By KATHLEEN RONAYNE
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s oil regulator wants to ban new oil and gas drilling within 3,200 feet of schools, homes and hospitals to protect public health. The draft rule released Thursday would be the nation’s largest buffer zone between drilling and community sites if adopted. Environmental groups and Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration say it’s necessary to protect public health and safety. The oil industry says it will diminish reliable energy and raise prices. The proposal is part of Newsom’s effort to end oil and gas extraction in the state by 2045. Existing wells in those zones would be subject to stricter regulations.