Amended in Senate July 15, 2015

Amended in Senate June 30, 2015

Amended in Assembly April 16, 2015

California Legislature—2015–16 Regular Session

Assembly BillNo. 487


Introduced by Assembly Member Gonzalez

(Coauthor: Senator Anderson)

February 23, 2015


An act to amend Section 3041.5 of the Penal Code, relating to parole.

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL’S DIGEST

AB 487, as amended, Gonzalez. Parole hearings: notification of district attorneys.

Existing law provides that, one year prior to the minimum eligible parole release date of an inmate serving an indeterminate sentence, a panel of 2 or more commissioners or deputy commissioners of the Board of Parole Hearings shall meet with the inmate and set a parole release date, as specified. Existing law, as amended by Proposition 9, the Victim’s Bill of Rights Act of 2008: Marsy’s Law, at the November 4, 2008, statewide general election, establishes procedures at all hearings for the purpose of reviewing a prisoner’s parole suitability, or the setting, postponing, or rescinding of parole dates, and provides prisoners and victims specified rights at these hearings.

This bill would require notification of the district attorney of the county in which the offense was committed, or his or her designee, to receive notification of specified parole proceedings.

begin insert

This bill would incorporate additional changes to Section 3041.5 of the Penal Code proposed by SB 230 that would become operative if this bill and SB 230 are both chaptered and this bill is chaptered last.

end insert

Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: yes. State-mandated local program: no.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

P2    1

SECTION 1.  

Section 3041.5 of the Penal Code is amended to
2read:

3

3041.5.  

(a) At all hearings for the purpose of reviewing a
4prisoner’s parole suitability, or the setting, postponing, or
5rescinding of parole dates, with the exception of en banc review
6of tie votes, the following shall apply:

7(1) At least 10 days prior tobegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert hearing by the Board of Parole
8Hearings, the prisoner shall be permitted to review his or her file
9begin delete whichend deletebegin insert thatend insert will be examined by the board and shall have the
10opportunity to enter a written response to any material contained
11in the file.

12(2) The prisoner shall be permitted to be present, to ask and
13answer questions, and to speak on his or her own behalf. Neither
14the prisoner nor the attorney for the prisoner shall be entitled to
15ask questions of a person appearing at the hearing pursuant to
16subdivision (b) of Section 3043.

17(3) Unless legal counsel is required by another law, a person
18designated by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
19shall be present to ensure that all facts relevant to the decision are
20presented, including, if necessary, contradictory assertions as to
21matters of fact that have not been resolved by departmental or
22other procedures.

23(4) The prisoner and a person described in subdivision (b) of
24Section 3043 shall be permitted to request and receive a
25stenographic record of all proceedings.

26(5) If the hearing is for the purpose of postponing or rescinding
27of parole dates, the prisoner shall havebegin insert theend insert rights set forth in
28paragraphs (3) and (4) of subdivision (c) of Section 2932.

29(6) The board shall set a date to reconsider whether an inmate
30should be released on parole that ensures a meaningful
31consideration of whether the inmate is suitable for release on
32parole.

P3    1(b) (1) Within 10 days following a meeting where a parole date
2has been set, the board shall send the prisoner a written statement
3setting forth his or her parole date, the conditions he or she must
4meet in order to be released on the date set, and the consequences
5of failure to meet those conditions.

6(2) Within 20 days following a meeting where a parole date has
7not been set, the board shall send the prisoner a written statement
8setting forth the reason or reasons for refusal to set a parole date,
9and suggest activities in which he or she might participate that will
10benefit him or her while he or she is incarcerated.

11(3) The board shall schedule the next hearing, after considering
12the views and interests of the victim, as follows:

13(A) Fifteen years after a hearing at which parole is denied, unless
14the board finds by clear and convincing evidence that the criteria
15relevant to the setting of parole release dates enumerated in
16subdivision (a) of Section 3041 are such that consideration of the
17public and victim’s safety does not require a more lengthy period
18of incarceration for the prisoner than 10 additional years.

