BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    




           ----------------------------------------------------------------- 
          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                        SB 491|
          |Office of Senate Floor Analyses   |                              |
          |(916) 651-1520    Fax: (916)      |                              |
          |327-4478                          |                              |
           ----------------------------------------------------------------- 


                                       CONSENT


          Bill No:  SB 491
          Author:   Committee on Transportation and Housing  
          Amended:  4/22/15  
          Vote:     21  

           SENATE TRANS. & HOUSING COMMITTEE:  10-0, 4/28/15
           AYES:  Beall, Cannella, Bates, Gaines, Galgiani, Leyva,  
            McGuire, Mendoza, Roth, Wieckowski
           NO VOTE RECORDED:  Allen

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE:  Senate Rule 28.8

           SUBJECT:   Transportation:  omnibus bill


          SOURCE:    Author


          DIGEST:  This bill makes non-controversial changes to sections  
          of law relating to transportation.


          ANALYSIS:  This bill includes the following provisions, and the  
          proponent of each provision is noted in brackets:

            1)   California Department of Transportation (Caltrans)  
              project delivery reports (Section 1).  SB 486 (DeSaulnier,  
              Chapter 917, Statutes of 2014) was a transparency bill that  
              sought to provide greater visibility of Caltrans operations  
              by requiring more reporting of capital and support budgets  
              for the State Highway Operation and Protection Program  
              (SHOPP).  Caltrans' amendments were taken incorrectly and  
              the bill mistakenly required Caltrans to report the  
              projected delivery date of the construction phase of a  
              project.  It is not feasible for Caltrans to report on the  








                                                                     SB 491  
                                                                    Page  2



              projected delivery date of the construction phase of a SHOPP  
              project because this date is controlled by a contractor, not  
              Caltrans.  This requirement does not provide a reflection or  
              improvement of Caltrans' operations.  This bill removes the  
              requirement for Caltrans to report the delivery date of the  
              construction phase of a project.  [Submitted by the Senate  
              Transportation and Housing Committee]

            2)   State Transportation Improvement Plan (Sections 2, 5, and  
              6).  State law contains an outdated title for the Federal  
              Statewide Transportation Improvement Program and an  
              incorrect reference to federal law relating to that program.  
               It also provides insufficient time for the state to  
              incorporate into the State Transportation Improvement Plan  
              and SHOPP all projects approved by the California  
              Transportation Commission.  This bill ensures that state  
              statute is in conformity with federal statute and allows  
              adequate time to incorporate these changes into state plans.  
               [Submitted by Caltrans]

            3)   Public meetings to adopt project-selection criteria  
              (Section 3).  The Bay Area Air Quality Management District  
              (BAAQMD) administers the $4 vehicle registration surcharge  
              for projects that reduce vehicle emissions.  California  
              Health and Safety Code (HSC) Section 44241(d) requires the  
              BAAQMD to return 40% of the revenues to the county in which  
              the revenues are collected for allocation by a "program  
              manager."  Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA)  
              serves as the program manager for these funds in Santa Clara  
              County.  HSC Section 44231(f) requires the program manager  
              to hold one or more public meetings at least once a year for  
              the purpose of:  (a) adopting criteria for expenditure of  
              the funds, and (b) reviewing the projects to be funded.  VTA  
              feels it is not necessary to hold public hearings and adopt  
              the same criteria again, year after year, if the criteria  
              for project selection has not changed.  This bill provides  
              that hearings on project selection criteria are only  
              required if the criteria have changed.  [Submitted by VTA]

            4)   California State Transportation Agency reference (Section  
              4).  Existing law, effective July 1, 2013, replaces the  
              Business, Transportation, and Housing Agency with the  








                                                                     SB 491  
                                                                    Page  3



              California State Transportation Agency and the California  
              Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency.  This bill  
              replaces an outdated reference to the Secretary of the  
              Business, Transportation, and Housing Agency with a  
              reference to the Secretary of Transportation.   [Submitted  
              by the Assembly Transportation and Housing Committee]

