BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 500
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   May 1, 2013

                        ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS
                                  Mike Gatto, Chair

                AB 500 (Ammiano) - As Introduced:  February 20, 2013 

          Policy Committee:                              Public  
          SafetyVote:  5-2

          Urgency:     No                   State Mandated Local Program:  
          Yes    Reimbursable:              No

           SUMMARY  

          This bill establishes safe gun storage requirements when persons  
          prohibited from owning a gun live in a household where a gun is  
          present; allows the Department of Justice (DOJ) to delay gun  
          sales when background checks are not completed; and requires the  
          DOJ to be notified that gun purchasers have taken possession of  
          a gun. Specifically, this bill:  

          1)Prohibits a person who is residing with someone prohibited by  
            state or federal law from possessing a gun from keeping a gun  
            at that residence unless the gun is kept within a locked  
            container, locked gun safe, locked trunk, locked with a  
            locking device, disabled by a gun safety device, or carried on  
            the person. A violation of this provision is a misdemeanor,  
            punishable by up to six months in county jail and/or a fine of  
            up to $1,000.

          2)Requires the DOJ to notify a licensed firearms dealer when the  
            departent is unable to complete a background check within two  
            days prior to the conclusion of the required 10-day waiting  
            period, and requires the dealer to withhold delivery until  
            seven days after the notification is received by the dealer. 

          3)Requires, beginning January 1, 2015, that dealers notify DOJ  
            that a person who applied to purchase a gun took possession of  
            the gun.

           FISCAL EFFECT  

          1)Significant ongoing special fund costs (Dealer Record of Sale  
            account (DROS)), in the low millions of dollars, for DOJ  








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            Bureau of Firearms workload. 

            According to DOJ, 80% of DROS eligibility checks are  
            determined during the final two days of the 10-day waiting  
            period.  Based on 80% background not clearing by the eighth  
            day, DOJ staff would have to call dealers on approximately  
            3,000 DROS every day, requiring about 70 new positions. With  
            attendant office expenses, annual costs would exceed $5  
            million.

          2)Costs would be offset to an unknown extent by the reduced  
            likelihood of litigation due to the inability to complete the  
            checks.

          3)Minor nonreimbursable local incarceration costs, offset to a  
            degree by increased fine revenue, to the extent persons are  
            convicted of the misdemeanor storage provisions of the bill. 
                
            COMMENTS  

           1)Rationale  . The author's intent is to (a) keep guns from  
            prohibited persons; (b) give the DOJ sufficient time to  
            conduct background checks in cases in which access to records  
            may not be available; and (c) provide additional information  
            to the DOJ's Automated Firearms System - the fact that a  
            person has taken possession of a purchased gun. 

           2)Support  .  The California Chapter of the Brady Campaign notes  
            current law requires a background check and a 10-day waiting  
            period prior to providing the gun to a prospective buyer. In a  
            small number of cases, usually because court disposition  
            documents are unavailable, the DOJ has not been authorizing  
            delivery of the firearm by the dealer. This bill specifically  
            authorizes the DOJ additional time to complete the background  
            check, if needed.  
             
             In addition, the bill's requirement that a person who resides  
            in the same residence with a person who is prohibited from  
            possessing a gun, may not keep a gun in the residence unless  
            it is secured, is an appropriate cautionary measure.

           3)Opposition  . The California Association of Federal Firearms  
            Licensees states, "This measure allows the California  
            Department of Justice to arbitrarily extend the waiting period  
            for firearm transactions with no due process or remedy for the  








                                                                  AB 500
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            firearm purchaser or impacted sellers. AB 500 impacts  
            California enterprise by creating unpredictable processes,  
            increasing liability, and imposing additional administrative  
            burdens on thousands of small businesses?.
           
            "AB 500 also infringes on the rights of those who reside with  
            a prohibited person, including those who are prohibited but  
            did not commit any crime of violence."

           4)Technical drafting work is needed on this bill  . The author has  
            agreed to continue working on the language while the bill is  
            on the Suspense File. 

           
           


           Analysis Prepared by  :    Geoff Long / APPR. / (916) 319-2081