Hundreds of bills live or die this week in the California legislature






SACRAMENTO >> Hundreds of California bills either survived or perished in a two-day span this week as Assembly and Senate committees made rapid-fire decisions on legislation that has accumulated in the “suspense file” this session.

Bills to tinker with daylight saving time, overhaul the bail system and extend California’s landmark cap-and-trade program for regulating greenhouse gases made the cut. Proposals to stop taxing tampons and to make Election Day a state holiday, however, were blocked.

“This one goes out to all my friends who lost bills on #SuspenseFile,” tweeted Phillip Ung, director of legislation for the state Fair Political Practices Commission, on Friday afternoon. “Just know, that no bill ever truly dies.”

Among the other survivors: identical Senate and Assembly versions of a closely watched proposal to dismantle the current bail-bonds system, by Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, and Assemblyman Rob Bonta, D-Oakland. Despite robocalls this week from Dog the Bounty Hunter, who is lobbying on behalf of bail agents fighting the legislation, each bill moves to the floor of its respective house next week, a step cheered by civil rights advocates Friday.

“Money bail has essentially created a two-tiered system of justice in California: one for the wealthy and one for everyone else,” said John Bauters, of the Oakland-based group Californians for Safety and Justice. “By relying on wealth rather than risk to public safety to determine…

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