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For the second time, an artificial turf bill has been vetoed.  CAI-CLAC strongly urged that Senate Bill 759 be vetoed.  Governor Brown reasoned, as Governor Schwarzenegger did when he vetoed AB 1793 last year, that CIDs should not be micromanaged by the State Legislature.  This argument formed the basis of CAI-CLAC‘s opposition to the bill which actually passed the Legislature with only 19 of 120 legislators siding with us and voting against it.
The Legislature’s passage of the bill was due largely to the fact that it was marketed as a water conservation measure and as such explains the impressive vote in favor of it.  Our local control argument had little effect.  Undaunted, we also brought forward proven data which documented that some of the turf products contain lead and lead chromate, substances that have been banned for decades in California.  Additionally, we cited the Attorney General’s suit against four manufacturers which banned the sale of such products unless they have been reformulated.  (The Attorney General at the time was Jerry Brown.)
The bill was sponsored by the San Diego County Water Authority and supported by the Association of California Water Agencies, and the City of San Diego.
CAI-CLAC commends the Governor for his adherence to the belief that community associations were statutorily designed to be self-regulating and not governed by legislative fiat.
Governor Brown delivered the following veto message:

BILL NUMBER: SB 759 VETOED DATE: 07/15/2011 To the Members of the California State Senate: I am returning Senate Bill 759 without my signature. Under this bill, homeowners associations that govern Common Interest Developments would be forced to approve the installation of Astro Turf. The decision about choosing synthetic turf instead of natural vegetation should be left to individual homeowners associations, not mandated by state law. For this reason, I am returning this bill.

Sincerely, Edmund G. Brown Jr.

On July 13, CAI-CLAC delivered a message to the office of Governor Brown urging a veto on the grounds that “Essentially, SB 759  endorses special interests’ products, and washes people’s health down the drain along with the lead chromate that will wash off the turf into the public water supply when it rains.  (Public water purification systems do not filter out lead.)

To read the Sacramento Bee article by David Siders about the veto go to