Proposition 197: Text of Proposed Law

This law proposed by Senate Bill 28 (Statutes of 1995, Chapter 779) is submitted to the people in accordance with the provisions of Article II, Section 10 of the Constitution. This proposed law amends and adds sections to the Fish and Game Code, and amends a section of an initiative; therefore, existing provisions proposed to be deleted are printed in strikeout type and new provisions proposed to be added are printed in italic type to indicate that they are new.

PROPOSED LAW

SECTION 1. The Legislature finds and declares, as follows:

(a) It is appropriate for the Legislature and the Department of Fish and Game to act prudently to address the needs of our changing society. California's complex and ever-changing population requires that the department and the Legislature respond to emergencies and exigencies to safeguard the health and safety of the people of the state and to balance the needs of the people with the necessity to preserve the wildlife and its habitat for the enjoyment of the people.
(b) The wildlife species known as the mountain lion is the only specially protected mammal in the State of California; the mountain lion species is neither threatened nor endangered in the State of California; and the management of mountain lions by the Department of Fish and Game is prohibited by the passage of Proposition 117 by the voters in June, 1990.
(c) The presence of mountain lions pose a threat to people, pets, and livestock, as evidenced by the dramatic increase in the number of life-threatening and life-taking confrontations between mountain lions and people, including at least two confirmed deaths from mountain lion attacks in the past 12 months.
(d) The increase in mountain lion sightings and incidents in residential areas has caused great concern for the safety and well-being of rural and suburban residents, including small children.
(e) Wildlife authorities have determined that sightings and incidents involving mountain lions and people will continue to increase.
(f) The escalating loss of life and cost of injury to people, pets, and livestock caused by mountain lions has resulted, and will continue to result, in increased expenditures by public safety agencies.
(g) Proposition 117 mandates the expenditure of nine hundred million taxpayer dollars at a rate of thirty million dollars per year for thirty years, none of which is used to protect people or manage mountain lions.
(h) In order to maintain a healthy population and to minimize confrontations with humans and livestock, it is necessary to prepare and implement scientifically sound management plans.

SEC. 2. Section 2786 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:
2786. Except as otherwise expressly provided in paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 2787, the money in the Habitat Conservation Fund, which is hereby created, shall be used for the following purposes:
(a) The acquisition of habitat, including native oak woodlands, necessary to protect deer and mountain lions.
(b) The acquisition of habitat to protect rare, endangered, threatened, or fully protected species.
(c) The acquisition of habitat to further implement the Habitat Conservation Program pursuant to Article 2 (commencing with Section 2721) excepting Section 2722 and subdivision (a) of Section 2723, and Sections 2724 and 2729.
(d) The acquisition, enhancement, or restoration of wetlands.
(e) The acquisition, restoration, or enhancement of aquatic habitat for spawning and rearing of anadromous salmonids and trout resources.
(f) The acquisition, restoration, or enhancement of riparian habitat.
(g) The preparation and implementation of a mountain lion management plan pursuant to Section 4800.

SEC. 3. Section 2787 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:
2787. Notwithstanding Section 13340 of the Government Code, the money in the fund is continuously appropriated, without regard to fiscal years, as follows:
(a) To the Department of Parks and Recreation, four million five hundred thousand dollars ($4,500,000) annually for allocation as follows:
(1) One million five hundred thousand dollars ($1,500,000) for projects that are located in the Santa Lucia Mountain Range in Monterey County for expenditure by the Department of Parks and Recreation and for grants to the Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District.
(2) One million dollars ($1,000,000) for acquisitions in, and adjacent to, units of the state park system.
(3) Two million dollars ($2,000,000) for 50 percent matching grants to local agencies for projects meeting the purposes specified in Section 2786 and, additionally, for the acquisition of wildlife corridors and urban trails, nature interpretation programs, and other programs which bring urban residents into park and wildlife areas. The grants made pursuant to this subdivision are subject to the conditions of subdivision (d) of Section 5910, and Sections 5917 and 5919, of the Public Resources Code, as nearly as may be practicable.
(b) To the State Coastal Conservancy, four million dollars ($4,000,000) annually.
(c) To the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy, five million dollars ($5,000,000) annually for the next 10 fiscal years, commencing with the 1990-91 fiscal year. The money shall be used for the purposes specified in Section 2786 for wildlife habitat, and for related open-space projects, within the Santa Monica Mountains Zone, the Rim of the Valley Corridor, and the Santa Clarita Woodlands. Of the total amount appropriated pursuant to this subdivision, not less than a total of ten million dollars ($10,000,000) shall be spent within the Santa Susana Mountains and the Simi Hills, and not less than a total of ten million dollars ($10,000,000) shall be spent within the Santa Clarita Woodlands. These funds shall be expended in accordance with Division 23 (commencing with Section 33000) of the Public Resources Code during the operative period of this section as specified in subdivision (f) and in Section 2797. The Legislature may, by statute, extend the period for expenditure of the funds provided by this paragraph subdivision .
(d) To the California Tahoe Conservancy, five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000) annually.
(e) To the department to pay the costs of preparing and implementing the mountain lion management plan pursuant to Section 4800, a sum not to exceed two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000) for each of the 1996-97, 1997-98, and 1998-99 fiscal years, and a sum not to exceed one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) for each fiscal year thereafter. It is also the intent of the Legislature that an amount not to exceed two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000) be appropriated annually from a source or sources other than the fund for public safety and public information programs related to mountain lions.
(f) To the board, the balance of the fund.

