Bill Text: CA SB1273 | 2019-2020 | Regular Session | Amended


Bill Title: Commute benefit policies: Sacramento Regional Transit District: Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 1-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2020-03-25 - From committee with author's amendments. Read second time and amended. Re-referred to Com. on TRANS. [SB1273 Detail]

Download: California-2019-SB1273-Amended.html

Amended  IN  Senate  March 25, 2020

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill
No. 1273


Introduced by Senator Pan

February 21, 2020


An act to add Section 65080.8 to the Government Code, relating to transportation.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 1273, as amended, Pan. Commute benefit policies: Sacramento Regional Transit District: Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District.
Existing law declares that the fostering, continuance, and development of public transportation systems are a matter of statewide concern. Existing law authorizes the formation of the Sacramento Regional Transit District with various powers and duties with respect to transportation planning, programming, construction, and operations. Existing law creates the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District, which has primary responsibility for the development, implementation, monitoring, and enforcement of air pollution control strategies, clean fuels programs, and motor vehicle use reduction measures for the County of Sacramento.
This bill would authorize the district districts, in consultation with the Sacramento Area Council of Governments, to jointly adopt, and revise as necessary, necessary to meet the region’s changing transportation needs, a commute benefit ordinance that that, at minimum, requires covered employers, as defined, operating within the district’s area of the County of Sacramento that is common to the service areas of the districts to offer certain employees commute benefits, as specified, except that the bill would prohibit the ordinance from affecting employers covered by certain Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District rules or regulations. The bill would require the ordinance to specify certain matters, including consequences for noncompliance. The bill would, if the district adopts districts adopt a commute benefit ordinance, require the district, districts, before an unspecified date, to submit a report to the transportation policy committees of each house of the Legislature and the Senate Committee on Environmental Quality that includes specified elements.
This bill would make legislative findings and declarations as to the necessity of a special statute for the Sacramento Regional Transit District. County of Sacramento.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 65080.8 is added to the Government Code, to read:

65080.8.
 (a) It is the intent of the Legislature to encourage public transit agencies to work with local employers to adopt policies that encourage commuting by public transit transit, sustainable transportation, and means other than driving alone. To encourage this, the Legislature hereby establishes a program in that regard in the County of Sacramento.
(b) Notwithstanding Section 40717.9 of the Health and Safety Code, the Sacramento Regional Transit District formed pursuant to the Sacramento Regional Transit District Act (Part 14 (commencing with Section 102000) of Division 10 of the Public Utilities Code) and the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District created pursuant to Chapter 11 (commencing with Section 40950) of Part 3 of Division 26 of the Health and Safety Code, in consultation with the Sacramento Area Council of Governments, may jointly adopt, and revise as necessary, necessary to meet the region’s changing transportation needs, a commute benefit ordinance that that, at minimum, requires covered employers operating within the district’s area of the County of Sacramento that is common to the service areas of the Sacramento Regional Transit District and the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District to offer all covered employees a pretax option program, consistent with Section 132(f) of the Internal Revenue Code, allowing covered employees to elect to exclude from taxable wages employee commuting costs incurred for transit passes passes, bicycle commuting, or vanpool charges, up to the maximum amount allowed by federal tax law.
(c) This section shall not prevent a covered employer from offering a more generous commuter benefit program that is otherwise consistent with the requirements of the applicable commute benefit ordinance. This section does not require employees to change their behavior.
(d) An employer offering, or proposing to offer, an alternative commuter benefit program on the employer’s own initiative, or an employer otherwise required to offer an alternative commuter benefit program as a condition of a lease, original building permit, or other similar requirement, may seek approval of the alternative from the district districts if the alternative is inconsistent with the program described in subdivision (b). The district districts may approve an alternative if it determines they determine that the alternative provides at least the same benefit in terms of reducing single-occupant vehicle trips as the program described in subdivision (b). An employer that offers an approved alternative to covered employees in a manner otherwise consistent with this section is not required to offer the program described in subdivision (b).
(e) The commute benefit ordinance shall provide covered employers with at least six months to comply after the ordinance is adopted.
(f) An employer that participates in, or is represented by, a transportation management association, or a transportation management organization, that provides the employer’s covered employees with the program described in subdivision (b) or an alternative commuter benefit program approved pursuant to subdivision (d), shall be deemed in compliance with the commute benefit ordinance and the transportation management association, or transportation management organization, may act on behalf of those employers in that regard. The district districts shall communicate directly with the transportation management association or transportation management organization, rather than the participating employers, to determine compliance with the ordinance.
(g) A commute benefit ordinance adopted pursuant to this section shall specify all of the following:
(1) How the district districts will inform covered employers about the ordinance.
(2) How compliance with the ordinance will be demonstrated.
(3) The procedures for proposing, and the criteria that will be used to evaluate, an alternative commuter benefit program pursuant to subdivision (d).
(4) Any consequences for noncompliance.
(h) This section does not limit or restrict the statutory or regulatory authority of the district. districts.
(i) The district districts shall not use federal planning funds in the implementation of the commute benefit ordinance.
(j) This section does not authorize the district districts to adopt a commute benefit ordinance that would affect an employer covered by a Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District rule or regulation intended to reduce on-road mobile source emissions generated from employee commuting or to provide options for attaining equivalent emissions reductions.
(k) (1) If the district adopts districts adopt a commute benefit ordinance pursuant to this section, the district, districts, before January 1, ______, shall submit a report to the transportation policy committees of each house of the Legislature and the Senate Committee on Environmental Quality that includes, but is not limited to, all of the following elements:
(A) A description of the program, including how the district districts informed covered employers and employees of the ordinance, and of any compliance issues.
(B) The number of employers complying with the ordinance that did not previously offer a commute benefit consistent with those required by the ordinance.
(C) The number of employees who stopped driving alone to work to instead take transit or a vanpool because of the commute benefit ordinance.
(D) The number of single-occupant vehicle trips reduced per month, week, or day because of the commute benefit ordinance.
(E) The vehicle miles traveled and greenhouse gas emissions reductions associated with implementation of the commute benefit ordinance.
(F) The greenhouse gas emissions reductions associated with implementation of the commute benefit ordinance as a percentage of the region’s greenhouse gas emissions target established by the State Air Resources Board.
(2) (A) The requirement for submitting a report imposed under this subdivision is inoperative on January 1, ______, pursuant to Section 10231.5.
(B) A report to be submitted pursuant to this subdivision shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795.
(l) For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:
(1) “District” “Districts” means the Sacramento Regional Transit District and the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District.
(2) “Covered employee” means an employee who performed at least an average of 20 hours of work per week within the previous calendar month within the area where the ordinance adopted pursuant to this section operates.
(3) “Covered employer” means any employer for which an average of 50 or more employees perform work for compensation at a worksite within the area where the ordinance adopted pursuant to this section operates. In determining the number of employees performing work for an employer during a given week, only employees performing work on a full-time basis shall be counted.

SEC. 2.

 The Legislature finds and declares that a special statute is necessary and that a general statute cannot be made applicable within the meaning of Section 16 of Article IV of the California Constitution because of the unique transportation issues confronted by the Sacramento Regional Transit District. in the County of Sacramento.
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