California Code of Regulations History Research

Finding Past Versions of a Regulation

Sometimes, there is a need to research a prior version of a section of the California Code of Regulations (CCR) or to track its history. Researching a prior version of a CCR section is done through the use of the California Code of Regulations Supplement (previously known as the California Regulatory Code Supplement, but commonly referred to as the “Register” or “CCR Supplement”).

THE CALIFORNIA CODE OF REGULATIONS, THE CALIFORNIA CODE OF REGULATIONS SUPPLEMENT, AND THE CALIFORNIA REGULATORY NOTICE REGISTER

The Office of Administrative Law (OAL) publishes three primary regulatory publications for California: (1) the California Code of Regulations (CCR); (2) the California Code of Regulations Supplement (CCR Supplement); and (3) the California Regulatory Notice Register (Notice Register).

The CCR contains regulations duly adopted pursuant to the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) by California state agencies. Generally speaking, after OAL approves a proposed regulation adopted by a state agency, it then files the regulation with the Secretary of State.  The CCR is updated weekly through the publication of the CCR Supplement (Register). The CCR Supplement (Register) is commonly and historically referred to as the “Register.”

The CCR Supplement (Register) vs. the Notice Register

The CCR Supplement (Register) and the Notice Register should not be confused.

The CCR Supplement (Register) is the weekly hard copy update of the CCR.

The Notice Register contains notices of proposed adoption, amendment, or repeal of CCR sections proposed by California state agencies. Publication of a notice in the Notice Register begins the rulemaking process for a state agency.

The Notice Register is published in hard copy and online. The CCR Supplement (Register) is published in hard copy format to update the hard copy print version of the CCR. The online CCR is updated electronically.

HOW DO I FIND A PAST VERSION OF A SECTION OF THE CCR?

The key to researching the history of a CCR section is the History Notes, which are almost always located at the end of a CCR section. History Notes give the chronology of the adoption of and changes to a section and include such information as the filing date of the CCR section with the Secretary of State, when the section became effective (or operative), and the year and volume number (week) in which the text was published in the CCR Supplement (Register).

The number of History Notes for a CCR section varies. Some may have several History Notes, while other CCR sections may have only one History Note. For CCR sections with no History Note, see “WHAT IF THERE IS NO HISTORY NOTE AT THE END OF A CCR SECTION?” below.

Each week’s published CCR Supplement (Register) contains the text of adoptions, amendments, and repeals made to the CCR by state agencies, as filed with the Secretary of State for that particular week. The CCR Supplement (Register) is organized by year and number. There is a published update to the CCR (i.e., CCR Supplement) for every week of the year, so the “number” corresponds to the week it was published. So, for each year, there are 52 numbers —e.g., Register 2008, No. 1 through Register 2008, No. 52.

Locating a CCR section in a particular weekly CCR Supplement (Register) volume gives you a “snapshot” of the text of that CCR section as approved at that point in time.

WHERE CAN I FIND THE CCR SUPPLEMENT (REGISTER)?

The California State Law Library houses a collection of past CCR Supplements (Registers) going back to 1945 in a variety of media formats (microfiche, hard copy). Library staff can assist with research issues. Please contact the State Law Library at:

Stanley Mosk Library and Courts Building
Witkin State Law Library of California

914 Capitol Mall, 3rd Floor
Sacramento, California 95814
(916) 654-0185
FAX (916) 654-2039
Email: csllaw@library.ca.gov

OAL also keeps a set of CCR Supplements (Registers) but does not have them in the variety of media formats as does the State Library and is not able to offer library or research services to the public.

WHAT IF THERE IS NO HISTORY NOTE AT THE END OF A CCR SECTION?

In the historical past, when an entire regulatory unit (e.g., article, chapter, division, etc.) was adopted, the publishing practice was to write a single History Note which was usually located under the first section of that particular unit. Editorial practices and technology have evolved, and now History Notes are written for every CCR section, regardless of whether the CCR section is being adopted, amended, or repealed or whether or not it is a part of a unit.

If there is no History Note at the end of a CCR section, its history can still be found by looking in the History Notes of the first section in the previous level in the hierarchy—either an article, chapter, or division (or in rare cases, a subarticle, subchapter, or subdivision) over that CCR section. The History Note of the first section will most likely contain the history of when that entire unit (e.g., article, chapter, division) was adopted.

WHERE ARE APPROVED REGULATIONS KEPT?

When OAL approves a CCR regulation, it files the original text with the Secretary of State. The Secretary of State endorses the text and keeps the original copy. Please contact the Secretary of State Archives at:

California State Archives
1020 “O” Street
Sacramento, CA  95814
Reference Desk: (916) 653-2246
General Information: (916) 653-7715
FAX: (916) 653-7363
E-Mail: ArchivesWeb@sos.ca.gov

HOW DO I FIND THE INTENT OR JUSTIFICATION OF A REGULATION SECTION OF THE CCR?

The state agency that promulgated the regulation is required to justify the necessity and explain the rationale for each proposal in a document known as the “Initial Statement of Reasons” which is a part of the complete rulemaking record. Agencies are required to keep and store their rulemaking records pursuant to Government Code section 11347.3(e) and (f). Agencies may choose to transmit their rulemaking records to the State Archives.

After OAL completes its review, it returns the rulemaking record to the state agency for its safekeeping and storage. OAL does not retain any state agency rulemaking records other than its own.