BILL NUMBER: AB 300 CHAPTERED BILL TEXT CHAPTER 622 FILED WITH SECRETARY OF STATE OCTOBER 10, 1999 APPROVED BY GOVERNOR OCTOBER 5, 1999 PASSED THE ASSEMBLY SEPTEMBER 9, 1999 PASSED THE SENATE SEPTEMBER 7, 1999 AMENDED IN SENATE SEPTEMBER 3, 1999 AMENDED IN SENATE AUGUST 26, 1999 AMENDED IN SENATE JUNE 29, 1999 AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY MAY 28, 1999 AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY APRIL 5, 1999 INTRODUCED BY Assembly Member Corbett (Principal coauthor: Assembly Member Alquist) (Coauthors: Assembly Members Honda, Keeley, Knox, and Scott) (Coauthors: Senators Alarcon, Baca, Sher, and Solis) FEBRUARY 8, 1999 An act to add Section 17317 to the Education Code, relating to school facilities. LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST AB 300, Corbett. Seismic safety: schools. Existing law, commonly known as the Field Act, requires that school buildings, as defined, for use in kindergarten, and grades 1 to 14, inclusive, meet certain structural safety requirements. Under the Field Act, plans for the construction, reconstruction, or alteration of any school building must be approved by the Department of General Services. This bill would require the Department of General Services to conduct an inventory of public school buildings that are concrete tilt-up school buildings and school buildings with nonwood frame walls that do not meet the minimum requirements of the 1976 Uniform Building Code and to submit a report to the Legislature and the Governor by December 31, 2001, summarizing its findings and making recommendations. The bill would require the Department of General Services to pursue nonstate funding of up to $500,000 for the purposes of conducting a seismic safety survey to identify the most vulnerable school buildings in the state. If the Department of General Services is not able to secure sufficient nonstate funding, the bill would require the department to seek funding from the Legislature through future Budget Acts or other legislation. THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: SECTION 1. The Legislature finds and declares the following: (a) California's "lucky streak" of not having an earthquake during school hours is still enjoyed today, but that good fortune cannot be relied on forever. It is likely that a damaging earthquake will strike the state during school hours in the future, and if it does, pupils are likely to be harmed due to partial or full structural collapse, as well as due to nonstructural failures of some older buildings that have been approved pursuant to the Field Act. (b) Fifty percent of the state's 60,000 school buildings housing pupils in kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive, that have been approved pursuant to the Field Act, were built prior to 1976 when significant seismic requirements were added to the regulations for the Field Act. As a result, a major earthquake may cause significant loss of school functions, property damage, and injuries to pupils and teachers. A small but significant number of schools approved pursuant to the Field Act are prone to collapse because they were built in accordance with older regulations that are now considered obsolete. (c) Before any meaningful solution may be developed, the scope of the problem needs to be quantified. This measure would do just that, which in turn will enable policymakers to make informed, cost-effective decisions to address the problem. (d) Studies have been completed for hospitals, bridges, state and local governments, and community colleges. It is reasonable to do the same using the same methodology for schools that house pupils enrolled in kindergarten and grades 1 to 12, inclusive. SEC. 2. Section 17317 is added to the Education Code, to read: 17317. The Department of General Services shall, in consultation with the Seismic Safety Commission, conduct an inventory of public school buildings that are concrete tilt-up school buildings and school buildings with nonwood frame walls that do not meet the minimum requirements of the 1976 Uniform Building Code. Priority shall be given to the school buildings identified in the act that added this section that are in the highest seismic risk zones in accordance with the seismic hazard maps of the Division of Mines and Geology of the Department of Conservation. (b) The Department of General Services shall submit a report by December 31, 2001, to the Legislature and the Governor that summarizes the findings of the seismic safety inventory and makes recommendations about future actions that should be taken to address the problems found by the seismic safety inventory. The report shall not identify individual schoolsites on which inventoried school buildings are located. SEC. 3. It is the intent of the Legislature that the Department of General Services shall pursue nonstate funding of up to five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000) for the purposes of conducting a seismic safety inventory pursuant to Section 17317 of the Education Code to identify the most vulnerable school buildings in the state. If the Department of General Services is not able to secure sufficient nonstate funding, it shall seek funding from the Legislature through future Budget Acts or other legislation.