Hear Director, Regina Banks, and Hunger Advocacy Fellow, Savannah Jorgensen, give public testimony in support of SB 4 (Wiener) and SB 253 (Wiener) at the Assembly Natural Resources Committee hearing on Monday, July 10th.
These two bills are continuing to move forward following committee hearings this week as we approach the deadline for bills to make it out of their second house policy committees. The next step is the Appropriations Committee before a floor vote. These bills can use our continued advocacy!
- SB 4 (Wiener): Affordable Housing on Faith-Based Lands Act. This bill would provide a streamlined process for religious institutions and nonprofit colleges to develop affordable housing on their properties, regardless of local zoning restrictions. This bill also would guarantee by-right approval of projects as long as they are consistent with all objective standards of the jurisdiction and comply with listed environmental protections.
- AB 249 (Holden): Clean Drinking Water in Schools, Lead Testing. This bill increases the testing and disclosure requirements of school drinking water lead levels. It would additionally allocate funding for testing filters and infrastructure improvements to reduce and ultimately, eliminate, lead in water at schools. Furthermore, the bill establishes the limit on lead levels that the drinking water cannot exceed.
The following bill did not move forward from the Senate Agriculture Committee, however, Asm. Irwin has made it a two-year bill. This means that it will be worked on and considered in the next legislative session. Additionally, there is a federal level bill addressing food date labeling that is moving and can use our advocacy.
- AB 660 (Irwin): Food Date Labeling Reform, Food Waste. This bill requires the use of uniform terms for food product date labels, i.e., removing ‘sell by’ dates visible to consumers and making ‘best by’ or ‘use by’ dates clearer for consumers. The streamlined phrasing will help consumers understand peak quality and freshness of their food, which will play a role in addressing hunger as well as methane emissions and climate change.
The following bill did not pass through the Assembly Appropriations Committee in May and is effectively a dead bill for this session. This policy idea may be pursued in the future by legislators if there is enough community support.
- AB 1534 (Irwin): Methane Emissions Monitoring. AB 1534 would have required the utilization of remote sensing technologies to better identify methane emissions with the goal of improved regulations on those emissions from landfills.
Thank you all for your continued advocacy! Our work is not done this year and we need your support to get SB 4 and AB 249 across the finish line.
SB 4 (Wiener): Affordable housing on faith-based lands – passed out of Assembly Natural Resources Committee with amendments on 7/10. It next heads to Appropriations.
SB 253 (Wiener): Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act – passed out of Assembly Natural Resources Committee with amendments on 7/10: It next heads to Appropriations.
**Any bills still active as of today will need to be passed out of their respective policy committees by the end of the day on Friday, July 14th to meet the legislative deadline. Bills that do make it to Appropriations will need our support in those committees. From there, we encourage you to start calling your representatives to urge them to support these and our other priority bills on the floor.
Federal advocacy: Please complete the ELCA Advocacy Action Alert on the Endangered Species Act. You can do so here.
AiQ schedule: We will NOT be meeting for AiQ until Wednesday, August 16th on account of the legislative summer recess (July 14th-August 14th).
Thanks to our continued advocacy, SB 4 (Wiener) The Affordable Housing on Faith-Based Lands Act, has passed out of the Senate! Continue to engage with us at AiQ to hear about how you can continue its advancement in the Assembly this summer.
AB 660 (Irwin)– Food Waste, Labeling Reform, passed out of the Assembly this week as well.
Food4All legislation has passed out of the Senate. The partner Assembly bill, AB 311, is still on the Assembly floor.
Please call your Assemblymembers and tell them to support AB 249 (Holden)- Clean School Drinking Water, on the Assembly Floor!
3 of our 4 Lobby Day bills passed out of their Appropriations committees! SB 4 (Wiener), AB 249 (Holden), and AB 660 (Irwin) will be heard and voted on in the Senate and Assembly in the coming weeks. Reach out to your Senator and Assemblymember to urge them to support these bills.
SB 4 (Wiener) is likely being acted on TODAY (5/25)! If you haven’t already called your Senator, do so early today!
Check out the following conversation with Hunger Advocacy Fellow, Savannah Jorgensen, and California EnviroVoters Legislative Affairs Manager, Fatima Iqbal-Zubair, as they discuss 3 environmental bills we’re tracking ahead of Lutheran Lobby Day 2023.
These bills may be on the docket for our advocacy on Lobby Day. Hopefully this conversation helps you as we prepare for that day and future advocacy!
SB 253 (Wiener)- The Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act is being heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 18. If your senator is on this committee, reach out and tell them to support it! If they are not on this committee, tell them to support it on the Senate floor!
AB 660 (Irwin)- Updating expiration/use-by dates on food packaging, is being heard in the Assembly Health Committee on April 18. If your assemblymember is on this committee, reach out and tell them to support it! If they are not on this committee, tell them to support it on the Assembly floor!
ELCA Advocacy News: Farm Bill listening sessions are only a week away! Sign up for the Pacific Time Zone session here. These sessions will focus on the federal Farm Bill that’s up for reauthorization this year with a time zone area focus. The Pacific Time zone focused session will take place on Friday, April 21 at 12 noon PT.
The Southwest California Synod hosted a meeting on World Water Day for celebrations, reflections, and calls-to-action on water and water justice. Here are some bills related to water that LOPP-CA is tracking in the state right now:
AB 1453 (Dixon)- Would require a 5-yr grant program to be established by the coastal conservancy to fund regular cleanups of beaches and waterways
AB 664 (Lee)- Would address safe drinking water in domestic wells at rental properties
AB 249 (Holden)- Would increase testing requirements & disclosure requirements of school drinking water lead levels; would also include infrastructure funding to improve water quality
Join us at AIQ on Wednesdays at 12pm Pacific Time to hear about these and other bills we can advocate around for water justice. Find the Zoom information here.
Remember to register for Lutheran Lobby Day 2023! Water issues fall under our theme of environmental justice and creation care. Register here!
SB 253 (Wiener)- The Climate Corporate Leadership & Data Accountability Act, a bill LOPPCA is strongly supporting along with our various coalition partners, is being heard in committee TODAY! Call your state Senator and urge them to support this crucial bill.
ELCA Advocacy call for public comment on harmful proposed asylum rule: Comment by March 27th! Find out more on the proposed rule and take action here.
Next Wednesday, March 22nd, is World Water Day. Instead of our regular AIQ meeting on that day, we will be joining Southwest California Synod from 12-1 pm for their annual celebration of World Water Day. There will be several speakers, including our Director, Regina Banks. We hope to see you there! You can sign up here to attend the event. The regularly scheduled AIQ will be back on March 29th.
Our fearless leader, Regina Banks, is attending the 27th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP27) in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt from November 6th-November 18th. A week and a half has already passed and Regina has been in a whirlwind of networking, connecting with other delegates, meetings, and events. What exactly has it been like to be part of an advocacy delegation from the US at COP27? Hear about it from Regina in this interview with Texas Impact! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YSbXstXDQ_o