Jerry Brown vetoes reimbursement bill for San Bernardino responders

September 26, 2016
Gov. Jerry Brown

Gov. Jerry Brown

California Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a bill Sunday that would have required the state to fully reimburse local agencies that responded to the December terrorist attack in San Bernardino. The bill had unanimously passed both the State Assembly and Senate.

After a state-declared emergency occurs, the federal government provides some reimbursement for the costs of responding to the disaster. Under California rules, the state then typically pays for 75 percent of the remaining costs, while local agencies are responsible for covering the other 25 percent.

In the case of the San Bernardino attack, the total bill for the non-federal share of the emergency response costs is $6.4 million. SB 1385, which was authored by Sen. Connie Leyva (D-Chino), would have required the state to cover the local agencies’ $1.6 million share of the bill, in addition to the state’s $4.8 million expenses.

Over the past few decades, the state has provided full reimbursement for the costs of responding to numerous emergencies, including earthquakes, fire, floods, mudslides and landslides. Locally, agencies that responded to the 2003 San Simeon earthquake received full reimbursement.

However, in vetoing the San Bernardino bill, Brown issued a statement saying he did not want to set a precedent.

“I recognize the unique circumstances of this horrific terrorist attack. However, this bill sets the expectation that the state will assume all the financial responsibility for future emergency costs. The general fund cannot afford this precedent,” Brown said in his statement.

The governor did say the California Office of Emergency Services would continue working with local agencies in San Bernardino to ensure the state reimburses them for all costs eligible under California law.

SB 1385 passed the Assembly on an 80-0 vote, and the State Senate voted 39-0 in favor of the bill. The legislation notes that the city of San Bernardino is still grappling with its recent bankruptcy, and San Bernardino County has a 20 percent poverty index.



  1. Citizen says:

    As Governor, Jerry Brown allows Middle Eastern refugees to be placed anywhere in California without notification to the state or local officials, and now he says that local law enforcement has to bear part of the costs of terrorism. Why should any costs be the problem of San Bernadino County, a county that is near bankruptcy?

    Jerry Brown, demand that the feds tell the states where refugees are being placed in our state. It’s our right to know and keeps new refugees away from terrorist groups now under investigation.

    (11) 11 Total Votes - 11 up - 0 down
  2. sdman67 says:

    There probably wouldn’t have even had to be a bill on this had it been San Francisco that was attacked.

    (9) 9 Total Votes - 9 up - 0 down
  3. NorthCountyGuy says:

    Jerry Brown is an enabler for criminals and islamic terrorists because Jerry Brown himself is a Jesuit terrorist.

    (4) 16 Total Votes - 10 up - 6 down
  4. Jorge Estrada says:

    On this issue, I agree with Brown. California can not pay for every whimsical nut that opens the gates for every law enforcement agency to have a blank check to spend. The reality is that California needs to exercise speedy trials and dispose of the social pestilence.

    (20) 32 Total Votes - 26 up - 6 down
    • Black_Copter_Pilot says:

      Pestilence …..good word

      (16) 18 Total Votes - 17 up - 1 down
    • L.A.RamsFan says:

      Would that “disposal” process start before or after trial? You want speedier trials? I can think of one way that will definitely accomplish that one, with another that would definately help but probably not as successful:

      1). Lets completely dismantle our current judicial system and start all over again! Lets do away with the “Good Ol’ Boy Club” that currently dominates both sides of the bench. Lets make it so two people can walk into a court room without the necessity of having $250 an hour and up “translators” that do nothing but muddy the waters with their own “language(s)”. You present your evidence they produce theirs, you say what you have to say, they say what they have to say and then turn it over to the twelve or back to the bench, your choice.

      2). Appoint more judges, build bigger court houses, get more prosecutors on the job, increase jail sizes and of course build more and more prisons… Wait a minute! Didn’t we already try that approach on MANY, MANY different occassions? Hasn’t worked to date, so if history repeats itself, and it does, it won’t in the future.

      One thing I need to know:

      What would your “disposal pocess” encompass? Using the traditional definition of throwing something away or getting rid of it of course, how would you propose to do that?

      (-10) 14 Total Votes - 2 up - 12 down
    • r0y says:

      I would agree with that sentiment: California cannot pay for every whimsical nut… however, it is often California’s irresponsibility that often creates an appealing climate for many of the nuts here. We attract them likes flies to shit. At some point, accountability needs to be shared among our poorly governed communities and state.

      (10) 10 Total Votes - 10 up - 0 down

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