Legicrawler News : : July 2008
Organization is Not Seen as an "Energy Stakeholder"
Energy-related legislation is sweeping the country in response to the rapid rise of energy costs.
You need to pay attention, even if you don't normally follow energy issues.
Numerous bills cover such alternative energy issues as biofuels, solar, and wind, and alternative transportation such as plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles.
Even apart from biofuels, energy and environmental legislation can impact issues like food production and distribution.
For example, a bill in the California Assembly, AB 904, expands the scope of the California Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989 as it relates to takeout food packaging.
The bill requires takeout food to have either compostable or recyclable packaging within four years. Introduced early last year, the bill is now in the Senate, having passed the Assembly at the end of January.
Food distribution planning in California must also consider the increasing scope of anti-idling provisions covering diesel engines. Are trucking fleets equipped with the latest in anti-idling technologies? What about sleeper cabs? Can drivers heat them without idling their engines?
California's Healthy Heart and Lung Act, passed late last year, steps up enforcement and penalties for the Golden State's anti-idling rules.
Sometimes anti-idling legislation is simply in the form of a tax credit for the use of idle reduction technology on certain trucks (see, for example, MS SB 811 and NJ SB 1252.)
Or, the focus may be on authorizing municipalities to prohibit vehicles from idling (e.g. NY AB 1931).
A common focus is school bus idling and its impact on the health of schoolchildren. New York and Vermont have passed bills addressing the issue.
As energy and environmental legislation widens its reach, you should consider broadening the scope of your legislative tracking as well.
Bills of major consequence to your organization may not fit into neat searching or tracking categories.
Each Legicrawler user has a comprehensive "issues profile" for exhaustive and nuanced coverage of legislative activity.
Canned and artificial categories won't do.
Legislative activity is constantly evolving to meet new public policy concerns.
Your legislative coverage needs to be up to date, as well.
Chicago July 29:
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