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AB-722 Water: dams: fees.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 04/02/2019 09:00 PM
AB722:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 02, 2019
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 14, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 722


Introduced by Assembly Member Bigelow

February 19, 2019


An act to amend Section 6307 of the Water Code, relating to water.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 722, as amended, Bigelow. Water: dams: fees.
Existing law requires the Department of Water Resources to supervise the maintenance and operation of dams and reservoirs as necessary to safeguard life and property. Existing law requires the department to adopt, by regulation, a schedule of fees to cover the department’s costs in carrying out the supervision of dam safety. Existing law limits the total annual fee for a dam or reservoir located on a farm or ranch property or a privately owned dam with less than 100 acre-feet of storage capacity to no more than 20% of the fees assessed pursuant to the schedule of fees.
This bill would limit the total annual fee for a dam located in a disadvantaged community operated by certain irrigation districts to no more than 20% of the fees assessed pursuant to the schedule of fees.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 6307 of the Water Code is amended to read:

6307.
 (a) (1) The department shall adopt, by regulation, a schedule of fees to cover the department’s reasonable regulatory costs in carrying out the supervision of dam safety, which may include, but is not limited to, the costs of reviewing an inundation map, the amounts necessary to repay budgetary loans, and a prudent reserve.
(2) The revenue generated by the fees imposed under this section shall be adjusted periodically for cost-of-living increases. If the director determines that the revenue collected during the preceding fiscal year was greater or less than the cost to operate the program, the director shall adjust the fees to compensate for the overcollection or undercollection of revenue. The department shall provide a schedule of fees to the Legislature and to every dam owner that has a permit or has applied for a permit, when any adjustment is made to the fees under this section.
(3) The schedule of fees adopted pursuant to this subdivision shall be based, in part, on the height of the dam on a per foot basis.
(b) A penalty plus interest, as set forth in subdivision (b) of Section 6428, shall be imposed for fees received after July 1 in any year. This penalty does not apply to any supplemental billing issued by the department.
(c) For the purposes of this section, “height of the dam” means the vertical distance, to the nearest foot, from the natural bed of the stream or watercourse at the downstream toe of the barrier, as determined by the department, or from the lowest elevation of the outside limit of the barrier, as determined by the department, if it is not across a stream channel or watercourse, to the maximum possible water storage elevation.
(d) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the department shall limit the total annual fee per dam if both of the following apply:
(1) The dam has a storage capacity of not more than 100 acre-feet.
(2) The governing body of a private school or the governing board of a public school certifies that the dam is used as a subject of study by its students.
(e) (1) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the department shall limit the total annual fee for dams or reservoirs located on farms or ranch properties to no more than 20 percent of the fees assessed pursuant to subdivision (a).
(2) For purposes of this subdivision, “farm” has the same meaning as defined in Section 52262 of the Food and Agricultural Code.
(f) (1) Privately owned dams with less than 100 acre-feet of storage capacity shall be assessed an annual fee in accordance with paragraph (1) of subdivision (e).
(2) As used in this subdivision, “privately owned” does not include dams owned by municipalities, water districts or companies, irrigation districts, private, investor owned private investor-owned or publicly owned utilities, or public agencies.
(g) Dams located in a disadvantaged community, as defined in Section 79505.5, Any dam operated by an irrigation district formed under Division 11 (commencing with Section 20500) with a ratepayer base of 500 ratepayers or less shall be assessed an annual fee in accordance with paragraph (1) of subdivision (e).
(h) Any regulation promulgated pursuant to this section shall be deemed to be an emergency and necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health and safety, or general welfare.