Orange County Register: Sen. Bates’ legislation helped lead to agreement: Letters

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Published by the Orange County Register.

Re “New emergency agreement for San Onofre provides millions to local governments” (News, June 4):

I applaud the agreement that Southern California Edison and local governments ratified recently to protect emergency preparedness at the closed San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.

Everyone recognizes that the continued storage of nuclear waste poses an ongoing danger to Southern California. This agreement ensures that neighboring communities will continue to have the resources they need to protect public safety.

The agreement addressed an issue that I had been working on since early 2019. In consultation with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, county of San Diego and cities of Dana Point, San Clemente and San Juan Capistrano, I authored Senate Bill 465 to ensure local governments will continue to receive emergency preparedness funding. Such funding would not have continued without legislation or a voluntary accord between stakeholders.

I helped convene meetings to encourage stakeholders to reach an agreement. If negotiations failed, SB465 would act as a backstop.

The Senate unanimously passed SB465 and the Assembly was on track to pass it. I agreed to hold the bill as stakeholders asked for more time to work out an agreement, which finally occurred.

— Patricia Bates, Laguna Niguel