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Governor vetoes bills

July 22, 2010|By Bill Kisliuk,

The governor said no to two La Cañada Flintridge lawmakers last week.

While Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed dozens of bills July 16, two of his four vetoes originated with state Sen. Carol Liu and Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, both Democrats.

Liu's measure, Senate Bill 878, would have increased the notification homeowners and renters receive in Los Angeles County when a property is headed toward foreclosure.


Years ago, the county began notifying occupants and homeowners when a new deed was recorded on a property. Part of the idea was to help weed out real estate scams targeting older residents.

With the rise of foreclosures, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors asked Liu to expand the law to provide special notice when a home was on the verge of being repossessed, said her spokesman, Robert Oakes.

The governor vetoed the bill Thursday, saying state law already requires property owners to receive notice when a home slips into default.

"Moreover," Schwarenegger wrote in his veto message, "notices of sale, in addition to being mailed to the property owner, must also be posted on the property, providing notice to both the occupant and owner of a pending foreclosure action."

"We're deeply disappointed," Oakes said. "The governor didn't understand this was a consumer protection matter."

Oakes referred to "horror stories" such as when renters faithfully pay their monthly installments only to find out the owner is not paying the mortgage, or that the bank is about to take over the house. He said the measure had the support of county supervisors, Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, Los Angeles Dist. Atty. Steve Cooley and others.

Oakes said no one testified against the measure.

Liu may introduce the legislation next session, when a new governor is in office. But Oakes said she would take her cue on that from the Board of Supervisors.

Portantino's Assembly Bill 1992 would have specified that the California Horse Racing Board has the authority to regulate the composition of both synthetic and dirt ovals at tracks, including Arcadia's Santa Anita Park. The park is within Portantino's 44th Assembly District.

Synthetic tracks are controversial. More expensive for track owners, they have proven to be more safe for racehorses.

Portantino's chief of staff, Trent Hager, said the assemblyman wanted to ensure the board had explicit authority over the composition of all tracks, but the governor said the legislation was unnecessary.

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