19(B) Ten years after a hearing at which parole is denied, unless
20the board finds by clear and convincing evidence that the criteria
21relevant to the setting of parole release dates enumerated in
22subdivision (a) of Section 3041 are such that consideration of the
23public and victim’s safety does not require a more lengthy period
24of incarceration for the prisoner than seven additional years.

25(C) Three years, five years, or seven years after a hearing at
26which parole is denied, because the criteria relevant to the setting
27of parole release dates enumerated in subdivision (a) of Section
283041 are such that consideration of the public and victim’s safety
29requires a more lengthy period of incarceration for the prisoner,
30but does not require a more lengthy period of incarceration for the
31prisoner than seven additional years.

32(4) The board may, in its discretion, after considering the views
33and interests of the victim and the district attorney of the county
34in which the offense was committed, advance a hearing set pursuant
35to paragraph (3) to an earlier date, when a change in circumstances
36or new information establishes a reasonable likelihood that
37consideration of the public and victim’s safety does not require
38the additional period of incarceration of the prisoner provided for
39in paragraph (3).

P4    1(5) Within 10 days of a board action resulting in the
2postponement of a previously set parole date, the board shall send
3the prisoner a written statement setting forth a new date and the
4reason or reasons for that action and shall offer the prisoner an
5opportunity for review of that action.

6(6) Within 10 days of a board action resulting in the rescinding
7of a previously set parole date, the board shall send the prisoner a
8written statement setting forth the reason or reasons for that action,
9and shall schedule the prisoner’s next hearing in accordance with
10paragraph (3).

11(c) The board shall conduct a parole hearing pursuant to this
12section as a de novo hearing. Findings made and conclusions
13reached in a prior parole hearing shall be considered in, but shall
14not be deemed to be binding upon, subsequent parole hearings for
15an inmate, but shall be subject to reconsideration based upon
16changed facts and circumstances. When conducting a hearing, the
17board shall admit the prior recorded or memorialized testimony
18or statement of a victim or witness, upon request of the victim or
19if the victim or witness has died or become unavailable. At each
20hearing the board shall determine the appropriate action to be taken
21based on the criteria set forth in subdivision (b) of Section 3041.

22(d) (1) An inmate may request that the board exercise its
23discretion to advance a hearing set pursuant to paragraph (3) of
24subdivision (b) to an earlier date, by submitting a written request
25to the board, which shall set forth the change in circumstances or
26new information that establishes a reasonable likelihood that
27consideration of the public safety does not require the additional
28period of incarceration of the inmate. The board shall provide
29notice of the request to the district attorney and the victim, if the
30victim has previously requested notification of all board actions,
31no less than 30 days before the board may grant the inmate’s
32request. Notice shall be satisfied by mailing copies of the inmate’s
33request to the office of the district attorney and, if applicable, to
34the last address provided by the victim to the Office of Victim and
35Survivor Rights and Services.

36(2) The board shall have sole jurisdiction, after considering the
37views and interests of the district attorney of the county in which
38the offense was committed, or his or her representative, and the
39victim to determine whether to grant or deny a written request
40made pursuant to paragraph (1), and its decision shall be subject
P5    1to review by a court or magistrate only for a manifest abuse of
2discretion by the board. The board shall have the power to
3summarily deny a request that does not comply withbegin delete the provisions
4ofend delete
this subdivision or that does not set forth a change in
5circumstances or new information as required in paragraph (1) that
6in the judgment of the board is sufficient to justify the action
7described in paragraph (4) of subdivision (b).

8(3) An inmate may make only one written request as provided
9in paragraph (1) during each three-year period. Following either
10a summary denial of a request made pursuant to paragraph (1), or
11the decision of the board after a hearing described in subdivision
12(a) to not set a parole date, the inmate shall not be entitled to submit
13another request for a hearing pursuant to subdivision (a) until a
14three-year period of time has elapsed from the summary denial or
15decision of the board.

