BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:  April 2, 2013
          Counsel:       Sandy Uribe


                         ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON PUBLIC SAFETY
                                 Tom Ammiano, Chair

                     AB 979 (Weber) - As Amended:  April 2, 2013
           
           
           SUMMARY  :  Requires specified peace officers assigned to a  
          jurisdiction that includes navigable waters to complete a course  
          in basic maritime operations if the local governing body opts in  
          and if the federal Department of Homeland Security provides  
          funding.  Specifically,  this bill  :  

          1)Declares a need for legislation requiring peace officers who  
            serve in jurisdictions which include ports, navigable lakes,  
            and rivers to be certified by the Commission on Peace Officers  
            Standards and Training (POST) based upon completion of a  
            course in basic maritime law.

          2)States that these peace officers have a unique set of  
            responsibilities because they perform tasks that are specific  
            to these particular environments and are called upon to ensure  
            safety and security in light of the unique set of maritime  
            laws and regulations.

          3)States that as a result of post-9/11 homeland security and  
            port security missions, maritime training has not only  
            evolved, but also become a necessity among law enforcement  
            agencies whose jurisdictions include maritime areas.  As  
            agencies such as the Coast Guard, sheriff's departments, and  
            police departments enhance their maritime presence, adequacy  
            and consistency of training is critical.

          4)States that unlike other requirements in the POST system,  
            there are no statewide standards for tactical training for  
            state and local maritime officers.

          5)States that a POST-certified curriculum consistent with  
            federal doctrine and current tactical training would benefit  
            the growing number of law enforcement agencies that have  
            created specialized maritime units, and achieve consistent  
            adherence to the Department of Homeland Security's strategy  








                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  2

            for maritime security to combat terrorism.

          6)Requires peace officers to complete a course in basic maritime  
            operations for law enforcement officers if they meet all of  
            the following criteria:

             a)   The officer is employed by a city, county, city and  
               county, or district that has adopted a resolution  
               implementing the Act;

             b)   The officer falls within a classification identified by  
               the local governing body;

             c)   The officer is assigned in a jurisdiction that includes  
               navigable waters; and, 

             d)   The officer serves as a crew member on a waterborne law  
               enforcement vessel.

          7)Specifies that the course shall include boat handling, chart  
            reading, navigation rules, and comprehensive training  
            regarding maritime boarding, arrest procedures, vessel  
            identification, searches, and counterterrorism practices and  
            procedures, and requires that the curriculum be consistent  
            with federal standards and tactical training.

          8)Provides that the Act shall only become operative in a city,  
            county, city and county, or district when all of the following  
            conditions apply:

             a)   The federal Department of Homeland Security provides  
               funding to the locality; 

             b)   The local governing body adopts a resolution agreeing to  
               implement the Act; and,

             c)   The local governing body identifies the specific  
               classification of peace officers in their jurisdiction that  
               will be subject to the training requirements.

          EXISTING LAW  : 

          1)Requires all peace officers to complete an introductory course  
            of training prescribed by POST, demonstrated by passage of an  
            appropriate examination developed by POST.  [Penal Code  








                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  3

            Section 832(a).]

          2)Empowers POST to develop and implement programs to increase  
            the effectiveness of law enforcement.  (Penal Code Section  
            13503.)

          3)Authorizes POST, for the purpose of raising the level of  
            competence of local law enforcement officers, to adopt rules  
            establishing minimum standards related to physical, mental and  
            moral fitness and training that shall govern the recruitment  
            of any peace officers in California.  [Penal Code Section  
            13510(a).]

          4)Requires POST to conduct research concerning job-related  
            educational standards and job-related selection standards to  
            include vision, hearing, physical ability, and emotional  
            stability and adopt standards supported by this research.   
            [Penal Code Section 13510(b).]

          5)Requires POST to prepare a course of instruction for the  
            training of peace officers in the use of tear gas.  (Penal  
            Code Section 13514.)

          6)Requires POST to develop and disseminate guidelines and  
            standardized training recommendations for all law enforcement  
            officers, supervisors, or managers whose agency assigns them  
            to perform, supervise, or manage Special Weapons and Tactics  
            (SWAT) operations.  [Penal Code Section 13514.1(a).]

          7)Requires POST implement a course or courses of instruction for  
            the training of law enforcement officers in the handling of  
            acts of civil disobedience and adopt guidelines that may be  
            followed by police agencies in responding to acts of civil  
            disobedience.  [Penal Code Section 13514.5(a).]

          8)Requires every police officer or deputy sheriff who is  
            assigned field or investigative duties to complete an elder  
            and dependent adult abuse training course certified by POST.   
            [Penal Code Section 13515(a).]

          9)Requires POST establish and update a continuing education  
            classroom training course related to law enforcement  
            interaction with mentally disabled persons. [Penal Code  
            Section 13515.25(a).]









