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SB-1215 Provision of sewer service: disadvantaged communities.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/12/2018 09:00 PM
SB1215:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  April 12, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 1215


Introduced by Senator Hertzberg

February 15, 2018


An act to amend Sections 116680, 116681, and 116682 of, and to add Section 116683 to, the Health and Safety add Chapter 4.3 (commencing with Section 13288) to Division 7 of the Water Code, relating to water.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 1215, as amended, Hertzberg. Drinking water systems and sewer systems: consolidation and extension of service. Provision of sewer service: disadvantaged communities.
Existing law declares it to be the established policy of the state that every human being has the right to safe, clean, affordable, and accessible water adequate for human consumption, cooking, and sanitary purposes.
Existing law, the California Safe Drinking Water Act, provides for the operation of public water systems and imposes on the State Water Resources Control Board various responsibilities and duties. The act authorizes the state board to order consolidation with a receiving water system where a public water system or a state small water system, serving a disadvantaged community, as defined, consistently fails to provide an adequate supply of safe drinking water. The act authorizes the state board to order the extension of service to an area that does not have access to an adequate supply of safe drinking water so long as the extension of service is an interim extension of service in preparation for consolidation. The act requires the state board, before ordering consolidation or extension of service, to, among other things, consult with specified entities, hold at least one public meeting, and make certain findings. The act authorizes the state board to set timeline and performance measures to facilitate completion of consolidation.

This bill would also authorize the state board to set timeline and performance measures to facilitate completion of extension of service of drinking water.

This bill would authorize the state board to order consolidation with a receiving sewer system for, or extension of the provision of sewer service to, by a special district, city, or county to a disadvantaged community community, as defined, under specified circumstances. By authorizing the state board to require a special district, city, or county to provide sewer service, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program. The bill would require the state board to take certain actions before ordering consolidation or extension of the provision of sewer service that are similar to those required for the consolidation or extension of water systems and would additionally require the state board to find that at least 75% of the households in the community potentially subject to extension or consolidation of service have agreed to receive sewage service from the receiving sewer system. systems. The bill would authorize the state board to develop and adopt a process by which members of disadvantaged communities may petition the state board for consideration of provision of sewer service.

This bill would expand the definition of “disadvantaged community,” for purposes of these consolidation and extension of service provisions, to also include a defined disadvantaged community that is in an incorporated area but not served by a public water system or wastewater system.

The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NOYES  

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


SECTION 1.

 The Legislature finds and declares that it is critical to protect drinking water and groundwater supplies from failing sewer systems.

SEC. 2.

 Chapter 4.3 (commencing with Section 13288) is added to Division 7 of the Water Code, to read:
CHAPTER  4.3. Sewer Service

13288.
 For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions apply:
(a) “Adequate sewage service” means onsite sewage treatment service or municipal wastewater service that processes and treats wastewater from customers so that untreated wastewater does not contaminate, or does not present an imminent threat to contaminate, surrounding groundwater, surface water, or soils, and does not back up into homes.
(b) “Affected residence” means a residence that may be subject to provision of sewer service pursuant to this chapter.
(c) “Affected resident” means a resident or a property owner of an affected residence.
(d) “Annexation” has the same meaning as set forth in Section 56017 of the Government Code.
(e) “Disadvantaged community” means a disadvantaged community as defined in Section 79505.5.
(f) “Provision of sewer service” means the provision of adequate sewage service to a disadvantaged community by any of the following processes:
(1) Annexation where the receiving sewer system is a special district.
(2) Extension of service where the receiving sewer system is a city or county.
(g) “Receiving sewer system” means the sewer system that provides service to a disadvantaged community that lacks adequate sewage service pursuant to this chapter.
(h) “Special district” means a special district as defined in Section 56036 of the Government Code.

