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The Latest: Bill would OK San Francisco safe injection sites

August 28, 2018

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on action in the California Legislature (all times local):

7 p.m.

San Francisco may be allowed to pilot a program to let people inject heroin and other drugs under medical supervision in an effort to curb overdose deaths.

The California Assembly voted 41-24 Monday to send the governor a bill allowing San Francisco to operate so-called safe injection sites.

The site would provide sterile needles and people would be able to use illegal drugs there without fear of arrest.

The bill is by Stockton Assemblywoman Susan Talamantes Eggman, who says it would help connect addicts to treatment.

But an opponent, Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez of Lake Elsinore, says she worries it will encourage prolonged drug use.

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4:15 p.m.

A bill that’s cleared the state Assembly aims to ensure mail-in ballots count even when voters use sloppy signatures.

It would require counties to check with voters before discarding a ballot if the signature doesn’t match the one on the voter’s registration file.

Democratic Assemblyman Kevin Mullin says about 25,000 mail-in ballots weren’t counted in the 2016 election because signatures didn’t match. Californians are increasingly voting by mail.

Republican Assemblyman Steven Choi says imposing a new mandate on counties might encourage them to accept more ballots with mismatched signatures rather than go through the hassle of verifying them. He says that could hurt the integrity of elections.

The bill needs a final Senate vote before heading to Gov. Jerry Brown.

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4 p.m.

Some California parents would be allowed to give their children medical marijuana on school campuses under a bill that’s cleared the state Assembly.

California allows minors to use medical marijuana with parental permission but prohibits marijuana on school campuses. Democratic Sen. Jerry Hill says it’s disruptive to students’ learning if their parents must take them off campus to administer medicine.

Hill says the legislation was inspired by a student in his South San Francisco district who takes medical marijuana to stop constant seizures.

The marijuana would have to be in non-smoking form. School districts must opt-in to the law; it is not a state mandate.

Hill’s office says seven other states allow medical marijuana on school campuses.

The bill now goes to Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown.

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