California Legislative Session Continues to be Monitored
By Jon Wreschinsky, CCASLA Representative
CCASLA continues to monitor the Landscape Architects Technical Committee (LATC) Sunset Review Process. The latest information on the review process includes passage of SB543 (Price) -- legislation that includes extension of the LATC sunset date for another four years. Following action by the Senate Business, Professions and Economic Development Committee which included public input by CCASLA representatives, the bill proceeded out of the Committee to the full Senate where it was passed nearly unanimously. The bill has been sent to the Assembly for action. CCASLA will continue to monitor progress of the bill and will report any actions from licensees required in support of the bill should it become necessary. CCASLA has submitted several letters of support on behalf of all California licensees during this process and will continue to do so until final passage. For further information, contact your current CCASLA representative or LATC.
The CCASLA Board also continues to actively track key bills in the current legislative session. Letters of support have been submitted for the following pieces of legislation:
For further information on these and other legislative issues, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, 619-916-6956 or Jim Taylor, our other CCASLA representative.
- SB644 (Hancock)/AB587 (Gordon), Public works: volunteers – Legislation specifically drafted to extend the ability of various volunteer organizations to provide free labor in order to help preserve both the natural and cultural resources throughout California. Many of these resources would otherwise fall into a state of further deterioration given that current governmental funding cannot support such actions. CCASLA’s support of these bills is directly tied to protecting landscape architects from certain liability issues that could be associated with deterioration of built works and deferred maintenance.
- SB 190 (Lowenthal), Mechanics Liens/SB 424 (Rubio), Mechanics Liens: Design Professional – Legislation that includes amendments to the existing Mechanics Lien Laws to include the profession of landscape architecture is being actively supported by CCASLA. These bills will address practitioner’s rights to pursue legal recourse for non-payment of design fees among other actions.
- SB 67 (Price), Public Contracts: Small Business Participation – Will amend existing law to establish goals for the participation of small businesses in public procurement contracts for the provision of goods, services, information technology and for the construction of state facilities and will provide for small business preferences in the award of these contracts, give special consideration and special assistance to small businesses, and, whenever possible, make awards to small businesses. This legislation will benefit landscape architects in their ability to pursue such work both as prime contractors and sub-contractors.
- SB 264 (Correa), Recreational Activities – Skate Parks – CCASLA has submitted a letter of support for this bill which will extend indefinitely recognition of skateboarding at a public skateboard park as a hazardous recreational activity. In doing so, it will help limit the liability of landscape architects who might be involved in the design and construction of such facilities.
- AB 275 (Solorio), Rainwater Capture Act of 2011; AB 685 (Eng), State Water Policy; AB 745, California Water Plan; AB 849 (Gatto), Water: Use Efficiency – CCASLA will continue to follow these bills, each which pertains in some manner to the use of water in the landscape and advocate for the interests of landscape architects. This advocacy includes recent actions where on May, 18, CCASLA monitored and provided public comment at a meeting of the Assembly Select Committee on Regional Approaches to Addressing the State Water Crisis. The meeting focused on several issues including local implementation of the Model Landscape Water Ordinance, the advent of rainwater capture systems and other regional innovations in landscape water use. CCASLA will be following up this meeting with the Chairman of the Committee, the Hon. Jose Solorio (Dem-69) who has expressed an interest in learning more about our profession and the contributions landscape architects are making on a daily basis to help solve the State’s water issues.