This spring legislative update is brought to you by the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights.
2020 Selected Criminal Justice Reform Legislation
AB 2200 California Racial Justice Act (Kalra): Gives people the ability to challenge racial discrimination against them at their trial or sentencing.
AB 3160 Programming Incentives and Credit Earning (Stone): Reduces barriers to programming in prison and creates a method of receiving credits for work assignments and good conduct credits based on benchmarks.
SB 144 Families Over Fees Act (Mitchell): Eliminates many of the administrative fees imposed by the criminal legal system and reduces the suffering caused by court debt.
SB 555 Jail Fair Access and Connection to Support (FACTS) (Mitchell): Requires that items in a county jail canteen are sold at the cost paid to vendors; prohibits commissions for communication contracts in juvenile facilities and county jails; requires communication contracts go to lowest cost provider.
2020 Ballot Measures
California Criminal Sentencing, Parole, and DNA Collection Initiative: Would roll back advancements gained in Prop 47, 57, and AB 109 by expanding the number of crimes that can be charged as felonies; limit early parole; and create two additional types of crimes – serial crime and organized retail crime. It also would require DNA collection for certain misdemeanors.
- A "yes" vote adds crimes to the list of violent felonies for which early parole is restricted; increases the penalty for certain types of theft, fraud crimes and misdemeanors; and requires DNA collection for certain misdemeanors.
- A “no” vote opposes the initiative to create new felonies, limit parole, and increase penalties.
California Replace Cash Bail with Risk Assessments Referendum: Last year the Legislature passed SB 10 to eliminate money bail in pretrial detention. In response, the bail bonds industry has resourced a referendum asking voters to approve the move.
- A "yes" vote approves SB 10 and replaces cash bail with risk assessments and expanded judicial discretion to determine whether someone should be held in jail while they wait for their trial.
- A “no” vote repeals SB 10, and keeps cash bail in place for pretrial detention.
California Tax on Commercial and Industrial Properties for Education and Local Government Funding Initiative:– Would change the way commercial and industrial properties are taxed, so that they’re taxed on their market value instead of their purchase price. The new revenue – estimated between $6-10 billion – would be divided so that 40% would fund school districts and community colleges, and 60% would go to local governments.
- A "yes" vote supports taxing commercial and industrial properties based on their market value, instead of their purchase price (excluding commercial agriculture properties and small businesses), and supports allocating revenue from the tax change to local governments and school districts.
- A “no” vote continues taxing these properties below their market rate.
California Voting Rights Restoration for Persons on Parole Amendment: If ACA 6 (McCarty) is passed, this is how it will appear on the ballot.
- A “yes” vote approves ACA 6, provides people on parole the right to vote in California.
- A “no” vote rejects ACA 6.