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AB-897 Office of Planning and Research: regional climate networks: climate adaptation action plans.(2021-2022)

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Date Published: 02/17/2021 09:00 PM
AB897:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2021–2022 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 897


Introduced by Assembly Member Mullin

February 17, 2021


An act to add Sections 71133 and 71134 to, and to add and repeal Section 71135 of, the Public Resources Code, relating to climate change.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 897, as introduced, Mullin. Office of Planning and Research: regional climate networks: climate adaptation action plans.
Existing law requires, by July 1, 2017, and every 3 years thereafter, the Natural Resources Agency to update, as prescribed, the state’s climate adaptation strategy, known as the Safeguarding California Plan. Existing law establishes the Office of Planning and Research in state government in the Governor’s office. Existing law establishes the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program to be administered by the office to coordinate regional and local efforts with state climate adaptation strategies to adapt to the impacts of climate change, as prescribed.
This bill would authorize eligible entities, as defined, to establish and participate in a regional climate network, as defined. The bill would require the office to encourage the inclusion of agencies with land use planning authority into regional climate networks.
This bill would authorize a regional climate network to develop a regional climate adaptation action plan, as described. The bill would require, by July 1, 2022, the office to develop guidelines, as prescribed, establishing how a regional climate network may develop a regional climate adaptation action plan, including certain information, analyses, and contents to be included in a plan and certain considerations and procedures for a regional climate network when preparing a plan.
The bill would require the office to provide technical assistance to eligible entities developing regional climate networks and plans. The bill would require, by July 1, 2022, the office to make recommendations to certain policy committees of the Legislature on developing state support for the work of regional climate networks, as prescribed, and the potential sources of financial assistance and options for distributing state funds to support the creation and implementation of plans.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 It is the intent of the Legislature to do all of the following:
(a) Encourage and support regional climate adaptation planning that builds upon and enhances local climate adaptation actions to reduce climate risk and help achieve multiple benefits, including benefits to public health, to the protection of infrastructure and natural resources, and to California’s economy.
(b) Foster collaboration among local, regional, and state entities on climate adaptation solutions in a way that promotes coordination within each region of the state, as well as coordination among neighboring regions.
(c) Develop guidance for potential state, federal, or private investment in funding regional priority climate adaptation projects in California.
(d) Build upon the work of the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program under the Office of Planning and Research.
(e) Reduce the risk of climate change impacts across the state, including, but not limited to, extreme heat, wildfire, sea level rise, drought, and flooding.

SEC. 2.

 Section 71133 is added to the Public Resources Code, to read:

71133.
 For purposes of this section and Section 71134, the following definitions apply:
(a) “Eligible entity” means a local, regional, or state organization, including, but not limited to, a city, county, special district, council of government, metropolitan planning organization, climate collaborative, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 71130, regional member of the Alliance of Regional Collaboratives for Climate Adaptation, and nonprofit organization.
(b) “Plan” means a regional climate adaptation action plan.
(c) “Region” shall be defined by the Office of Planning and Research, based on the regions identified in California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment, or subsequent updates. The Office of Planning and Research may also consider the geographic boundaries of a metropolitan planning organization responsible for the development of a sustainable communities strategy pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (b) of Section 65080 of the Government Code.
(d) “Regional climate network” means a group of two or more eligible entities whose jurisdictions are located in the same region, and whose combined jurisdiction enhances their effectiveness in responding to climate risks.

SEC. 3.

 Section 71134 is added to the Public Resources Code, to read:

