California AV Legislation Faces Skepticism in Sacramento

Bill passes committee but lawmakers raise concerns

Apr 24, 2024

On Tuesday, the California Senate Committee on Transportation passed autonomous vehicle legislation (SB 915) allowing local municipalities to ban and tax autonomous vehicle (AV) deployment. At the hearing, Senators Catherine Blakespear, Bill Dodd, and Tom Umberg all raised concerns about the legislation, testifying that the legislation may effectively ban AVs by moving vehicle regulation from the state level to a patchwork of local laws.

Tuesday’s vote followed a committee hearing last week in which members of the Senate Committee on Local Government raised similar concerns about SB 915.

“Some California senators are rightly skeptical about putting AV regulation in cities’ hands,” said Chamber of Progress CEO Adam Kovacevich. “Studies show that AVs are safer than human drivers, who have a bad track record of distracted driving, speeding, and intoxication. We’re glad to see lawmakers raising concerns that SB 915 would ban AVs from California streets, shelving a technology that could reduce traffic fatalities.”

Earlier this month, Chamber of Progress released new research showing that, if California were to allow the full statewide deployment of autonomous vehicles, AVs could prevent thousands of local traffic fatalities and injuries. 

In another recent study on job growth and AVs, Chamber of Progress found that, with the right regulatory framework, California could be a leader in job creation in the AV industry, which is projected to create over 110,000 jobs in the next 15 years.


Chamber of Progress ( is a center-left tech industry policy coalition promoting technology’s progressive future. We work to ensure that all Americans benefit from technological leaps and that the tech industry operates responsibly and fairly.  

Our corporate partners do not have a vote on or veto over our positions. We do not speak for individual partner companies and remain true to our stated principles even when our partners disagree.