communities.


          The Senate amendments: 


          1)Add legislative findings and declarations relating to  
            disproportionate environmental and public health impacts on  
            disadvantaged communities and the benefits of SEPs.  


          2)Replace the term "environmental justice community" with  
            "disadvantaged community." 










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          3)Specifies that the bill applies to boards, departments, and  
            offices that have enforcement authority.  


          4)Require that the SEP policy include consideration of the  
            relationship between the location of the violation and the  
            location of the proposed SEP.  


          FISCAL EFFECT:  According to the Senate Appropriations  
          Committee, this bill has minor and absorbable costs to various  
          special funds to oversee SEPs and result in unknown lost  
          revenues, likely in the millions of dollars, to various special  
          funds as a result of penalty reductions as a result of SEPs.


          COMMENTS:  According to the Office of Environmental Health  
          Hazard Assessment (OEHHA), approximately eight million  
          Californians (21%) live in zip codes that are considered "highly  
          impacted" by environmental, public health, and socioeconomic  
          stressors.  Nearly half of all Californians live within six  
          miles of a facility that is a significant greenhouse gas emitter  
          (46%), and they are disproportionately people of color (62%).   
          Throughout California, people of color face a 50% higher risk of  
          cancer from ambient concentrations of air pollutants listed  
          under the Clean Air Act.  These impacts are felt by all  
          Californians.  ARB estimates that air pollution exposure  
          accounts for 19,000 premature deaths, 280,000 cases of asthma,  
          and 1.9 million lost work days every year.


          SEPs are environmentally beneficial projects that a violator  
          agrees to undertake as part of a settlement for an enforcement  
          action, but which the violator is not otherwise legally required  
          to perform.  In 2003, CalEPA released guidelines for the use of  
          SEPs for its boards, departments, and offices.  The guidelines  
          specify that an SEP must improve, protect, or reduce risks to  
          public health and the environment at large.  The enforcing  
          agency must have the opportunity to help shape the scope of the  
          project before it is implemented and the project must not be  
          commenced until the enforcing agency has identified a violation.  
           Finally, the SEP must not be required by a federal, state, or  








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          local law or regulation.  CalEPA's SEP guidelines suggest  
          limiting the SEP to 25% of the total enforcement action.  


          Within CalEPA, the Air Resources Board (ARB), Department of  
          Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), and the State Water Resources  
          Control Board (SWRCB) have adopted SEP policies.  ARB and DTSC's  
          policies are consistent with CalEPA's guidelines and allow SEPs  
          up to 25% of the amount of the enforcement action.  SWRCB,  
          consistent with authority granted by SB 1733 (Aanestad), Chapter  
          404, Statutes of 2006, allow SEPs up to 50% of the amount of the  
          penalty.


          Under this bill, the Department of Resources Recycling and  
          Recovery (CalRecycle), OEHHA, and the Department of Pesticide  
          Regulation (DPR) to adopt SEP policies directed toward  
          disadvantaged communities and specify that SEPs can account for  
          up to 50% of an enforcement action.  


          CalEPA's 2012 Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Report  
          provides information on the use of SEPs in California.  For  
          hazardous waste law violations, three cases totaling over $33.9  
          million, of which $5.5 million was used for SEPs.  ARB assessed  
          just under $16.1 million in penalties, and $525,000 was used for  
          SEPs.  In the report, SWRCB provided aggregated data for  
          "backlogged violations," which showed total penalties of over  
          $25 million and $2.5 million for SEPs.  


          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Elizabeth MacMillan / NAT. RES. / (916) 319-2092  
                                                                         
          FN: 0001952















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