BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 535
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          CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS
          AB 535 (Quirk)
          As Amended  August 15, 2013
          Majority vote
           
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          |ASSEMBLY:  |76-0 |(April 25,      |SENATE: |39-0 |(August 26,    |
          |           |     |2013)           |        |     |2013)          |
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           Original Committee Reference:    PUB. S.  

           SUMMARY  :  Requires a law enforcement agency to request  
          activation of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) when the law  
          enforcement receives a report that an abduction has occurred or  
          that a child has been taken by anyone, including a custodial  
          parent or guardian, and specific other requirements are met.
           
          The Senate amendments  clarify that a child may be abducted by  
          anyone, including a custodial parent or guardian.
           
          EXISTING LAW  :

          1)States that if an abduction has been reported to a law  
            enforcement agency and the agency determines that a child 17  
            years of age or younger, or an individual with a proven mental  
            or physical disability, has been abducted and is in imminent  
            danger of serious bodily injury or death and there is  
            information available that, if disseminated to the general  
            public, could assist in the safe recovery of the victim, the  
            agency, shall request the activation of the EAS within the  
            appropriate local area.  

          2)Provides that California Highway Patrol (CHP) in consultation  
            with the Department of Justice (DOJ), as well as a  
            representative from the California State Sheriffs'  
            Association, the California Police Chiefs' Association and the  
            California Police Officers' Association shall develop policies  
            and procedures providing instruction specifying how law  
            enforcement agencies, broadcasters participating in the EAS,  
            and where appropriate, other supplemental warning systems,  
            shall proceed after qualifying abduction has been reported to  
            a law enforcement agency.  

          3)Provides that in addition to the circumstances described under  








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            existing law relating to "Amber Alerts," upon the request of  
            an authorized person at a law enforcement agency that is  
            investigating an offense, the CHP shall activate the EAS and  
            issue a blue alert if all of the following conditions are met:

             a)   A law enforcement officer has been killed, suffers  
               serious bodily injury, or is assaulted with a deadly  
               weapon, and the suspect has fled the scene of the offense;

             b)   A law enforcement agency investigating the offense has  
               determined that the suspect poses an imminent threat to the  
               public or other law enforcement personnel;

             c)   A detailed description of the suspect's vehicle or  
               license plate is available for broadcast;

             d)   Public dissemination of available information may help  
               avert further harm or accelerate apprehension of the  
               suspect; and,

             e)   The CHP has been designated to use the federally  
               authorized EAS for the issuance of blue alerts.  

          4)Defines a "Blue Alert" as a quick response system designed to  
            issue and coordinate alerts following an attack upon a law  
            enforcement officer, as specified.   

          5)Provides that the blue alert system incorporates a variety of  
            notification resources and developing technologies that may be  
            tailored to the circumstances and geography of the underlying  
            attack.  The blue alert system shall utilize the  
            state-controlled Emergency Digital Information Service (EDIS),  
            local digital signs, focused text, or other technologies, as  
            appropriate, in addition to the federal EAS, if authorized and  
            under conditions permitted by the federal government.  

          6)Defines a "Silver Alert" as a notification system, that can be  
            activated as specified, and is designed to issue and  
            coordinate alerts with respect to a person 65 years of age or  
            older who is reported missing.

          7)States that a law enforcement agency may request a Silver  
            Alert be activated if that agency determines that all of the  
            following conditions are met in regard to the investigation of  
            the missing person:








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             a)   The missing person is 65 years of age or older.

             b)   The investigating law enforcement agency has utilized  
               all available local resources.

             c)   The law enforcement agency determines that the person  
               has gone missing under unexplained or suspicious  
               circumstances.

             d)   The law enforcement agency believes that the person is  
               in danger because of age, health, mental or physical  
               disability, environment or weather conditions, that the  
               person is in the company of a potentially dangerous person,  
               or there are other factors indicating that the person may  
               be in peril.

             e)   There is information available that, if disseminated to  
               the public, could assist in the safe recovery of the  
               missing person.  

           AS PASSED BY THE ASSEMBLY  , this bill was substantially similar  
          to the version passed by the Senate.
          
          FISCAL EFFECT  :  According to the Senate Appropriations  
          Committee, potential annual costs in the range of $45,000 to  
          $90,000 (Special Fund:  Motor Vehicle Account) to the extent the  
          provisions of this bill result in additional AMBER alerts.  As  
          the provisions of this bill essentially clarify current  
          practice, additional costs are not estimated to be significant.

           COMMENTS  :  According to the author, "According to the US  
          Department of Justice, 800,000 children are reported missing  
          every year in the US. An estimated 200,000 are abducted by a  
          family member.  No parent ever wants to have to report a missing  
          child.  However, when such action is needed, quick and  
          coordinated response by law enforcement can help to safely  
          return the child. 

          "According to the DOJ, 75% of children who are abducted and  
          later found murdered were killed within three hours of being  
          abducted.  As such, quick response is critical in the safe  
          return of children. 

          "The Amber Alert system has been a powerful tool is helping law  








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          enforcement to safely and quickly recover abducted children. 

          "However, there is a discrepancy in current law that needs to be  
          addressed.  There is disagreement if, all other factors  
          considered, an AMBER Alert can be issued if the abductor is a  
          parent or guardian.  The relationship between the child and the  
          abductor should not be an inhibiting factor if there is reason  
          to believe that the child's life is at risk. "

          Please see the policy committee analysis for a full discussion  
          of this bill.
           

          Analysis Prepared by  :    Gregory Pagan / PUB. S. / (916)  
          319-3744 


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