Assembly Appropriations Committee Passes SB 10 to Stop Child Fentanyl Deaths, other bills by Senator Cortese

The Assembly Appropriations Committee passed a package of bills by Senator Dave Cortese on Friday, including Senate Bill (SB) 10 to prevent opioid overdoses at public schools. SB 10 would require that school safety plans – which are mandated by law – include protocols that respond to pupils suffering from an opioid overdose, such as new campus safety rules concerning fentanyl on campus. The bill would also ensure information is supplied to educators and other school staff to save children who overdose on campus.

“The fentanyl crisis has left a trail of heartbreak across California, on our streets, in our homes, and even inside our schools. SB 10 is named after Melanie Ramos, a vibrant 15-year-old who tragically lost her life to a fentanyl overdose in her high school bathroom. We can’t stand by as more young lives are lost,” said Senator Cortese (D-San Jose). “SB 10 introduces vital opioid prevention strategies into schools. Our goal is to give schools the knowledge and tools to save children who overdose on campus, and to equip students and their families with essential knowledge about the prevalence and danger of fentanyl.”

The bill aligns with the Budget Act of 2023 to ensure every middle and high school in California can easily access and afford the opioid antagonist Naloxone, also known by its brand name Narcan.

SB 10 has received bipartisan legislative support and no opposition. This bill is co-sponsored by the County of Santa Clara, The Santa Clara County Office of Education, the California Association of Student Councils, and the California Consortium of Addiction Programs & Professionals. Support for SB 10 includes Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond, the Santa Clara County School Boards Association, the Los Angeles Office of Education, the California Teachers Association, the California Federation of Teachers, ACLU California, several law enforcement groups, Govern for California, and the California School Nurses Organization.

Here are some additional bills by Senator Cortese that advanced out of the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Friday.

SB 69: (CEQA Notification) Adds transparency to the environmental review process by requiring all public agencies to submit CEQA notices of determination and exemption to the Office of Planning and Research. This ensures that all notices can be found in one place. 

SB 94: (Judicial Review of Old Sentences) Establishes a process for establishing supervised parole for people who have served a life-in-prison-without-parole sentence for at least 25 years for certain crimes. The process would involve three layers of strict evaluation: judges, the Board of Parole Hearings, and the Governor's review. Public safety officials and the original victims would be involved and consulted at each step in the process.

SB 309: (Inmate Religious Freedom) Creates a uniform state policy providing clear guidelines that ensure the civil rights of individuals in custody by protecting religious expression. Studies show that religious practices reduce violence and other negative behaviors in correctional facilities and lowers recidivism.

SB 433: (Due Process Rights for Classified School Staff) Establishes the right of school workers to appeal disciplinary decisions against them to an impartial third-party officer.

SB 553: (Preventing Workplace Violence) Creates violence prevention plans to prevent workplace injury and violence and ensure that employees have access to wellness resources.  

SB 745: (Water Efficient Buildings) Directs the California Building Standards Commission to develop building standards to reduce the potable water demand of new buildings by 25 percent.

Senator Dave Cortese represents Senate District 15, which encompasses San Jose and much of Santa Clara County in the heart of Silicon Valley. Visit Senator Cortese’s website: