SACRAMENTO, Calif., May 3, 1913 (UP) - Following the passage by the state senate of the amended Webb antialien land owning bill at 12:45 a.m. and the conceded probable passage by the assembly, chambers of commerce and business interests throughout California are already preparing to invoke the referendum in the hope of delaying the operation of the law until the general election of 1914.
The upper house put the measure through after ten hours debate by vote of 36 to 2. All except one democrat ignored the advice of Secretary Bryan and supported the measure after it had been amended to permit "ineligible aliens" to lease land for periods of three years, but not to renew such leases.
It is admitted the lower house will push the measure through rapidly, and Gov. Johnson will immediately sign it.
The Webb bill forbids aliens not eligible to citizenship from owning any land for agricultural or gardening purposes, though permitting them to own land for residential or commercial purposes. Citizens owning farming land may lease it to an alien for not more than three years, at the end of which period it may be re-leased to another alien, who has not previously held a lease.
The bill does not affect the ownership of land already held by aliens, but it carries a provision that no ineligible alien may inherit California land.