SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Lawmakers return to Sacramento Tuesday for the final week of California’s legislative session.
State lawmakers have until Friday to pass or kill hundreds of proposals, including a last-minute request from Gov. Gavin Newsom.
With four days to go in the legislative session, Newsom requested late Friday to use $16.7 million in state funds to help Afghan refugee arrivals in California.
The proposal is backed by Democratic legislative leaders in the Senate and has bipartisan support.
Assemblyman Devon Mathis, R-Visalia, served in the military for ten years completing two tours in the Middle East. He supports Newsom’s proposal and a House resolution urging the Biden administration to get Americans in Afghanistan home, along with Afghan partners and their dependents.
“It’s great that he wants to do this,” Mathis said. “The Biden administration guys need to admit they screwed the pooch on this one and did a horrible job on this pull-out, and we have to put the pieces together for them to have somewhere to go. If a little bit of this helps, absolutely. As far as California, I pray that we’re able to help. And if we can’t help them here, we need to be a part of a collaboration to get them settled on U.S. soil.”
A bill that would strip badges from bad law enforcement officers is another proposal facing Friday’s deadline. California is just one of four states that does not have a system to decertify police officers.
The Senate is set to take the final vote after the bill passed the Assembly Friday.
“This is not an anti-police bill, this is an accountability bill. Without any accountability, we lose integrity of the badge and the bond with the community is broken,” explained Assemblywoman Akilah Weber, D-San Diego.
Republicans have concerns with the potential for bias in the bill which establishes a nine-member disciplinary board that can have only two law enforcement representatives and seven others with personal backgrounds with police accountability.
Republicans also have concerns with the bill’s broad definition of misconduct.
“We do need a decertification process. But we also need it to be fair,” said Assemblyman Tom Lackey, R-Palmdale.
There are some legislative priorities that likely won’t happen this week including two postponed oversight hearings into the Newsom administration for its handling of the Employment Development Department and wildfire prevention.