(f) This section (g) The amendments to this section, as approved by the voters at the March 26, 1996, primary election, shall become operative on July 1, 1990, and, as of March 27, 1996. This section shall remain in effect until July 1, 2020, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, which becomes effective on or before July 1, 2020, deletes or extends that date.

SEC. 4. Section 4800 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:
4800. (a) The commission shall regulate the mountain lion (genus Felis) is a specially protected mammal pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 200) of Division 1, and the department shall carry out the regulations of the commission and manage those mammals in the same manner as it carries out other regulations of the commission and manages other mammals that are not rare, endangered, or threatened species under the laws of this state.
(b) Pursuant to subdivision (a), the department shall prepare, submit to the commission for approval, and implement a mountain lion management plan that promotes health and safety protection and protection for livestock, domestic animals, other property, and other wildlife species and that implements Section 1801. The plan shall identify zones based on the department's estimates of mountain lion densities developed from the best information available to the department. The department shall designate the zones that are priority zones where the removal of individual mountain lions to protect public safety, livestock, domestic animals, other property, and other wildlife species has not alleviated threats. In designating priority zones, the department may consider, based on the best information available to the department, where the mountain lion population is depleting other wildlife species or where the mountain lion population may cause any of the following: (1) the extinction of threatened or endangered species; (2) mountain lion depredation of livestock and domestic animals; or (3) a threat to public health and safety. The taking of a mountain lion that is attacking an individual member of a wildlife species other than threatened or endangered species shall not be authorized based on that act alone. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the department shall not manage, regulate, or take mountain lions in a priority zone, as provided in this section or Section 4801, unless there is a plan for that zone and the department makes a finding that managing, regulating, or taking mountain lions is consistent with the plan for that zone and maintains a viable mountain lion population in that zone.
(c) It is unlawful to take, injure, possess, transport, import, or sell any mountain lion or any part or product thereof, except as specifically provided in this chapter or , in Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 2116) of Division 3 , or as prescribed in regulations of the commission . This chapter does not prohibit the sale or possession of any mountain lion or any part or product thereof, when the owner can demonstrate that the mountain lion, or part or product thereof, was in the person's possession on June 6, 1990.
(c) (d) Any violation of this section is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, or a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment. An individual is not guilty of a violation of this section if it is demonstrated that, in taking or injuring a mountain lion, the individual was acting in self-defense or in defense of others.
(d) Section 219 does not apply to this chapter. Neither the commission nor the department shall adopt any regulation that conflicts with or supersedes any of the provisions of this chapter.
(e) In the case of conflict between this chapter and the California Endangered Species Act, Chapter 1.5 (commencing with Section 2050) of Division 3, the California Endangered Species Act shall prevail.

SEC. 5. Section 4801 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:
4801. The department may remove or take any mountain lion , or authorize its designee, including, but not limited to, an appropriate local governmental agency with public safety responsibility to remove or take any mountain lion, that is , an appropriate governmental agency with wildlife management responsibility, or an owner of land, to remove or take, one or more mountain lions that are perceived to be an imminent threat to public health or safety or livestock anywhere in the state except within the state park system. Within the state park system, the department may remove or take, or authorize an appropriate governmental agency with public safety responsibility or an appropriate governmental agency with wildlife management responsibility to remove or take, one or more mountain lions that are perceived to be an imminent threat to public health or safety only with the concurrence of the Department of Parks and Recreation .

SEC. 6. Section 4801.5 is added to the Fish and Game Code, to read:
4801.5. Prior to submittal to, and approval by, the commission of the plan required pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 4800, the department may remove or take any mountain lion, or authorize an appropriate local agency with public safety responsibility to remove or take any mountain lion, that is perceived to be an imminent threat to public health or safety.

SEC. 7. Section 4806 of the Fish and Game Code is amended to read:
4806. Any person who has captured, injured, or killed a mountain lion within a priority zone identified in a mountain lion management plan under Section 4800 or who has been issued a permit pursuant to Section 4803 or 4805 shall report, by telephone within 24 hours, the capturing, injuring, or killing of any mountain lion to an office of the department or, if telephoning is not practicable, in writing within five days after the capturing, injuring, or killing of the mountain lion. At the time of making the report of the capturing, injuring, or killing, the person authorized to take the mountain lion under a mountain lion management plan approved pursuant to Section 4800 shall make the remains of the mountain lion available for inspection to department personnel upon their request pursuant to regulations adopted by the commission and the holder of the permit under Section 4803 or 4805 shall make arrangements to turn over the mountain lion or the entire carcass of the mountain lion which has been recovered to a representative of the department and shall do so in a timely manner.

SEC. 8. Section 8 of the California Wildlife Protection Act of 1990, as added by Proposition 117, an initiative measure approved by the electors at the June 5, 1990, primary election, is amended to read: Sec. 8. Except for amendments of subdivisions (c) and (f) (g) of Section 2787 and subdivision (d) of Section 2796 of the Fish and Game Code to extend the operative effect of those sections and amendments of Section 3950.1 and Chapter 10 (commencing with Section 4800) of Part 3 of Division 4 of the Fish and Game Code , which may be enacted by statute enacted by the Legislature, this act shall be amended only by a statute approved by a vote of four-fifths of the members of both houses of the Legislature. Except for amendments of Section 3950.1 and Chapter 10 (commencing with Section 4800) of Part 3 of Division 4 of the Fish and Game Code, Any any amendment of this act shall be consistent with, and further the purposes of, this act, except the Legislature shall not reallocate the funds allocated by Sections 2787 and 2788 of the Fish and Game Code, change the expenditure requirements of Section 2791 of the Fish and Game Code, or change the transfers of funds required by Sections 2795 and 2796 of the Fish and Game Code.



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