            5)   Highway relinquishments (Sections 7 and 8).  This bill  
              deletes specific state highway route segment descriptions  
              from the code given that the highway segments have been  
              relinquished by the California Transportation Commission to  
              local jurisdictions.  [Submitted by the Office of  
              Assemblymember Ridley-Thomas]

            6)   Separated bikeways (Section 9).  Caltrans worked  
              extensively with the author and source of AB 1193 (Ting,  
              Chapter 495, Statutes of 2014) to shape the bill into  
              something that technically worked well for both Caltrans and  
              local governments.  One of the technical amendments that  
              Caltrans proposed was to change the word "protected" in the  
              definition of cycle tracks to "separated" in Streets and  
              Highways Code Section 890.4(d).  While this change was  
              accepted by the author's office, the source (California  
              Bicycle Coalition), the League of California Cities, the  
              California State Association of Counties, and the Consumer  
              Attorneys of California, it did not make it fully into the  
              bill.  This bill changes the word "protected" to "separated"  
              in the Streets and Highways Code.  [Submitted by Caltrans]

            7)   Driver license suspensions (Section 10).  Vehicle Code  
              Section1808(c) requires the Department of Motor Vehicles  
              (DMV) to make available or disclose suspensions and  
              revocations of the driving privilege while the suspension or  
              revocation is in effect, and for three years following  
              termination of the action or reinstatement of the privilege.  
               Driver license suspension actions taken pursuant to Welfare  
              and Institutions (WI) Code Sections13202.6 and 13202.7, 256,  
              or 11350.6 shall be disclosed only during the actual time  
              period in which the suspension is in effect.  WI Code  
              Section 11350.6 requires the DMV to suspend the driver  
              license of an individual who has failed to pay their  
              required child support.  In 1999, WI Section 11350.6 was  








                                                                     SB 491  
                                                                    Page  4



              repealed and renumbered to Family Code Section 17520.  This  
              bill adds the appropriate reference to the Family Code.   
              References to the repealed WI sections should remain in  
              Vehicle Code Section 1808, as some drivers suspended in the  
              past will continue to show the repealed WI section as a  
              conviction on their driver license record.  Additionally, it  
              is possible for a driver to continue to be suspended under  
              WI Code Section 11350.6 because they did not reinstate their  
              license for any number of reasons, including incarceration.   
              It is necessary for the DMV to track and disclose both  
              sections.  [Submitted by DMV]

            8)   DMV Employer Pull Notice program (Section 11).  The  
              Employer Pull Notice (EPN) program was established to  
              provide employers and regulatory agencies with a means to  
              ensure driver safety through the ongoing review of driver  
              records.  As a result of a drafting error contained in AB  
              1047 (Linder, Chapter 649, Statutes of 2013), drivers of  
              buses with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,000 pounds or  
              less were excluded from Vehicle Code Section 1808.1(k), and  
              therefore no longer required to be enrolled in the EPN  
              program.  AB 1047 was intended to bring California's  
              commercial driver license program into compliance with  
              Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulations to  
              ensure that California can continue to operate its  
              Commercial Driver License program, receive federal highway  
              funds, and be eligible for federal safety grants.  This bill  
              clarifies that any driver license endorsement issued  
              pursuant to Vehicle Code Section 15278 is required to be  
              enrolled in the DMV EPN program.  [Submitted by the  
              California Highway Patrol]

            9)   Administrative hearings for suspension or revocation  
              (Section 12).  Vehicle Code Section 13557 specifies the  
              DMV's authority and requirements for administrative hearings  
              for drivers whose privileges are suspended or revoked for  
              driving under the influence and other offenses. Vehicle Code  
              Section 13558 authorizes any person who has received a  
              suspension or revocation notice for specified offenses,  
              including driving under the influence, to request an  
              administrative hearing within 10 days of receipt of the  
              notice of suspension or revocation.  The 2011 maintenance of  