71134.
 (a) Eligible entities may establish and participate in a regional climate network. Eligible entities shall consult with the Office of Planning and Research before establishing a regional climate network. Eligible entities shall notify the Office of Planning and Research in writing of the establishment, expansion, or consolidation of a regional climate network.
(b) A regional climate network may be expanded or consolidated at any time consistent with this section.
(c) The Office of Planning and Research shall facilitate coordination between regions and encourage regions to incorporate as many eligible entities into one network as feasible, taking into consideration each region’s unique vulnerabilities and land use challenges. The Office of Planning and Research shall also encourage the inclusion of entities with land use planning authority into regional climate networks.
(d) A regional climate network may develop a regional climate adaptation action plan.
(e) On or before July 1, 2022, the Office of Planning and Research shall develop guidelines that establish how a regional climate network may develop a regional climate adaptation action plan. The guidelines shall establish standards and required content for a regional climate adaptation action plan, including, but not limited to, all of the following:
(1) A description of the climate vulnerabilities the plan seeks to address, and planning assumptions as they relate to the climate vulnerabilities identified in the plan.
(2) An identification of key challenges and barriers to building resilience to climate adaptation facing the region.
(3) A prioritization of projects or actions that are necessary to respond to the climate vulnerabilities facing the region.
(4) Clear identification of the adaptation goals the priority projects or actions are designed to achieve, and the anticipated benefits, including, when feasible, metrics to reflect these benefits. When prioritizing projects or actions in a plan, a regional climate network shall consider all of the following:
(A) The expected nature and anticipated timing of the climate vulnerability that the project or action seeks to address and the ability of the project or action to minimize climate change impacts.
(B) Equity considerations, including the impacts the project or action has on economically disadvantaged communities, climate-vulnerable communities, as defined by the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program’s advisory council established pursuant to Section 71358, and other communities at risk of being disproportionately impacted by climate change.
(C) The benefits of the project or action on public health, infrastructure, and natural resources.
(D) Any cobenefits generated by the project or action.
(5) An assessment of the regional climate adaptation action plan’s ability to create regional benefits in response to climate vulnerabilities.
(6) A schedule for phasing implementation of projects and actions across a region.
(7) Required monitoring to assess the ongoing effectiveness of projects and actions and to determine appropriate course corrections, to minimize the impacts of climate change within a region.
(8) An assessment of the cost of, and the associated financing strategy for, implementing the plan’s priority projects and actions, including the costs of ongoing monitoring and any necessary postimplementation evaluations.
(9) The use of natural infrastructure to respond to climate vulnerabilities where feasible.
(10) A timeline for the regional climate network to revisit the plan to reassess and make necessary updates to the plan. The regional climate network shall be encouraged to update the plan at least once every five years.
(11) Use of the best available science as research, observations, and understanding of the impact of emissions of greenhouse gases advance.
(12) Planning information from existing and relevant local or regional planning documents, to the extent appropriate, including, but not limited to, all of the following:
(A) Climate adaptation action plans and vulnerability assessments.
(B) Safety elements of general plans.
(C) Local hazard mitigation plans.
(D) Sustainable communities strategies.
(E) Certified local coastal programs that have been updated to address sea level rise.
(F) Groundwater sustainability plans.
(G) Urban water management plans.
(H) Regional transportation plans.
(I) Long-range county transportation plans.
(J) Coastal management programs and plans.
(f) The guidelines developed pursuant to this section shall go through a public process that encourages participation from impacted communities, including, but not limited to, community-based organizations, nongovernmental organizations, private sector groups, and relevant state agencies.
(g) The Office of Planning and Research shall provide technical assistance to eligible entities developing regional climate networks and plans, including guidance on how to submit the plan for review, comments, and approval.
(h) The Office of Planning and Research shall publish on its internet website the guidelines developed pursuant to this section in draft form at least 60 days before its adoption of the guidelines for public review and comment, and shall publish on its internet website submitted plans developed pursuant to this section.

SEC. 4.

 Section 71135 is added to the Public Resources Code, to read:

71135.
 (a) As part of developing the guidelines pursuant to Sections 71133 and 71134, the Office of Planning and Research shall make recommendations to relevant policy committees of the Legislature by July 1, 2022, on both of the following:
(1) Developing state support for the work of regional climate networks, as defined in Section 71133, including all of the following:
(A) Exploring ways the state can best partner with regions identified in paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 71133 to provide technical assistance to regional climate networks.
(B) How to offer climate services to assist local and regional adaptation practitioners in identifying, developing, and translating the most appropriate and actionable science for adaptation efforts. Practitioners include, but are not limited to, staff at eligible entities, community-based organizations, and nonprofit organizations, who plan and implement adaptation projects or actions.
(2) Potential sources of financial assistance and options for distributing state funds to support the creation and implementation of regional climate adaptation action plans pursuant to Sections 71133 and 71134.
(b) (1) A report submitted pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.
(2) Pursuant to Section 10231.5 of the Government Code, this section shall become inoperative on July 1, 2025, and, as of January 1, 2026, is repealed.