BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                     SB 491

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          Date of Hearing:  July 13, 2015 


                                 Jim Frazier, Chair

          491 (Committee on Transportation and Housing) - As Amended June  
          29, 2015

          SENATE VOTE:  36-0

          SUBJECT:  Transportation: omnibus bill.

          SUMMARY:  Makes minor, non-controversial changes to sections of  
          law relating to transportation.  Specifically, this bill:  

          1)Removes the requirement for the California Department of  
            Transportation (Caltrans) to report the delivery date of the  
            construction phase of a project as erroneously required by 

          SB 486 (DeSaulnier), Chapter 917, Statutes of 2014.  (Submitted  
            by the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee.)
          2)Updates the title for the Federal Statewide Transportation  
            Improvement Program, removes incorrect references to the  
            federal law relating to that program, and provides an  
            additional two months for Caltrans to incorporate federal  
            changes into the State Transportation Improvement Plan  
            (SHOPP).  (Submitted by Caltrans.)


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          3)Authorizes the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority  
            (VTA) to hold public meetings for the purpose of adopting  
            project selection criteria for expenditure of Bay Area Air  
            Quality Management District (BAAQMD) vehicle registration  
            surcharge funds only if project selection criteria have  
            changes (as opposed to annually whether or not selection  
            criteria have changed as is required in existing law).   
            (Submitted by VTA.)

          4)Updates the codes by replacing the outdated reference to  
            Business, Transportation and Housing Agency with reference to  
            the newly formed California Transportation Agency. (Submitted  
            by the Senate Transportation and Housing Committee.)

          5)Deletes specified state highway route segment descriptions  
            from the codes for highway segments that have been  
            relinquished by the California Transportation Commission (CTC)  
            to local jurisdictions.  (Submitted by the Office of Assembly  
            Member Ridley-Thomas.)

          6)Changes the word "protected" to "separated" in the code to  
            better describe cycling infrastructure consisting of marked  
            lanes, tracks, shoulders, and paths designated exclusively for  
            bicycle use.  (Submitted by Caltrans.)

          7)Replaces references in the Vehicle Code pertaining to  
            suspensions and revocations of the driving privileges to the  
            repealed Welfare and Institutions Code with the appropriate  
            renumbered sections in the Family Code.  [Submitted by the  
            Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).]

          8)Corrects a drafting error in AB 1047 (Linder), Chapter 649,  
            Statutes of 2013, that omitted drivers of buses with a gross  
            vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,000 pounds or less from the  


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            requirement to be enrolled in the Employer Pull Notice (EPN)  
            Program by clarifying that any driver's license endorsement  
            issued to operate any commercial motor vehicle requires  
            enrollment in the EPN Program.  [Submitted by the California  
            Highway Patrol (CHP).]

          9)Makes conforming changes to code sections to correct  
            references to renumbered code sections with regard to DMV's  
            authority to hold administrative hearings for drivers whose  
            privileges are suspended or revoked for driving under the  
            influence (DUI).  (Submitted by DMV.)

          10)Corrects an oversight in recent legislation that extended the  
            operative date of exemptions to provide proof of financial  
            responsibility as part of the vehicle registration renewal  
            process without concomitantly amending the sunset date.   
            (Submitted by DMV.)

          11)Brings various sections of the California's Motor Carrier  
            Safety Assistance Program codes into compliance with federal  
            mandates.  (Submitted by CHP.)

          12)Explicitly prohibits wearing earbuds or headsets covering,  
            resting on, or inserted in both ears when operating a motor  
            vehicle or bicycle.  (Submitted by the Senate Transportation  
            and Housing Committee.)

          13)Restores the CTC's authority to relinquish segments of State  
            Routes (SR) 92, 185, and 238 to the City of Hayward, if  
            Caltrans and the City reach an agreement.  These provisions  
            are identical to the provisions of prior legislation granting  
            CTC relinquishment authority for these route segments [AB 1386  
            (Hayashi), Chapter 291, Statutes of 2009], which was  
            inadvertently removed by the 2012 Transportation Omnibus Bill,  


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            [AB 2679 (Committee on Transportation), Chapter 769, Statutes  
            of 2012.]  (Submitted by Caltrans.)

          14)Makes technical corrections to statutory provisions  
            pertaining to prior relinquishments to ensure the statutes  
            accurately reflect the statutory provisions authorizing those  
            relinquishments.  (Submitted by Caltrans.)

          15)Delays the Active Transportation Program project selection  
            dates by one month from December 31, 2015 to January 31, 2016,  
            to allow the Southern California Association of Governments  
            (SCAG) to first adopt the final regional plan.  (Submitted by  

          16)Makes the Vehicle Code consistent with the principally at  
            fault accident determinations under the Insurance Regulations  
            (Code of Civil Procedures and Civil Code) by increasing the  
            threshold for reporting an accident with property damage to  
            the DMV from $750 to $1,000. [Office of Senator Hill per SB  
            438 (Hill), of 2015.]

          EXISTING LAW:   

          1)Requires the Caltrans to prepare an asset management plan.

          2)Requires Caltrans to update the SHOPP to reflect federal  
            program changes.

          3)Requires VTA to hold public meetings annually with regard to  
            project selection criteria used for expenditure of vehicle  
            registration surcharge funds collected by the BAAQMD.


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          4)Replaced the Business, Transportation, and Housing Agency with  
            the California State Transportation Agency and the California  
            Business, Consumer Services, and Housing Agency.

          5)Authorizes the CTC, following the approval by the Legislature,  
            to relinquish state highways to local jurisdictions.

          6)Defines a cycle track or separated bikeway as a right-of-way  
            designed exclusively for bicycle travel adjacent to a roadway  
            and which are protected from vehicular traffic.

          7)Repealed certain sections of the Welfare and Institutions Code  
            and renumbered them in the Family Code. 

          8)Established the EPN Program to provide employers and  
            regulatory agencies a means to ensure driver safety through  
            ongoing review of driver records.

          9)Specifies that DMV has the authority to conduct administrative  
            hearings for drivers whose driving privileges are suspended or  
            revoked for DUI.

          10)Sets forth requirements for the operation of commercial motor  

          11)Prohibits wearing of headsets or earplugs while operating a  
            motor vehicle or a bicycle.

          FISCAL EFFECT:  Unknown


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          COMMENTS:  The Assembly Transportation Committee and the Senate  
          Transportation and Housing Committee (Committees) traditionally  
          author an annual transportation omnibus bill, combining various  
          statutory modifications that are technical in nature,  
          non-controversial, and have no opposition into a single bill.   
          Suggestions for omnibus provisions are solicited from a broad  
          range of stakeholders.  The Committees insist that the  
          transportation omnibus bill be a consensus measure, therefore,  
          if there is opposition to an item, it must be removed.  There is  
          no known opposition to any item in this bill.



          None on file


          None on file

          Analysis Prepared by:Victoria Alvarez / TRANS. / (916)  


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