Today's Law As Amended


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AB-448 Fire safety: electrical transmission or distribution lines: clearances: notice and opportunity to be heard.(2021-2022)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.

 Section 4295.5 of the Public Resources Code is amended to read:

4295.5.
 (a) (1)  Notwithstanding any other law, including Section 4295, any a  person who owns, controls, operates, or maintains any an  electrical transmission or distribution line may traverse land as necessary, regardless of land ownership or express permission to traverse land from the landowner, after providing notice and an opportunity to be heard to the landowner, to prune  fell, cut, or trim  trees to maintain clearances pursuant to Section 4293, and  4293 and Rule 35 of the Public Utilities Commission’s General Order 95, and  to abate, by pruning  felling, cutting,  or removal, trimming,  any hazardous, dead, rotten, diseased, leaning,  or structurally defective live trees. The felling, cutting, and trimming of these trees, and the  clearances obtained when the pruning is performed  felling, cutting, or trimming the trees,  shall be at the full discretion of the person that owns, controls, operates, or maintains any an  electrical transmission or distribution line, but shall not  be no  less than what is required in Section 4293.  4293 and Rule 35 of the Public Utilities Commission’s General Order 95.  This section shall apply to both high fire threat districts, as determined by the California  Public Utilities Commission pursuant to its rulemaking authority, and to state responsibility areas.
(b) (2)  Nothing in subdivision (a) shall exempt any  Identification of hazardous, dead, rotten, diseased, leaning, or structurally defective live trees that are to be felled, cut, or trimmed pursuant to this section shall be accomplished by using a tree evaluation tool or method, developed or approved by an arborist certified by the International Society of Arboriculture. Any trees that are felled, cut, or trimmed pursuant to this section, if valuable timber or wood, shall remain the property of the landowner unless the removal of the wood is timely requested by the landowner, in which case the  person who owns, controls, operates, or maintains any an  electrical transmission or distribution line from liability for damages for the removal of vegetation that is not covered by any easement granted to him or her for the electrical transmission or distribution line. shall remove the wood at no cost to the landowner. 
(b) The Office of Energy Infrastructure Safety shall, on or before April 1, 2022, develop the following:
(1) Standardized content for a letter that shall satisfy the landowner notice requirement described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a).
(2) Standardized content for use by a landowner to request the removal of wood as described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a).
(3) A process for a landowner to exercise the opportunity to be heard, established in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a), when challenging the proposed traversal of land and any felling, cutting, or trimming of trees.
SEC. 2.
 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.