                                                                     SB 491  
                                                                    Page  5



              the codes bill (AB 1023, Wagner, Chapter 296, Statutes of  
              2011) made technical changes to Vehicle Code Section 13557,  
              which included the renumbering of Vehicle Code Section  
              13357(b)(2) to Vehicle Code Section 13557(b)(3).  However,  
              the bill did not make necessary conforming changes to  
              Vehicle Code Section 13558 to provide the new paragraph  
              reference.  This bill corrects the code section reference  
              error in Vehicle Code Section 13558, which incorrectly  
              refers to Vehicle Code Section 13357(b)(2), when it should  
              refer to Vehicle Code Section 13557(b)(3).  [Submitted by  
              DMV]

            10)  Low-Cost Auto Insurance (LCAI) program extension  
              (Sections 13 and 14). Vehicle Code Sections 16020.1 and  
              16020.2, beginning January 1, 2016, create an exemption for  
              drivers in the County of Los Angeles and the City and County  
              of San Francisco from providing proof of financial  
              responsibility as part of the vehicle registration renewal  
              process or to law enforcement.  These sections were  
              developed as part of a conference committee compromise  
              during the establishment of the Department of Insurance's  
              LCAI program (SB 171, Escutia, Chapter 794, Statutes of 1999  
              and SB 527, Speier, Chapter 807, Statutes of 1999).  
           
              The operative date of Vehicle Code Sections 16020.1 and  
              16020.2 is the same as the sunset date of the LCAI program.   
              Generally, the operative date of these sections is extended  
              along with the sunset date of the LCAI program.  However,  
              due to an oversight, the operative date of the exemptions  
              was not extended along with the sunset date during the last  
              legislative session (SB 1273, Lara, Chapter 487, Statutes of  
              2014).  Failure to extend this date means that unlike the  
              rest of Californians, drivers in the County of Los Angeles  
              and the City and County of San Francisco will not have to  
              show proof of insurance to register their vehicles or to law  
              enforcement entities, beginning next year. This bill  
              rectifies the oversight of SB 1273 and prevents any  
              operational issues for DMV by extending the operative dates  
              of Vehicle Code Sections 16020.1 and 16020.2 from January 1,  
              2016 to January 1, 2020.  [Submitted by DMV]
           
            11)  Federal conformity (Sections 15-22, 24, and 25).  The  








                                                                     SB 491  
                                                                    Page  6



              state of California was audited by members of the United  
              States Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier  
              Safety Administration (FMCSA) unit.  The purpose of this  
              audit was to review California's Motor Carrier Safety  
              Assistance Program for compliance with federal mandates.   
              During their audit, the FMCSA identified specific sections  
              of the Vehicle Code as lacking consistency or compatibility  
              with existing federal regulations and recommended these  
              sections be considered for revision to gain uniformity with  
              federal statute.  This bill brings California's statutes in  
              line with those required federally in Title 49 of the United  
              States Code of Federal Regulations.  [Submitted by the  
              California Highway Patrol]

            12)   Earbud use (Section 23).  Statute prohibits wearing of  
              headsets or earplugs while operating a motor vehicle or  
              bicycle, with specified exceptions such as emergency  
              responders or hearing aid wearers.  Statute does not  
              explicitly prohibit wearing of earbuds, such as those used  
              with a smartphone or iPod.  This bill explicitly prohibits  
              earbud use while operating a motor vehicle or bicycle.   
              [Submitted by the Senate Transportation and Housing  
              Committee]


          Comments

          Purpose of this bill.  The purpose of omnibus bills is to  
          include technical and non-controversial changes to various  
          committee-related statutes into one bill.  This allows the  
          Legislature to make multiple, minor changes to statutes in one  
          bill in a cost-effective manner.  The Senate Committee on  
          Transportation and Housing insists that its transportation  
          omnibus bill be a consensus measure.  If there is no consensus  
          on a particular item, it cannot be included.  There is no known  
          opposition to any item in this bill.


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

          SUPPORT:  (Verified  5/11/15)








                                                                     SB 491  
                                                                    Page  7




          None received
          
          OPPOSITION:  (Verified  5/11/15)

          None received


          Prepared by:Alison Dinmore / T. & H. / (916) 651-4121
          5/15/15 13:29:33


                                   ****  END  ****