The author of a bill that seeks to ban California law enforcement agencies from cooperating with federal immigration authorities has reached agreement with Gov. Jerry Brown.
“SB 54 will ensure that state and local police are not diverted from protecting our communities in order to enforce federal immigration laws,” Senate President pro Tem Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles), who wrote the bill, said in a statement Monday afternoon. “The protections provided by SB 54 will also ensure undocumented residents can report crimes and assist in prosecutions without fear of deportation.”
The governor’s office confirmed the deal. “This bill protects public safety and people who come to California to work hard and make this state a better place,” read a statement from Brown released by De León’s office.
This is the measure that’s been labeled the “sanctuary state” bill – though neither the governor nor De León likes that label.
For months, immigrant advocates and law enforcement groups have battled over how wide-ranging the bill should be. Details of the deal are expected later this afternoon once amendments to SB 54 are published online.
In other legislative news:
$4 billion parks and water bond moves toward June 2018 ballot
California legislative leaders have reached agreement on a bill that would place a $4 billion dollar parks and water bond on the June 2018 ballot.
The bill, SB 5 by Senate President pro Tem Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles), splits the money into dozens of different pots – including clean drinking water, drought preparedness, climate change, and several new parks initiatives.
The parks section in particular has some noteworthy items.
There’s $725 million for safe neighborhood parks in disadvantaged communities. And every local government would be guaranteed a chunk of change for their own parks projects: $200,000 for each city and $400,000 for each county.
There’s also more than $200 million to restore and preserve existing state parks.
There isn’t any specific money in the bond for the Oroville Dam, since most of those repairs will be paid for by water agencies and the federal government. But the state could use some of the bond’s $300 million for flood protection if the feds don’t cover the full cost – or to improve levees downstream from the dam.
Here's a breakdown of how the money is proposed to be spent:
- Water: $1.2 billion for clean drinking water, drought preparedness, flood protection and repair, groundwater sustainability and water recycling projects.
- Climate and Environment: $1.5 billion for climate preparedness, habitat resiliency, wildlife conservation, river, creek and waterway improvement, and ocean, bay and coastal protection programs.
- Parks: $1.3 billion for parks in disadvantaged "park-poor" neighborhoods; restoration and preservation of state parks; and for city and county regional parks.
The bond still requires supermajority approval in the Assembly and Senate this week – plus the governor’s signature – before it can move to the ballot.
Housing, parks, immigration headline Legislature's final week
California lawmakers have just one week of work left in Sacramento and roughly 600 bills to plow through before they adjourn for the year Friday night.
Major pieces of legislation include:
- A package of bills that seek to address California’s high cost of living, including a $4 billion housing bond and a fee on real estate transaction documents that’s expected to raise several hundred million dollars a year for affordable housing projects.
- A $4 billion parks and water bond.
- The question of whether California should declare itself a ‘sanctuary state’ by banning state and local law enforcement agencies from fully cooperating with federal immigration authorities.
- Shifting the start of the school day for 6th-through-12th graders back from 8 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.
- Moving California’s presidential primary elections up from June to March.