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State Legislative Update

Governor Brown Signs Bills 

to Improve Food Security in California

 

Governor Brown has signed a number of bills that will help improve access to the CalFresh program and reduce hunger in California. Anti-hunger advocates have much to celebrate this year, as legislation signed by the Governor will finally end fingerprint imaging in the CalFresh program -- a change many of you have championed for almost a decade. 

 

Governor Brown also signed AB 152, the bill CAFB sponsored to create a tax credit for crop donations and the framework for a state emergency food assistance program. A summary of hunger-related bills signed or vetoed by Governor Brown is listed below.

 

Unfortunately, one key bill many of us worked very hard to pass this year never even made it to the Governor's desk. AB 828, a bill to reinstate CalFresh eligibility for people with certain drug-related felony convictions, was held in the Senate Appropriations Committee. This means we still have work to do to keep the pressure on to pass this very important legislation next year. 

 

Bills Signed by Governor Brown

 

AB 6 (Fuentes) - ends fingerprint imaging in CalFresh; moves CalFresh and CalWORKs from quarterly to simplified semi-annual reporting; creates "heat & eat" initiative to streamline paperwork and increase benefits for a significant number of households.

 

AB 69 (Beall) - allows counties to utilize Social Security information to facilitate and streamline senior enrollment in CalFresh.

 

AB 152 (Fuentes) - creates a tax credit for fresh fruits and vegetables donated by California growers to California food banks; creates the framework for a state emergency food assistance program.

 

AB 402 (Skinner) - authorizes school districts to work with county social services agencies to develop a fast track from a free or reduced-price school meal program application to a CalFresh program application.

 

AB 581 (Pérez) - creates the California Healthy Food Financing Initiative to expand access to healthy foods in underserved communities. 

 

AB 959 (Jones) - aligns CalWORKs reporting requirements with CalFresh and Medi-Cal by allowing aid to be reinstated if a report is submitted within 30 days of the due date.

 

SB 43 (Liu) removes mandatory employment and training requirements in the CalFresh program when the state or sub-region is federally determined to have a work surplus (high unemployment). 

 

Bills Vetoed by Governor Brown

 

AB 1182 (Hernández) - would have excluded the value of a vehicle when determining eligibility for the CalWORKs program, a procedure already implemented in the CalFresh program.  

 

 

 

Contact Tim Shadix with any questions at tim@cafoodbanks.org or 510-350-9917.