13289.
 (a) Where a disadvantaged community or residents of a disadvantaged community are served by an onsite sewage treatment system operated by a local agency, as defined in Section 13290, or by an affected residence that does not provide adequate onsite sewage treatment service, the state board may order the provision of sewer service by a receiving sewer system to the disadvantaged community, or to all or a portion of the area within the disadvantaged community, that does not have adequate sewage service. The state board may set timelines and performance measures to facilitate completion of the provision of sewer service.
(b) (1) Before ordering the provision of sewer service as provided in this section, the state board shall do all of the following:
(A) Encourage voluntary annexation or extension of service.
(B) Consider other enforcement remedies specified in this division.
(C) Consult with, and fully consider input from, the relevant local agency formation commission regarding the sewer service in the affected area, the recommendations for improving service in a municipal service review, and any other relevant information.
(D) Consult with, and fully consider input from, the regional water quality control board.
(E) Consult with, and fully consider input from, the local government with land use planning authority and environmental health oversight over the affected area, particularly regarding any information in the general plan required by Section 65302.10 of the Government Code.
(F) (i)    Notify the potentially receiving sewer system and affected residents, and establish a reasonable deadline of no less than six months, unless a shorter period is justified, for the potentially receiving sewer system and the affected property owners to negotiate annexation, extension of service, or another means of providing an adequate sewage service.
(ii) During the period set forth in clause (i), the state board shall provide technical assistance and work with the potentially receiving sewer system and the affected residents to develop a financing package that benefits both the receiving sewer system and the affected residents.
(iii) Upon a showing of good cause, the deadline set forth in clause (i) may be extended by the state board at the request of the potentially receiving sewer system, the affected residents, or the local agency formation commission with jurisdiction over the sewer system.
(G) Hold at least one public meeting at the initiation of the process established in this section in a place as close as feasible to the affected areas. The state board shall make reasonable efforts to provide a 30-day notice of the meeting to the affected residents and all affected local government agencies and sewer service providers. The meeting shall provide representatives of the affected residents and the potentially receiving sewer system an opportunity to present testimony. The meeting shall provide an opportunity for public comment.
(2) Upon expiration of the deadline set by the state board pursuant to subparagraph (F) of paragraph (1), the state board shall do the following:
(A) Consult with the potentially receiving sewer system and the affected residents.
(B) (i)  Conduct a public hearing in a location as close as feasible to the affected communities.
(ii) The state board shall make reasonable efforts to provide a 30-day notice of the hearing to the affected residents and to all affected local government agencies and sewer service providers.
(iii) The hearing shall provide affected residents and the potentially receiving sewer system an opportunity to present testimony.
(iv) The hearing shall provide an opportunity for public comment.
(3) Before ordering the provision of sewer service, the state board shall find all of the following:
(A) The affected residences do not have adequate sewage service.
(B) All reasonable efforts to negotiate voluntary annexation or extension of service were made.
(C) The provision of sewer service is appropriate and technically and economically feasible.
(D) There is no pending local agency formation commission process that is likely to resolve the problem in a reasonable amount of time.
(E) The provision of sewer service is the most effective and cost-effective means to provide adequate sewage service.
(F) The capacity of the proposed interconnection needed to accomplish the provision of sewer service is limited to serving the affected residences, as determined by the state board.
(4) Upon ordering the provision of sewer service, the state board shall do all of the following:
(A) As necessary and appropriate, make funds available, upon appropriation by the Legislature, to the receiving sewer system for the costs of completing the provision of sewer service, including, but not limited to, replacing any capacity lost as a result of the provision of sewer service, providing additional capacity needed as a result of the provision of sewer service, and legal fees. Funding pursuant to this subparagraph is available for the general purpose of providing financial assistance for the infrastructure needed for the provision of sewer service and does not need to be specific to each individual project. The state board shall provide appropriate financial assistance for the infrastructure needed for the provision of sewer service. The state board’s existing financial assistance guidelines and policies shall be the basis for the financial assistance.
(B) Ensure payment of standard local agency formation commission fees caused by state board’s order.
(C) Coordinate with the appropriate local agency formation commission and other relevant local agencies to facilitate the change of organization or reorganization.
(d) The receiving sewer system shall not increase charges on existing customers of the receiving sewer system solely as a consequence of the provision of sewer service unless the customers receive a corresponding benefit.
(e) The receiving sewer system shall not charge rates to newly absorbed customers of the sewer system that are higher than those necessary to provide the sewage service.
(f) Division 3 (commencing with Section 56000) of Title 5 of the Government Code shall not apply to the provision of sewer service required pursuant to this section.
(g) The state board may develop and adopt a process by which members of a disadvantaged community may petition the state board for consideration of provision of sewer service pursuant to this chapter.

SEC. 3.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because a local agency or school district has the authority to levy service charges, fees, or assessments sufficient to pay for the program or level of service mandated by this act, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code.
However, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains other costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.