State Legislature advances vaccine, carpooling bills, other measures
California lawmakers advanced a measure that would require workers in day-care centers to be vaccinated as part of an effort to protect children from preventable diseases such as measles.
Lawmakers also acted on proposals to expand carpooling, ban plastic microbeads and give counties the ability to increase fines for large unpermitted events, a bill sparked by the 2011 wedding of Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries.
FOR THE RECORD: A previous version of this article said that the Kim Kardashian-Kris Humphries wedding was held at the home of Google Executive Chairman Eric E. Schmidt. It was held at a home owned by venture capitalist Frank Caufield.
The vaccine bill would apply to workers in commercial day-care centers and those operated in private homes. It is partly a response to a measles outbreak that involved visitors to Disneyland, according to state Sen. Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia), author of the proposal.
Although the outbreak linked to Disneyland did not result in fatalities, children can die from diseases that are preventable with vaccines, he said.
“We must do everything in our power to protect California’s children who spend time in day care,” Mendoza said Friday.
The Senate approved the measure, SB 792, and sent it to the Assembly.
Sen. John Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa) voted against the bill, calling it overreach.
“It seems that just providing notification to the parents of the children that an employee or volunteer at the day-care center has not had their full vaccinations would be more advisable,” Moorlach said during the floor debate.
The state Assembly voted Friday to approve a bill that would allow car services such as Lyft, Uber and Sidecar to function as car pools. The proposal would give them authority to split fares among multiple passengers with similar pickup locations and destinations.
Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco) said the law governing charter-party carriers, such as taxis, limousines and now ride-sharing companies, dates to 1961 and was intended to protect customers from being forced to share limousine and taxi services with others.
“We have long encouraged public transit and carpooling to reduce traffic and air pollution,” Ting said in support of his measure, AB 1360. “Extending the environmental mindset to ride-sharing requires changing a 50-year-old law.”
Assembly members also passed a bid to ban the sale of personal care products, including some facial scrubs, soaps and toothpaste, that contain plastic microbeads.
Assemblyman Richard Bloom (D-Santa Monica) said his bill would create the strongest law in the country against the use of unnecessary and toxic additives.
AB 888, he added, would help the state “fight pollution in our rivers, lakes and oceans.”
Another measure approved by the Assembly would extend the statute of limitations for filing charges of vehicular manslaughter in hit-and-run collisions. Authorities would have one year after identifying a hit-and-run suspect to press charges; existing law allows charges just three years from the time of the accident.
Assemblyman Mike Gipson (D-Carson) introduced the bill, saying too many people are killed in Los Angeles County by hit-and-run drivers, and noting that the issue is personal for him. Gipson’s 3-year-old son was killed 23 years ago by a hit-and-run driver who was never caught, he told his colleagues.
“It would not bring my son back,” he said of his bill, AB 835, “but we hope that other families will be comforted.”
In response to traffic issues and other problems caused by celebrity Kim Kardashian’s 2011 wedding, the Assembly passed a proposal to increase fines for local ordinance violations from $100 to as much as $5,000.
Author Das Williams, a Democratic Assemblyman from Santa Barbara, said the county could levy only a $100 fine against the Montecito homeowner who hosted the Kardashian-Humphries nuptials, even though it generated a flood of complaints about traffic and other problems.
The event, attended by about 300 guests and dogged by paparazzi, was held at an estate owned by venture capitalist Frank Caufield.
“Taxpayers should not have to pay for extra traffic control and other public safety services for wealthy people who skirt the law,” Williams told his Assembly colleagues before the vote to approve AB 514.
The Assembly bills now go to the Senate for consideration.