Recently Enacted 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 the legislation enacted in 2020 that directly impacts the Commission.

Chapter 311, Statutes of 2020 (SB 1472, Committee on Natural Resources and Water): Public resources: school lands.

This bill would repeal the provisions of existing law relating to indemnity lands and lieu lands, except that the bill would preserve the general authority of the commission to select indemnity lands for any losses sustained by the state to its school land grants. It would prohibit the repeal of certain provisions of law related to public lands from affecting any existing vested rights under the repealed provisions or under certain transactions entered into under the repealed provisions, or the rights of any purchaser of school lands sold before the effective date of that repeal. It would explicitly authorize the commission to pay from the fund typical costs and expenses attributable to a sale of school lands when it is in the best interest of the state to do so. By expanding the purposes of a continuously appropriated fund, the bill would make an appropriation.
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 (AB 467, 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.

Chapter 372, Statutes of 2019 (SB 507, Atkins): San Diego Unified Port District: territory held in trust: State Lands Commission: grant of trust lands: City of San Diego.
This bill would transfer the tide and submerged lands in the Bay, which the State Lands Commission owns and manages, to the San Diego Unified Port District to hold and manage in trust consistent with the terms and conditions of its existing statutory trust grant and the Port act. SB 507 would also grant in trust to the City of San Diego three parcels of land, known as the Famosa Slough Parcels, in conformance with a previously approved land exchange agreement between the City and the Commission.

Chapter 469, Statutes of 2019 (SB 785, Committee on Natural Resources and Water): Public resources: parklands, freshwater resources, and coastal resources: off-highway motor vehicles: public lands.
This bill would repeal the provision ceding jurisdiction over land conveyed pursuant to the provisions authorizing the legislative body of a local agency to convey land that it owns within its boundaries to the United States to be used for federal purposes.

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.