                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  4

          10)Requires POST create and make available on DVD and may  
            distribute electronically a course on how to recognize and  
            interact with persons with autistic spectrum disorders.   
            [Penal Code Section 13515.35(a).]

          11)Requires every police officer or deputy sheriff who is  
            assigned field or investigative duties to complete a high  
            technology crimes and computer seizure training course  
            certified by POST.  (Penal Code Section 13515.55.)

          12)Requires POST to prepare guidelines establishing standard  
            procedures which may be followed by police agencies in the  
            investigation of sexual assault cases, and cases involving the  
            sexual exploitation or sexual abuse of children, including,  
            police response to, and treatment of, victims of these crimes.  
             This training must be included in the basic certificate  
            issued by POST or no reimbursement will be made to local  
            agencies based on attendance at any course which does not  
            comply with this requirement.  [Penal Code Section 13516(a) -  
            (b).]

          13)Requires POST to prepare guidelines establishing standard  
            procedures which may be followed by police agencies in the  
            detection, investigation, and response to cases in which a  
            minor is a victim of an act of abuse or neglect including  
            procedures for determining whether or not a child should be  
            taken into protective custody and minimizing the number of  
            times a child is interviewed by law enforcement personnel.  
            [Penal Code Section 13517(a).]

          14)Requires POST to prepare guidelines establishing standard  
            procedures which may be followed by police agencies and  
            prosecutors in interviewing minor witnesses.  (Penal Code  
            Section 13517.5.)

          15)Requires POST to develop guidelines and training for use by  
            state and local law enforcement officers to address issues  
            related to child safety when a caretaker parent or guardian is  
            arrested.  [Penal Code Section 13517.7(a).]

          16)Requires POST to implement a course or courses of instruction  
            for the training of law enforcement officers in California in  
            the handling of domestic violence complaints and also shall  
            develop guidelines for law enforcement response to domestic  
            violence.  [Penal Code Section 13519(a).]








                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  5


          17)Requires POST to implement a course or courses of instruction  
            for the training of law enforcement officers in California in  
            the handling of stalking complaints and also shall develop  
            guidelines for law enforcement response to stalking.  [Penal  
            Code Section 13519.05(a).] 

          18)Requires POST to implement a course or courses of instruction  
            for the training of law enforcement officers and law  
            enforcement dispatchers in the handling of missing person and  
            runaway cases and shall also develop guidelines for law  
            enforcement response to missing person and runaway cases.   
            [Penal Code Section 13519.1(a).]

          19)Requires POST to include in the basic training course for law  
            enforcement officers, adequate instruction in the handling of  
            persons with developmental disabilities or mental illness, or  
            both.  [Penal Code Section 13519.2(a).]

          20)Requires POST to establish a course on the nature of sudden  
            infant death syndrome and the handling of cases involving the  
            sudden deaths of infants.  [Penal Code Section 13519.3(a).]

          21)Requires POST to develop and disseminate guidelines and  
            training for all law enforcement officers in California who  
            adhere to the standards approved by the commission, on the  
            racial and cultural differences among the residents of this  
            state.  [Penal Code Section 13519.4(a).]

          22)Requires POST to implement a course or courses of instruction  
            to provide ongoing training to the appropriate peace officers  
            on methods of gang and drug law enforcement.  (Penal Code  
            Section 13519.5.)

          23)Requires POST to develop guidelines and a course of  
            instruction and training for law enforcement officers who are  
            employed as peace officers, or who are not yet employed as a  
            peace officer but are enrolled in a training academy for law  
            enforcement officers, addressing hate crimes.  [Penal Code  
            Section 13519.6(a).]

          24)Requires POST to develop a two-hour telecourse to be made  
            available to all law enforcement agencies in California on  
            crimes against homeless persons and on how to deal effectively  
            and humanely with homeless persons, including homeless persons  








                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  6

            with disabilities.  [Penal Code Section 13519.64(b).]

          25)Requires POST to develop complaint guidelines to be followed  
            by city police departments, county sheriffs' departments,  
            districts, and state university departments, for peace  
            officers who are victims of sexual harassment in the  
            workplace.  [Penal Code Section 13519.7(a).]

          26)Requires POST to implement a course or courses of instruction  
            for the regular and periodic training of law enforcement  
            officers in the handling of high-speed vehicle pursuits and to  
            develop uniform, minimum guidelines for adoption and  
            promulgation by California law enforcement agencies for  
            response to high-speed vehicle pursuits. [Penal Code Section  
            13519.8(a)(1).]

          27)Requires POST to establish the Robert Presley Institute of  
            Criminal Investigation which will make available to criminal  
            investigators of California's law enforcement agencies an  
            advanced training program to meet the needs of working  
            investigators in specialty assignments, such as arson, auto  
            theft, homicide, and narcotics.  [Penal Code Section  
            13519.9(a).]

