SACRAMENTO (CBS / AP) — California’s legislative leaders said they will not help a group of chefs who want to overturn a long-planned ban on foie gras that is scheduled to take effect in July.

Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg on Wednesday said he would not allow the issue to preoccupy the Legislature, which he said has higher priorities. John Vigna, spokesman for Assembly Speaker John Perez, said lawmakers need to focus on the governor’s revised budget plan in the coming weeks.

About 100 California chefs signed a petition Monday asking to keep the duck-liver delicacy legal. But no lawmaker has offered to take up their cause and sponsor a bill to overturn the 2004 law.

Nate Ballard, spokesman for the chefs, acknowledged that getting legislation through before July would be a “heavy lift.”

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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