There are four bills pending in the state legislature, however due to COVID-19, it’s uncertain if legislation related to PFAS will move this year. Below are four of the bills we are following closely:
SB 1056 (Portantino)
State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB)
to certify a total PFAS method by 2022. This bill would require the state board, on or before January 1, 2022, to certify a methodology or methodologies for testing drinking water, groundwater, and surface water for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances, as provided, and to accredit qualified laboratories in California to analyze perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances pursuant to the adopted methodology or methodologies.
AB 2560 (Quirk)
is co-sponsored by OCWD and the California Municipal Utilities Association (CMUA) and deals with Notification and Response Level procedures. The bill is a priority for the author, but it is uncertain if it will move this year. The bill outlines that when establishing or revising Notification or Response Levels, the state board shall do all of the following:
(a) Electronically post on its internet website and distribute through email a notice informing interested persons that the state board has initiated the development of a notification or response level.
(b) Electronically post on its internet website and distribute through electronic mail a notice that a draft notification or response level is available. The notice shall include an electronic link to an internet webpage where the draft level can be viewed electronically along with the complete studies that were used to establish the level. Notice and document availability shall occur at least 45 calendar days before finalizing the notification or response level. The state board shall include the draft level as an informational item during a regularly noticed meeting of the state board.
(c) Submit its draft notification or response level for external peer review using the process described in Section 57004.
(d) Take a formal action to finalize and adopt the notification or response level.
SB 996 (Portantino)
is co-sponsored by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and CMUA and deals with the Contaminants of Emerging Concern (CEC) Program within the SWRCB. The bill would require the Board to establish and then maintain an ongoing, dedicated program for CEC to support and conduct assessments on and provide recommendations of issues with water that may pose a risk to the public. In addition, the Board would create a Science Advisory Panel to gather and develop information for the program. The bill would require the program to provide opportunities for public participation through the creation of a Stakeholder Advisory Group. Finally, it would also establish in the State Treasury the CEC Action Fund, which would be administered by the Board.
SB 1044 (Allen)
would prohibit the use of PFAS in firefighting foam by 2022. This bill, commencing January 1, 2022, would require: 1) a written notice to the purchaser of firefighter personal protective equipment containing PFAS and require the seller and the purchaser to retain the notice on file for at least 3 years, 2) would prohibit sale in the state of class B firefighting foam to which PFAS chemicals have been intentionally added, 3) would prohibit a person or public entity from discharging or otherwise using for training purposes class B firefighting foam that contains intentionally added PFAS chemicals, and would provide that a violation of this prohibition is punishable by a specified civil penalty.