          28)Requires POST to establish training standards and develop a  
            course of instruction that includes the criteria for the  
            curriculum content recommended by the Emergency Response  
            Training Advisory Committee involving the responsibilities of  
            first responders to terrorism incidents.  [Penal Code Section  
            13519.12(a).]

          29)Requires POST to implement a course or courses of instruction  
            for the training of law enforcement officers in California in  
            the handling of human trafficking complaints and also shall  
            develop guidelines for law enforcement response to human  
            trafficking.  [Penal Code Section 13519.14(a).]

          30)Requires POST to prepare guidelines establishing standard  
            procedures which may be followed by law enforcement agencies  
            in the investigation and reporting of cases involving  
            anti-reproductive-rights crimes.  (Penal Code Section  
            13519.15.)
             
           FISCAL EFFECT  :   Unknown









                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  7

           COMMENTS :   

           1)Author's Statement  :  According to the author, "Maritime  
            training has not only evolved but become a necessity among law  
            enforcement agencies whose jurisdictions may include maritime  
            areas. For emergencies or multi-jurisdictional operations, the  
            time to set a standard that all agencies and departments can  
            share and build upon is long overdue.

          "California must set in motion the necessary statutes,  
            regulations and curriculum to provide the level of training  
            and standards for safe effective waterborne law enforcement  
            across the state. AB 979 will provide for these critical  
            statewide standards and training for law enforcement operating  
            in a maritime environment.

          "The Post Commission has already approved three courses for  
            maritime peace officers that are taught at the regional  
            maritime law enforcement training center at the port of Los  
            Angeles. These courses can be exported to any training  
            facility. Additionally, this bill would come at no-cost to the  
            state, as its provisions would apply only if federal funds  
            become available."

           2)Argument in Support  :  According to the  Port of Los Angeles   
            (the sponsor of this bill), "Local, state, and federal law  
            enforcement agencies maintain joint responsibility and  
            authority within marine ports, as well as territorial and  
            inland waters. Officer safety is always a priority in any law  
            enforcement agency. Personnel in waterborne environments, such  
            as port navigation waters and dockside environments, require a  
            unique set of responsibilities. All police personnel perform  
            tasks that are specific to their physical operational areas  
            and the waterborne peace officer force is required to deliver  
            security and safety in the area of marine regulation.

          "As a result of post 9/11 homeland security and port security  
            missions, maritime training has not only evolved but become a  
            necessity among law enforcement agencies whose jurisdictions  
            may include maritime areas. As agencies such as the Coast  
            Guard, sheriff's departments, and police departments have  
            enhanced their maritime presence, concerns have arisen over  
            the adequacy and consistency of training. Cases where  
            multi-agency operations were taking place or where agencies  
            were assisting each other during routine operations were of  








                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  8

            particular interest. Unlike other requirements in the Police  
            Officers Standards for Training (POST) system, there are no  
            statewide standards for tactical training for state and local  
            maritime officers.

          "A POST Certified curriculum consistent with federal doctrine  
            and current tactical training would benefit the growing number  
            of law enforcement agencies that have created maritime units.  
            Course curriculum would provide basic instruction for  
            crewmembers on law enforcement and public safety vessels  
            operated by local authorities. Boat handling, chart reading  
            and navigation rules are a necessity to personnel.  
            Additionally, training on maritime boardings, arrest  
            procedures, vessel identification, searches, and  
            counter-terrorism practices and procedures are critical to  
            waterborne policing. This training would also achieve  
            consistent adherence to the Department of Homeland Security's  
            strategy for maritime security to combat terrorism."

           3)Related Legislation  :  AB 602 (Yamada) requires POST to  
            establish, by July 1, 2015, and keep updated, a training  
            course relating to law enforcement interaction with mentally  
            disabled or developmentally disabled persons living within a  
            state mental hospital or state developmental center.  AB 602  
            will be heard by this Committee today.

           4)Prior Legislation  :  

             a)   AB 2571 (Silva), of the 2011-12 Legislative Session,  
               would have required every peace officer assigned to a  
               jurisdiction that includes a waterborne environment to  
               complete a POST course in basic maritime law for law  
               enforcement officers, as a condition of receiving specified  
               state aid.  AB 2571 was held in the Assembly Appropriations  
               Committee.

             b)   SB 1582 (Simitian) of the 2007-08 Legislative Session,  
               would have established an "ocean ranger" program and  
               required training in maritime law.  SB 1528 failed passage  
               in this Committee.

           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :   

           Support 
           








                                                                  AB 979
                                                                  Page  9

          Port of Los Angeles (Sponsor)
          California Association of Harbor Masters and Port Captains
          California Association of Port Authorities
          California Marine Parks and Harbors Association
          California Yacht Brokers Association
          Marina Recreation Association
          National Marine Manufacturers Association
          Western Boaters Safety Group

           Opposition 
           
          None
           

          Analysis Prepared by  :    Sandy Uribe / PUB. S. / (916) 319-3744