Chamber Government Committee Makes Recommendations
Ballot measure, pending legislation subject of Chamber discussions.
The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce recently announced its position on three issues, one on the November ballot and two currently working their way through the House of Representatives and the California State Senate. The analysis and recommendations came from the chamber’s Governmental Affairs Committee.
November ballot - Proposition 7
California has the most aggressive renewable clean energy targets in the country. California law requires that 20% of electricity sold to customers be renewable by 2010. State energy agencies and the Governor have established a 33% target by 2020, and there is proposed legislation, SB411, to make this target state law.
Proposition 7 and the Solar and Clean Energy Act of 2008 does nothing to address the barriers that have been identified by energy agencies. Prop 7 would require energy agencies to have 50% of electricity sold to customers to be renewable by 2025. The committee felt this was unrealistic and not achievable. In that regard, the committee voted to OPPOSE Proposition 7.
HR 6156 - The Eastern Sierra and Northern San Gabriel Wild Heritage Act
Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon has submitted a bi-partisan house bill to protect 430,671 acres of wilderness in Mono and Inyo Counties as Wild and Scenic Rivers. The committee felt this bill was a good compromise in regards to the amount of land that had been proposed to set aside for this wilderness area. Additionally, other uses are permitted on this land and adjacent to this land that will provide recreational usage to groups seeking different kind of recreational activities (motorized vehicles, snowmobiles, etc.). HR 6156 has support on a bi-partisan basis in both the US House and Senate. The Governmental Affairs Committee voted to SUPPORT HR 6156.
SB 1646 - Clean Fuels Program Reauthorization
SB 1646 would reauthorize the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s (AQMD) successful, long-standing Clean Fuels Program. Specifically, it would remove the 2009 sunset on AQMD’s authority under the Vehicle Code to levy a $1 fee on motor vehicles registered within the District to fund the Clean Fuels Program. The fee funds important clean air technology research, development, and demonstration programs in the region. Up to 5% of the fees generated may be used for costs to administer the program. The Governmental Affairs Committee felt the previous use of the funds showed accountability, and these funds leveraged hundreds of millions of dollars in private capitol for further research and development. The committee voted to SUPPORT SB 1646.