Leave it to California to be ahead of the national curve in child safety car seat rules - pending necessary signatures. California children would be required to ride in booster seats for two additional years - until age 8 - under legislation approved Monday by the Assembly.
The measure by San Francisco Democrat Gene Mullin was adopted largely along party lines, 44-25, most Republicans were opposed.
Assembly Bill 881 would provide an exception for very tall youngsters, 4-foot-9 or taller, who could use a seat belt rather than a booster seat. The legislation, if signed into law, would become effective in January 2009.
Current state law requires children to ride in a car seat until they are 4, then a booster seat until they are 6 years old or weigh more than 60 pounds. AB 881 also would require children to ride in the back seat of vehicles until they are 8, two years later than current law.
The booster seat bill now goes to the Senate.