BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó


          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                        SB 293|
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                                    THIRD READING

          Bill No:  SB 293
          Author:   DeSaulnier (D), et al.
          Amended:  5/24/13
          Vote:     21

           SENATE PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE  :  5-2, 4/16/13
          AYES:  Hancock, Block, De León, Liu, Steinberg
          NOES:  Anderson, Knight

           SENATE APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE  :  5-2, 5/23/13
          AYES:  De León, Hill, Lara, Padilla, Steinberg
          NOES:  Walters, Gaines

           SUBJECT  :    Firearms:  owner-authorized handguns

           SOURCE  :     Author

           DIGEST  :    This bill defines "owner-authorized handgun" and  
          provides that owner-authorized handguns will comply with  
          specified performance standards; and states that if two  
          owner-authorized handguns have been placed on the "Roster of  
          Handguns Certified for Sale (roster)", then commencing two years  
          from the date that the second handgun was placed on the roster,  
          no handgun may be placed on the roster by the Department of  
          Justice (DOJ) that is not an owner-authorized handgun.

           ANALYSIS  :    

          Existing law:



                                                                     SB 293

          1.Provides that beginning January 1, 2001, except as specified,  
            any person in this state who manufactures or causes to be  
            manufactured, imports into the state for sale, keeps for sale,  
            offers or exposes for sale, gives, or lends any unsafe handgun  
            shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not  
            exceeding one year.
          2.Defines an unsafe handgun as any pistol, revolver, or other  
            firearm capable of being concealed upon the person, which  
            lacks various specified safety mechanisms and does not pass  
            specified safety tests.

          3.Provides that, beginning January 1, 2010, all semiautomatic  
            pistols that are not already listed on the "not unsafe  
            handgun" roster, must be designed and equipped with a  
            microscopic array of characters that identify the make, model,  
            and serial number of the pistol, etched or otherwise  
            imprinted, as specified.

          4.Requires manufacturers to submit samples of new handgun models  
            for testing to determine if they are unsafe or may be approved  
            for sale, as specified.

          5.Requires the DOJ to compile a roster listing all of the  
            handguns that have been tested and determined not to be  

          This bill:

          1.Defines "owner-authorized handgun" to mean a handgun that has  
            a permanent programmable biometric or other permanent  
            programmable feature as part of its original manufacture that  
            renders the handgun incapable of being fired except when  
            activated by the lawful owner, or other users authorized by  
            the lawful owner, and that cannot be readily deactivated.

          2.Provides that a manufacturer that has developed an  
            owner-authorized handgun meeting the minimum standards as  
            specified, will submit the handgun for testing at the  
            manufacturer's expense, before the handgun may be placed on  
            the roster.

          3.Provides that if two owner-authorized handguns have been  
            placed on the roster, then commencing two years from the date  



                                                                     SB 293

            that the second handgun was placed on the roster, no handgun  
            may be placed on the roster by the DOJ that is not an  
            owner-authorized handgun.

          4.Provides that owner-authorized handguns shall comply with the  
            following minimum performance standards:

             A.   The firearm shall not fail to recognize the authorized  
               user, and shall not falsely recognize an unauthorized user,  
               more than one time per thousand recognition attempts.

             B.   The time from first contact to use recognition and  
               firearm enablement shall be no more than 0.3 seconds.

             C.   The time from loss of contact with the authorized user  
               to firearm disablement shall be no more than 0.3 seconds.

             D.   When the firearm is enabled, the "ready" condition shall  
               be indicated by a visible indicator.

             E.   If the recognition technology on the firearm is battery  
               operated, the firearm shall be equipped with a low power  
               indicator that emits an audible signal.

             F.   If the user is not recognized, or if the power supply  
               fails, the firearm shall be inoperable.

             G.   Enabling authorized user information shall be stored in  
               the firearm as permanent memory that is restored when power  
               is restored.

             H.   The firearm shall be capable of use by more than one  
               authorized user and, if the firearm uses hand recognition  
               technology, it shall recognize either of the authorized  
               user's hands.

          5.Provides that an owner-authorized handgun shall only be  
            programmed by a licensed firearms dealer and that biometric  
            data collected for purposes of programming the  
            owner-authorized handgun shall not be used for any purpose  
            other than programming the owner-authorized handgun.

          6.Provides that DOJ shall not retain any biometric data that may  
            be stored in an owner-authorized handgun.



                                                                     SB 293

          Biometric (fingerprint or grip recognition) technology ensures  
          that a handgun is only fired by the owner or an authorized user.  
           Applying personalization technology to handguns renders them  
          inoperable by unauthorized persons - including children and  
          thieves - thereby helping to prevent both unintentional and  
          intentional gun violence.  Injuries, homicides, suicides, and  
          accidental shootings could all be significantly reduced in  
          California, along with the illegal transfer of firearms.

          Biometric technologies, such as fingerprint or grip recognition,  
          are already widely used in other applications and consumer  
          products, including computers, cell phones, credit cards and  
          door locks.

          In December of 2002, New Jersey passed a related handgun  
          personalization law that requires all new handguns sold in the  
          state be equipped with biometric sensors beginning three years  
          after personalized handguns become commercially available.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  Yes    
          Local:  Yes

          According to the Senate Appropriations Committee, minor ongoing  
          costs (Firearm Safety and Enforcement Special Fund) to the DOJ  
          to submit owner-authorized handguns meeting minimum standards,  
          as specified, for testing at the manufacturer's expense.

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  5/24/13)

          AFSCME, AFL-CIO
          California Chapter of the American College of Emergency  
          California Chapters of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun  
          City of Los Angeles
          Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence

          OPPOSITION  :    (Verified  5/24/13)

          California Association of Firearms Retailers
          California Sportsman's Lobby



                                                                     SB 293

          County of Riverside, Sheriff Stan Sniff
          County of Shasta, Sheriff Tom Bosenko
          Crossroads of the West Gun Shows
          National Rifle Association
          National Shooting Sports Foundation
          Outdoor Sportsman's Coalition of California
          Safari Club International

           ARGUMENTS IN SUPPORT  :    According to the author's office:

               This bill is about saving lives.  The three E's of injury  
               prevention are education, enforcement, and engineering.  SB  
               293 represents the "engineering" piece of prevention.

               This is a technology waiting bill.  It does not force gun  
               manufacturers to develop the technology.  This bill simply  
               states that if and when the technology is available it must  
               be incorporated in all handguns sold in California.

           ARGUMENTS IN OPPOSITION  :    The Outdoor Sportsmen's Coalition of  
          California writes:

               Sportsmen desire to buy quality firearms, including  
               handguns for hunting.  SB 293, by mandating "user  
               authorized" handgun technology, would make it impossible  
               for them to purchase the handgun of their choice as the  
               firearm would have to be equipped with cumbersome user  
               authorizing technology at the expense of other features  
               that are desirable.  This technology, in many cases, would  
               also make a handgun overly bulky.  This is not an attitude  
               that is wanted by sportsmen in the field.

               SB 293 fails to provide standards or procedures for  
               manufacturers and the Attorney general to follow in  
               determining whether a given design is in compliance.   
               Through what process will the Attorney General know when a  
               handgun actually meets the SB 293 mandate?

          JG:ej  5/25/13   Senate Floor Analyses 



                                                                     SB 293

                           SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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