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SACRAMENTO - AB 1894, a bill for comprehensive regulation of medical marijuana, passed Assembly Public Safety Committee today. The bill by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano includes a regulatory structure for medical cannabis ranging from growing site to retail sales. It also provides for stricter control of medical recommendations.
SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Tom Ammiano’s AB 1894 to regulate medical marijuana will be heard in Assembly Public Safety Committee Tuesday (April 22).
The Ammiano bill is, to date, the most comprehensive regulatory plan introduced for medical marijuana in California. Among its key features, the bill would:
SACRAMENTO – The Assembly Committee on Utilities and Commerce today passed AB 2159 by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano, a bill to augment local choices for securing clean energy at the city, county and individual level.
“With this bill, the Legislature is moving forward to give ratepayers more choices,” Ammiano said. “More and more communities are trying to move to energy sources that are sustainable and don’t make the greenhouse gas situation worse. This bill helps that effort in a way that makes economic and environmental sense.”
SACRAMENTO – The Assembly Utilities and Commerce Committee will meet Monday afternoon (April 21) and will consider AB 2159 by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano, a bill to expand clean energy options throughout California.
The Ammiano bill is geared to give California cities and counties more options for making clean energy available to consumers in their communities. Expanding clean energy production and consumption is critical, given the state’s ambitious goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
SACRAMENTO – Three Ammiano bills had their first committee hearings this week and all three were sent on to the next step. The three pieces of legislation would rein in inhumane prison practices, provide services for homeless youth and preserve the Cal-SAFE program to provide resources to keep pregnant and parenting students in schools. In more detail:
AB 1652 – This bill would set criteria for assigning prisoners to Security Housing Units, or SHUs. Currently, prisoners are often sent there on administrative placements on the basis of accusations of gang participation without due process. Past evidence used for placement included possession of artwork and books, or merely greeting another prisoner. The bill would specify the serious rules violations that would justify placing prisoners in SHUs for specified terms. In addition, it would resume the past practice of allowing some prisoners to earn time credits for good behavior. The bill passed the Assembly Public Safety Committee and heads to the Assembly Appropriations Committee.
SACRAMENTO – The Assembly Public Safety Committee, chaired by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano, will hear Asm. Ammiano’s AB 1652 to control use of solitary confinement. The committee will meet Tuesday (April 8) at 9 a.m. in Room 126 of the State Capitol.
The bill comes out of a series of in-depth hearings held in the wake of prisoner hunger strikes in 2011 and 2013. The last hearing, in February, drew witnesses from as far as London, decrying the excessive use of isolation in Security Housing Units (SHUs) as an inhumane practice.
SACRAMENTO – The Assembly Select Committee on Justice Reinvestment will meet Tuesday, March 18 to hear witnesses speak on the topic of juvenile justice. The bipartisan panel is co-chaired by Assemblymembers Tom Ammiano and Reginald A. Jones-Sawyer. Committee members will hear from educators and youth, as well as analysts who work on topics of juvenile justice.
“We’ve looked at the state prisons and how we can better handle adult justice, but we won’t solve this problem unless we can block the so-called school-to-prison pipeline,” Ammiano said. “As a teacher, I know that we can’t punish youth into success. We have to support them and offer better programs that will give them alternatives – especially in the communities where choices are few.”
Assemblymember Ammiano honors Jennifer Friedenbach (center), along with Asms. Connie Conway and Bonnie Lowenthal and Speaker John A. Pérez.
Jennifer Friedenbach is currently the Executive Director of the Coalition on Homelessness, San Francisco. She has worked for the Coalition for 19 years, as Executive Director, as organizing director, substance abuse and mental health work group coordinator and fundraiser. Friedenbach has a long history of community organizing, and has worked on a range of poverty-related issues including welfare rights, housing, homeless prevention, health care, disability, and human and civil rights. Prior to coming to San Francisco, Friedenbach was Director of the Hunger and Homeless Action Coalition of San Mateo County.
Under Friedenbach’s leadership of the Coalition, San Francisco has expanded access to substance abuse programs for homeless people, established standards of care in the City’s homeless shelters and created a City-funded rental subsidy program for formerly homeless families. Colleagues praise her as a courageous social justice warrior as well as a skilled negotiator, equally comfortable on the front lines of direct action protests or complex interagency budget negotiations.
The Senate and Assembly Public Safety Committees held a joint hearing February 11, 2014 to continue their examination of California’s Security Housing Units and the practice of isolating prisoners for indefinite periods. Officials of CDCR explained recently proposed changes to their policies, but legal and advocacy panelists expressed skepticism of those policies. Assemblymember Ammiano told CDCR officials that bigger changes were needed (as seen in the video above), and later that day introduced legislation to curb the use of isolation cells. A press release on the new bill can be found here.
To see a video recording of the full hearing, go to the California Channel website. Select the video labeled Joint Informational Hearing on CDCRs Proposed New Policies on Inmate Segregation.
For more information on the hearing, read the press release.
Fourth meeting for Assembly Justice Reinvestment panel
SACRAMENTO - The Assembly Select Committee on Justice Reinvestment will hold a hearing Wednesday, February 26, in Sacramento to hear from state agencies with a role in efforts to ease prison crowding conditions or reduce recidivism.
The panel is seeking ways to reduce the California prison population to allow constitutional levels of health care and reduce the budget burden of prisons while maintaining public safety. The committee co-chairs are Assemblymember Tom Ammiano and Assemblymember Reginald Jones-Sawyer.