BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                AB 2264
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        AB 2264 (Levine)
        As Amended  August 4, 2014
        2/3 vote
        |ASSEMBLY: |     |(May 23, 2014)  |SENATE: |36-0 |(August 13, 2014)    |
             (vote not relevant)

        |COMMITTEE VOTE:  |7-0  |(August 26, 2014)   |RECOMMENDATION: | concur   |
        |(Pub. S.)        |     |                    |                |          |
        |                 |     |                    |                |          |
        Original Committee Reference:    HEALTH  

         SUMMARY  :  Extends eligibility for reimbursement under the Victim  
        Compensation Program to cover costs associated with the injury or  
        death of a guide, signal, or service dog as a result of a crime, as  

         The Senate amendments  delete the Assembly version of this bill, and  

        1)Allow a person to apply for compensation, of up to $10,000, to the  
          California Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board (VCGCB)  

           a)   A person causes injury or death of any guide, signal, or  
             service dog through the failure or reckless disregard to  
             exercise control over his or her dog or through his or her  
             intentional actions; and,

           b)   The defendant is unable to pay restitution for specified  
             costs associated with the injury or death of the guide, signal,  
             or service dog.

        2)Extend eligibility criteria for reimbursement from the board to  
          include the expense of veterinary services, replacement costs, or  
          other reasonable expenses, as ordered by the court, incurred when  
          the injury or death of a guide, signal, or service dog either  
          permitted or intentionally caused by a person and the defendant is  
          unable to make restitution to the victim.


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         EXISTING LAW  : 

        1)Provides that all crime victims have the right to seek and secure  
          restitution from the perpetrators of these crimes.  Requires  
          restitution to be ordered in every case without exception.   
          Requires, when a defendant has been ordered to pay restitution,  
          all money or property collected from the defendant to be first  
          applied to satisfy restitution orders.

        2)Requires the court to order a defendant to make restitution to the  
          victim or victims of the defendant's crime, based on the amount of  
          loss claimed by the victim or victims or any other showing to the  
          court.  Requires the court to order full restitution for the  
          losses caused by the defendant's crime unless the court finds and  
          states compelling and extraordinary reasons for not doing so.

        3)Punishes any person to permit any dog owned, harbored, or  
          controlled by him or her to cause injury to, or the death of, any  
          guide, signal, or service dog, as defined, as follows:

           a)   As an infraction by a fine not exceeding $250 if the injury  
             or death to the dog was caused by the person's failure to  
             exercise ordinary care in the control of his or her dog;

           b)   As a misdemeanor by imprisonment of up to one year, a fine  
             of between $2,500 and $5,000, or both imprisonment and the fine  
             if the injury or death of the dog was caused by the person's  
             reckless disregard in the exercise of control over his or her  
             dog under circumstances that constitute such a departure from  
             the conduct of a reasonable person as to be incompatible with a  
             proper regard for the safety and life of any guide, signal, or  
             service dog.

        4)Authorizes a court to order a person convicted of causing injury  
          or death to any guide, signal, or service dog to make restitution  
          to the person who had ownership or custody of the dog and for any  
          veterinary bills and replacement costs or other reasonable costs  
          deemed appropriate by the court.

        5)States that any person who intentionally causes injury to, or the  
          death of, any guide, signal or service dog, while the dog is in  
          the discharge of its duties is guilty of a misdemeanor and  
          punishable by imprisonment in the county jail up to one year, a  
          fine not exceeding $10,000, or both.


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         AS PASSED BY THE ASSEMBLY  , this bill required the State Department  
        of Public Health (DPH) to negotiate with any federally recognized  
        tribe for a delegated program under which the tribe will assume  
        responsibility for carrying out DPH's duties related to the  
        licensing and regulation of primary care facilities.

         FISCAL EFFECT  :  According to the Senate Appropriations Committee:

        1)Potential minor increase in claims reimbursement likely less than  
          $50,000 (Special Fund) annually paid to victims to cover costs for  
          veterinary services, replacement costs, and other reasonable  
          expenses as ordered by the court.  Assuming reimbursement for two  
          victims at the maximum reimbursement amount of $10,000 would  
          result in additional costs of $20,000.  Arrest and conviction data  
          from the Department of Justice for the past three years indicate  
          only one or two arrests (and no convictions) per year for the  
          specified crimes potentially eligible for compensation.

        2)Minor ongoing costs (Special Fund) to the VCGCB to process  
          additional claims for compensation.

         COMMENTS  :  According to the author, "Guide, service, and signal dogs  
        are highly trained animals that make a healthy, fulfilling and  
        independent life possible for people with a variety of physical  
        challenges. Current law states that it is a criminal offence to  
        cause injury, whether intentional or unintentional, to a guide,  
        signal or service dog.  A defendant that is convicted in these  
        attacks is required to provide restitution for the harm caused to  
        the dog. 

        "However, if the defendant is unable to provide immediate  
        compensation, the victim is left unable to obtain funds to care for  
        the injuries sustained to their dog. This bill would make the victim  
        eligible to apply for compensation under the Victim's Compensation  
        Fund as the dog is an extension of the person and a vital component  
        to their independence."

         Analysis Prepared by  :    Shaun Naidu / PUB. S. / (916) 319-3744 FN:  


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