Legislature Resumes Committee Hearings, Pro Tem Announces Committee Chair Changes

This week, the California State Legislature resumed committee hearings after last week’s floor-only session and deadline for measures to be advanced out of their house of origin. June is expected to be a very busy month with a significant number of committee hearings prior to the summer recess in July.

Notably this week, Senate President pro Tempore Toni Atkins announced the appointment of Senator Richard Pan as chair of the Senate Health Committee, Senator Anthony Portantino as chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Senator Ricardo Lara as chair of the Senate Labor and Industrial Relations Committee, succeeding Senators Ed Hernandez, Steven Bradford and Ricardo Lara respectively. Senator Hernandez remains a member of the Health Committee.

Below, we highlight a couple bills of interest to CHEAC Members. For a full update, our CHEAC Weekly Bill Chart is available here.

Environmental Health

AB 626 (E. Garcia) as amended on May 9, 2018 – Oppose

The hearing for AB 626 in the Senate Health Committee has been pushed back one week and will now be heard on Wednesday, June 20. This measure would create a new type of food facility defined as a “microenterprise home kitchen” in the California Retail Food Code and allow the sale of potentially hazardous foods directly to consumers in private homes. These entities would be provided a significant number of exemptions related to enforcement, health, and sanitation provisions.

CHEAC, along with our county colleagues HOAC, CCDEH, CSAC, UCC, and RCRC, is opposed to the measure due to concerns about increased risk of foodborne illness and inspections and enforcement. We strongly encourage LHDs to secure an official oppose position to AB 626, send in letters of opposition, and contact Senate Health Committee members and staff. CHEAC will continue to provide updates to members as the hearing date nears.

Chronic Disease Prevention and Wellness Promotion

AB 3043 (Berman) as amended April 11, 2018 – Support

AB 3043 by Assembly Member Marc Berman was advanced from the Senate Education Committee to the Senate Appropriations Committee this week. The measure would authorize any educational entity that participates in the federal School Breakfast Program to provide a universal breakfast program through which a nutritionally adequate breakfast is provided to every pupil at no charge. AB 3043 would also increase the award amount of California Department of Education grants to initiate or expand a school breakfast program or federal summer meals program upon budgetary appropriation.