Recently Enacted Legislation

Laws & Regulations, Legislation

The Legislative Affairs Office provides the Commission with legislative strategies to advance the Commission’s management of public trust lands and resources. The Legislative Affairs Office also provides expert policy advice to the Administration and the Legislature on policy and fiscal implications of public land and resource management-related legislation. Additionally, the Legislative Affairs Office articulates the Commission’s position on legislation proposed by the state Legislature and Congress and represents the Commission at Committee hearings.

Below is a list of legislation enacted in 2019 that directly impacts the Commission.

Chapter 123, Statutes of 2019 (AB 585, Limon): Public lands: oil, gas, and mineral leases.
This bill makes a series of changes related to oil and gas lease liability and decommissioning. These include: 1. Specifying the factors the Commission may consider when deciding whether to approve an oil or gas lease assignment or transfer. 2. Clarifying when a lessee or operator accrues decommissioning obligations. 3. Requiring a notarized affidavit of liability for decommissioning and an agreement to start within six months. 4. Makes failure to comply with decommissioning deadlines a misdemeanor. 5. Requires that lease assignments or transfers are recorded in the applicable county, and, 6. Clarifying that when California  undertakes plug and abandonment and decommissioning operations to protect public health and safety that this is an appropriate use of its police power.

Chapter 169, Statutes of 2019 (SB 307, Roth): Water conveyance: use of facility with unused capacity.
This bill would prohibit a transferor of water from using a conveyance facility that has unused capacity to transfer water from a groundwater basin under certain desert lands unless the State Lands Commission, in consultation with the Department of Fish and Wildlife and Department of Water Resources, finds that the transfer will not adversely affect the natural or cultural resources, including groundwater resources or habitat, of nearby state and federal lands.

Chapter 276, Statutes of 2019 (Boerner Horvarth): Competitions on state property: prize compensation: gender equity.
This bill requires equal prize money for men and women at any sporting event on land under the jurisdiction of the State Lands Commission, the California Coastal Commission, the Department of Parks and Recreation, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, and the Department of Transportation. As background, last year, the Commission approved a lease for the Mavericks Surf Contest that requires multiple heats in the women’s division and equal prize money regardless of gender. AB 467 was introduced the following year to require equal prize money for men and women athletes when competing on state property.

Below is a list of legislation enacted in 2018 that directly impacts the Commission.

Chapter 250, Statutes of 2018 (AB 1759, McCarty): Public trust lands: City of Sacramento.
This bill grants in trust to the City of Sacramento title to parcels of land associated with the Sacramento Downtown Railyards Title Settlement and Land Exchange Agreement. It also repeals two legislative grants of tide and submerged land made to the City of Sacramento in the 1970s.

Chapter 192, Statutes of 2018 (AB 2646, Gonzalez-Fletcher): The San Diego Unified Port District: trust lands.
This bill grants the San Diego Unified Port District land in the city of Chula Vista that the Commission acquired in a 2010 land exchange. The grant would be subject to the terms and conditions in the Port’s existing statutory trust grant and
the common law Public Trust Doctrine.

Chapter 742, Statutes of 2018 (SB 1493, Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water): Public Resources.
This bill repeals an obsolete land grant to the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, clarifies the process by which the Commission submits reports to the Legislature, modernizes the Marine Invasive Species Act to reflect current biofouling management practices, and makes other non-substantive changes to the Commission’s governing statutes.

Below is a list of legislation enacted in 2017 that directly impacts the Commission.

Chapter 535, Statutes of 2017 (SB 50, Allen): Federal public lands: conveyances.
This bill establishes a policy of the state to discourage conveyances of federal public lands in California from the federal government. The bill specifies that these conveyances are void ab initio unless the State Lands Commission was provided with the right of first refusal or the right to arrange for the transfer of the federal public land to another entity.

Chapter 645, Statutes of 2017 (SB 44, Jackson): State lands: coastal hazard and legacy oil and gas well removal and remediation program.
This bill will require the State Lands Commission to, within 2 years, administer a coastal hazard and legacy oil and gas well removal and remediation program. The bill authorizes the Commission to seek and accept on behalf of the state any gift, bequest, devise, or donation whenever the gift and the terms and conditions thereof will aid in actions undertaken to administer that program. 

Chapter 521, Statutes of 2017 (SB 809, Committee on Natural Resources and Water): Natural resources.
This bill authorizes the Commission to make a conveyance of a tract of land that does not exceed 10 acres, belonging to the state and covered by navigable waters, for the site of a lighthouse, beacon, or other navigation aid.