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AB-2491 School facilities: organic pesticides: pilot program.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 03/17/2020 04:00 AM
AB2491:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  March 16, 2020

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 2491


Introduced by Assembly Member Choi
(Principal coauthor: Senator Wilk)

February 19, 2020


An act to add Article 5 (commencing with Section 17615) to Chapter 5 of Part 10.5 of Division 1 of Title 1 of the Education Code, relating to school facilities.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2491, as amended, Choi. School facilities: organic pesticides: pilot program.
The Healthy Schools Act of 2000 requires that the preferred method of managing pests at schoolsites, as defined, is to use effective, least toxic pest management practices and requires schoolsites to maintain records of all pesticides used at the schoolsite for a period of 4 years. Existing law requires schools to provide all staff and parents or guardians of pupils enrolled at a schoolsite written notification of, among other things, expected pesticide use at that schoolsite.
This bill would require the State Department of Education, upon appropriation by the Legislature for these purposes, to establish a 5-year pilot program to provide funding to school districts that to use only organic pesticides, both indoors and outdoors, for the purpose of determining the benefits of organic pesticide use and the financial impact on school districts of using organic pesticides instead of chemical pesticides. The bill would authorize certain school districts to apply to participate in the pilot program and would require a participating school district to conduct soil testing, as provided, and to submit an annual report reports to the department and the Legislature. Legislature at the beginning and the end of the pilot program.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Article 5 (commencing with Section 17615) is added to Chapter 5 of Part 10.5 of Division 1 of Title 1 of the Education Code, to read:
Article  5. Organic Pesticide Pilot Program

17615.
 (a) The department, upon appropriation by the Legislature for purposes of this section, shall establish a five-year pilot program to provide funding to school districts to use only organic pesticides, both indoors and outdoors, for the purpose of determining the benefits of organic pesticide use and the financial impact on school districts of using organic pesticides instead of chemical pesticides.
(b) Funding shall be provided to a school district pursuant to this section in the amount that the school district expends for organic pesticides that exceeds what the school district would have spent on chemical pesticides used for the same purposes and for 50 percent of the cost of the soil testing required pursuant subdivision (d).
(c) The following school districts may apply to the department to participate in the pilot program:
(1) Berkeley Unified School District.
(2) Capistrano Unified School District.
(3) Covina-Valley Unified School District.
(4) Menifee Union School District.
(5) Oakland Unified School District.
(6) Ojai Unified School District.
(7) Sacramento City Unified School District.
(8) San Diego Unified School District.
(9) San Francisco Unified School District.
(10) San Ysidro School District.
(11) Woodland Unified School District.
(d) A school district that participates in the pilot program shall, before commencing the exclusive use of organic pesticides, conduct soil testing to measure the amount of chemical pesticide present in the soil. The school district shall thereafter conduct soil testing annually at the end of the five-year pilot program to measure any reductions in the amount of chemical pesticide present in the soil. Soil testing pursuant to this subdivision shall test soil biology, chemistry, and salinity.
(e) A school district that participates in the pilot program shall submit an annual report both of the following reports to the department and the Legislature, in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, that includes all of the following: Code:
(1) At the beginning of the five-year pilot program, a report that includes all of the following:
(A) The costs associated with chemical pesticides used before the pilot project, including, but not limited to, hourly labor costs, pesticide costs, and water usage costs.
(B) Results of the initial soil testing required pursuant to subdivision (d).
(C) A list of organic pesticides used by the school district before commencing the exclusive use of organic pesticides pursuant to the pilot program.
(2) At the end of the five-year pilot program, a report that includes all of the following:

(1)

(A) Information on the cost impact of switching to organic pesticides, including, but not limited to, any changes to hourly labor costs, pesticide costs, and water usage costs.

(2)

(B) Results of the final soil testing required pursuant to subdivision (d).

(3)

(C) The effectiveness of organic pesticides compared to chemical pesticides.