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State Lawmakers Move Bag Ban, Film Credits, Other High-Profile Bills

State Lawmakers Move Bag Ban, Film Credits, Other High-Profile Bills
Posted August 14th, 2014 @ 2:31pm by KFBK News - Mike Simpson

There are just over two weeks left in this legislative session, and now that state lawmakers have put a water bond on the ballot, they're tackling hundreds of other bills.

The Senate Appropriations Committee worked through more than 300 today, while Assembly Appropriations acted on 150.

A heavily-lobbied ban on single-use plastic bags made it out of a key committee hearing today, the last hurdle before reaching a floor vote by the full Assembly. Manufacturers argue it would eliminate thousands of jobs, while the legislation's author, Democratic Senator Alex Padilla, points to a hundred local and regional bans already in effect.

Lawmakers also pushed forward a plan to increase film production tax credits, deciding on a $400 million level that the mayors of LA and San Francisco have publicly pushed for.

"To halt that steady outward march of jobs and creativity, California must have a robust, smart, and efficient tax incentive program of our own -- a tax incentive program that guarantees job growth and economic expansion, coupled with strong accountability and transparency measures," de León said in a statement.

A bill that would guarantee paid sick days for all workers also moved ahead, as did a measure for "gun restraining orders." Police agencies would be allowed to seize weapons from those deemed a danger.

Passing out of the Assembly itself were measures that would make it more difficult for companies to close down franchise locations and a measure that would make sentencing for crack cocaine equal to that of powered cocaine. It aims to close a disparity in sentencing among racial groups. They now head to the Senate for final approval.

A bill to modify birth certificates to to accommodate same-sex couples who become parents will also likely see the governor's desk.

Birth certificates would have three check boxes: mother, father and parent.

A measure to require medical marijuana dispensaries and growers to get state licenses and require condoms for performers in adult films were shelved in their committee hearings.

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