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AB-379 Wildlife conservation: conservation lands.(2021-2022)

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Date Published: 02/01/2021 09:00 PM
AB379:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2021–2022 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 379


Introduced by Assembly Member Gallagher

February 01, 2021


An act to amend Section 1350 of the Fish and Game Code, and to amend Section 5096.516 of the Public Resources Code, relating to conservation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 379, as introduced, Gallagher. Wildlife conservation: conservation lands.
(1) The Wildlife Conservation Law of 1947 establishes the Wildlife Conservation Board in the Department of Fish and Wildlife. Existing law requires the board to investigate, study, and determine the areas in the state that are most suitable for certain wildlife-related purposes.
Existing law authorizes the department, with the approval of the board, to enter into agreements with any other department or agency of this state, any local agency, or nonprofit organization, to provide for the construction, management, or maintenance of the facilities authorized by the board, and authorizes such other department or agency of this state, local agency, or nonprofit organization, and each of them to construct, manage, or maintain those facilities pursuant to the agreement. Existing law authorizes the board to make grants or loans to nonprofit organizations, local governmental agencies, federal agencies, and state agencies for various purposes in connection with fish and wildlife habitats.
This bill would authorize the department to also enter into that type of agreement with a California Native American tribe. The bill would also authorize the board to make grants or loans to California Native American tribes for various purposes in connection with fish and wildlife habitats.
(2) Existing law authorizes various agencies to acquire land for purposes related to conservation. Existing law prohibits, with specified exceptions, conservation lands from being sold to another owner, or having possession and control transferred to another agency, unless specified actions occur. Existing law requires proceeds from the sale or transfer of conservation lands to be used solely for certain purposes, including the acquisition of wildlife habitat to further the purposes of the Wildlife Conservation Law of 1947.
This bill would also exempt from these provisions the sale or transfer of conservation lands to California Native American tribes to improve conservation management, public access, historic preservation, or to protect or enhance the biological value of conservation lands.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 1350 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:

1350.
 (a) The department shall, when authorized by the board, construct in accordance with law such those facilities as are suitable for the purpose for which the real property or rights in real property or water, or water rights rights, were acquired. Each completed project shall be managed and maintained by the department.

The

(2) The department, with the approval of the board, may enter into agreements with any other department or agency of this state, any local agency, any California Native American tribe, as defined in Section 21073 of the Public Resources Code, or any nonprofit organization, to provide for the construction, management, or maintenance of the facilities authorized by the board, and such other department or agency of this state, local agency, California Native American tribe, or nonprofit organization, and each of them may construct, manage, or maintain those facilities pursuant to the agreement. Work performed by a local agency agency, California Native American tribe, or nonprofit organization under those agreements is exempt from Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 14250), of Part 5 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code. Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 10100) of Part 2 of Division 2 of the Public Contract Code. However, nothing in this section shall be construed to exempt any work from Part 7 (commencing with Section 1720) of Division 2 of the Labor Code.
(b) The department, when authorized by the board, may apply for and accept federal grants, and receive gifts, donations, and other financial support from public or private sources to be used for fish and wildlife habitat enhancement, including riparian habitat restoration projects on real property or waters for which the state obtains an interest. Funds received from any of those sources shall be deposited in the Wildlife Restoration Fund.
(c) The board may award grants or loans to nonprofit organizations, local governmental agencies, federal agencies, and state agencies state agencies, and California Native American tribes for the purposes of fish and wildlife habitat restoration, enhancement, management, protection and improvement of riparian resources, and for development of compatible public access facilities in the same manner and subject to the same terms and conditions as prescribed in Section 31116 of the Public Resources Code. Proceeds from repayment of any loans and the interest thereon shall be deposited in the Wildlife Restoration Fund.

SEC. 2.

 Section 5096.516 of the Public Resources Code is amended to read:

5096.516.
 (a) Except as provided in subdivision (c), conservation lands may not be sold to another owner, or have possession and control transferred to another agency, unless all of the following occur:
(1) The selling or transferring agency prepares and makes available to the public a detailed report that identifies why the conservation lands no longer serve a needed conservation purpose.
(2) The selling or transferring agency holds a duly noticed public hearing to accept public comment on the proposed sale or transfer of conservation lands.
(3) After compliance with paragraphs (1) and (2), the selling or transferring agency finds, based on substantial evidence, that the property no longer serves a needed conservation purpose.
(4) The sale or transfer of the land is authorized or approved as part of the annual Budget Act or pursuant to specific legislation authorizing the sale or transfer.
(b) Proceeds from the sale or transfer of conservation lands shall be used solely for one or more of the following purposes:
(1) The acquisition of conservation lands to achieve the same or equivalent objectives as the original acquisition of the property that was sold or transferred.
(2) To further the purposes of Division 21 (commencing with Section 31000).
(3) The acquisition of wildlife habitat to further the purposes of the Wildlife Conservation Law of 1947 (Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1300) of Division 2 of the Fish and Game Code).
(4) The acquisition of wildlife habitat to further the purposes of Article 2 (commencing with Section 1410) of Chapter 4.3 of Division 2 of the Fish and Game Code.
(c) This section does not apply to any of the following:
(1) The sale or transfer of conservation lands solely for the purpose of boundary adjustments or consolidation of property ownership.
(2) The sale or transfer of lands subject to a conservation easement to keep lands in agricultural production.
(3) The sale or transfer to other public agencies agencies, California Native American tribes, as defined in Section 21073, or nonprofit organizations to improve conservation management, public access, historic preservation, or to protect or enhance the biological value of conservation lands.
(4) The sale or transfer of conservation lands by the State Coastal Conservancy when the sale or transfer of interests in land is provided for, consistent with Division 21 (commencing with Section 31000), at the time of acquisition of real property.
(5) The exchange of conservation lands for land of greater biological value as wildlife habitat.
(6) The sale or transfer of conservation lands that have a fair market value of less than one million dollars ($1,000,000).
(d) The requirements imposed by this section are in addition to any other requirements imposed by law or regulation.