(a) The Environmental Education Account is hereby established within the State Treasury. Moneys in the account may, upon appropriation by the Legislature, be expended by the department for the purposes of this part. The Director of Resources Recycling and Recovery shall administer this part, including, but not limited to, the account.
(b) Notwithstanding any other law to the contrary, the department may accept and receive federal, state, and local funds and contributions of funds from a public or private organization or individual. The account may also receive proceeds from a judgment, settlement, fine, penalty, or other mechanism, in state or federal court, when the funds are contributed or the judgment specifies that the proceeds are to be used for the purposes of this part. The account may receive those funds, contributions, or proceeds from judgments, that are specifically designated for use for environmental education purposes. Private contributors shall not have the authority to further influence or direct the use of their contributions.
(c) Notwithstanding any other law, a state agency that requires the development of, or encourages the promotion of, environmental education for elementary and secondary school pupils, may contribute to the account.
(d) The department shall immediately deposit any funds contributed pursuant to subdivision (b) into the account.
(e) The Legislature finds and declares that the maintenance of the account is of the utmost importance to the state and that it is essential that any moneys in the account be used solely for the purposes authorized in this section and not be used, loaned, or transferred for any other purposes. Further, state agencies that promote environmental education for elementary and secondary school pupils will benefit from the environmental curriculum adopted pursuant to this part and should provide equitable and balanced support for the program.
(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 356, Sec. 41.)