SACRAMENTO -- A last-minute glitch involving an attempt to help build a new NBA arena in Sacramento forced California lawmakers to work past midnight on Thursday.
The Senate adjourned at 12:03 a.m., and the Assembly finished its business a minute later.
Earlier in the evening, the Legislature had approved a bill aimed at easing construction of a new arena for the Kings basketball team. That measure also made it harder to stop development in transit zones throughout the state and gives those projects a streamlined environmental review process.
Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) introduced that bill, SB 743.
A couple of hours later, Assemblyman Roger Dickinson (D-Sacramento) presented another bill, AB 852, as a technical fix to Steinberg's earlier bill.
But some lawmakers expressed concern the bill could have larger repercussions for big-box stores, such as Wal-Mart, and said they were frustrated and confused by the eleventh-hour bill. "For us to be betrayed like we have been tonight is something we will never get over," said Assemblyman Dan Logue (R-Linda).
The bill won only 25 aye votes on its first try, and 34 votes in opposition. As midnight approached, it was stalled on its second try on a 26-34 vote.
The Assembly adjourned without approving the bill.