The Latest: California clean energy bill advances
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on action in the California Legislature (all times local):
California would set a goal of generating 100 percent of the state’s energy from carbon-free sources under legislation approved by the state Assembly.
The bill approved Tuesday would accelerate California’s renewable energy mandate from 50 percent to 60 percent by 2030. It would then set a goal of phasing out all fossil fuels by 2045, but it does not include a mandate or penalty.
Supporters say the measure would help address climate change and boost California’s clean energy economy.
Critics say it’s unrealistic and would saddle families and businesses with higher energy bills.
The measure returns to the Senate which must approve changes made in the Assembly. It was written by Democratic Sen. Kevin de Leon, who is challenging fellow Democratic U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein.
California lawmakers have begun tightening a law that prosecutors say could have freed serious felons who completed two years of mental health treatment.
The state Assembly on Tuesday approved cleanup language unanimously and without debate, sending the measure to the Senate for a final vote.
The law that Gov. Jerry Brown signed in June greatly expands the number of suspects who can be diverted to mental health treatment programs and have their charges dismissed.
The new version eliminates certain offenses from diversion, including murder, manslaughter, rape, and other sexual offenses.
Brown requested many of the changes. Democratic Sen. Jim Beall of San Jose says they better protect public safety.
Prosecutors say the revisions still don’t close a loophole that could allow mentally ill offenders to continue owning firearms.
The California Senate has approved legislation to raise the age to purchase a rifle or shotgun from 18 to 21.
The legislation approved Tuesday would extend the higher age limit that already applies to handguns.
Supporters say some of the nation’s most horrific mass shootings have been committed by young adults carrying rifles.
Critics say the bill would take gun rights from adults, prohibiting them from buying a gun to defend themselves.
The measure by Democratic Sen. Anthony Portantino of the Los Angeles area was approved in a 42-28 vote. It returns to the Senate which must agree to changes made in the Assembly.
The California state Assembly has approved legislation limiting the state’s “felony murder” rule that holds accomplices to the same standard as if they had personally killed someone.
Supporters say it is unjust that accomplices can face execution or life prison sentences even if they were unaware that a killing would or did take place.
The bill would limit murder convictions to those who actually commit murders; those who “with the intent to kill” knowingly aid, solicit or assist the killer; and those who are major participants and act with reckless indifference to human life.
The Assembly approved the measure on a 46-20 vote Tuesday, sending it back to the Senate for a vote on an amendment exempting those who knowingly participate in the slaying of a peace officer.
California is creating an office of elections cybersecurity to combat cyber threats and false information online.
Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation Tuesday creating the office under the secretary of state.
The state budget included $2 million annually for the office.
It will work with state, local and federal agencies to share information about cyber threats, develop emergency preparedness plans and recommend ways to protect election infrastructure.
The office would also be in charge of counteracting false information about the electoral process online, such as the date elections are being held or how to register to vote.
Critics say that could lead to the suppression of speech. But supporters argue the office will target false information about the voting process and not regulate political opinions.