16begin insert

begin insertSEC. 1.5.end insert  

end insert

begin insertSection 3041.5 of the end insertbegin insertPenal Codeend insertbegin insert is amended to
17read:end insert

18

3041.5.  

(a) At all hearings for the purpose of reviewingbegin delete a
19prisoner’send delete
begin insert an inmate’send insert parole suitability, or the setting, postponing,
20or rescinding ofbegin delete parole dates,end deletebegin insert parole,end insert with the exception of en banc
21review of tie votes, the following shall apply:

22(1) At least 10 daysbegin delete prior to anyend deletebegin insert before aend insert hearing by the Board
23of Parole Hearings, thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert shall be permitted to review begin delete24his or herend delete begin insert theend insert filebegin delete whichend deletebegin insert thatend insert will be examined by the board and
25shall have the opportunity to enter a written response to any
26material contained in the file.

27(2) Thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert shall be permitted to be present, to ask
28and answer questions, and to speak on his or her own behalf.
29Neither thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert nor the attorney for thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert
30 shall be entitled to ask questions ofbegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert person appearing at the
31hearing pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 3043.

32(3) Unless legal counsel is required bybegin delete some other provision ofend delete
33begin insert anotherend insert law, a person designated by the Department of Corrections
34and Rehabilitation shall be present to ensure that all facts relevant
35to the decisionbegin delete beend deletebegin insert areend insert presented, including, if necessary,
36contradictory assertions as to matters of fact that have not been
37resolved by departmental or other procedures.

38(4) Thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert andbegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert person described in
39subdivision (b) of Section 3043 shall be permitted to request and
40receive a stenographic record of all proceedings.

P6    1(5) If the hearing is for the purpose of postponing or rescinding
2begin delete of parole dates, the prisonerend deletebegin insert parole, the inmateend insert shall havebegin insert theend insert rights
3set forth in paragraphs (3) and (4) of subdivision (c) of Section
42932.

5(6) The board shall set a date to reconsider whether an inmate
6should be released on parole that ensures a meaningful
7consideration of whether the inmate is suitable for release on
8parole.

9(b) (1) Within 10 days followingbegin delete any meeting where a parole
10date has been set,end delete
begin insert aend insertbegin insert decision granting parole,end insert the board shall send
11thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert a written statement setting forthbegin delete his or her
12parole date,end delete
begin insert end insertbegin insertthe reason or reasons for granting parole,end insert the
13conditions he or she must meet in order to bebegin delete released on the date
14set,end delete
begin insert released,end insert and the consequences of failure to meet those
15conditions.

16(2) Within 20 days followingbegin delete any meeting where a parole date
17has not been set,end delete
begin insert a decision denying parole,end insert the board shall send
18the begin deleteprisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert a written statement setting forth the reason or
19reasons forbegin delete refusal to set a parole date,end deletebegin insert denying parole,end insert and suggest
20activities in which he or she might participate that will benefit him
21or her while he or she is incarcerated.

22(3) The board shall schedule the next hearing, after considering
23the views and interests of the victim, as follows:

24(A) Fifteen years afterbegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert hearing at which parole is denied,
25unless the board finds by clear and convincing evidence that the
26criteria relevant to thebegin delete setting of parole release dates enumerated
27in subdivision (a) of Section 3041end delete
begin insert end insertbegin insertdecision denying paroleend insert are
28such that consideration of the public and victim’s safety does not
29require a more lengthy period of incarceration for thebegin delete prisonerend delete
30begin insert inmateend insert than 10 additional years.

31(B) Ten years afterbegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert hearing at which parole is denied,
32unless the board finds by clear and convincing evidence that the
33criteria relevant to thebegin delete setting of parole release dates enumerated
34in subdivision (a) of Section 3041end delete
begin insert decision denying paroleend insert are
35such that consideration of the public and victim’s safety does not
36require a more lengthy period of incarceration for thebegin delete prisonerend delete
37begin insert inmateend insert than seven additional years.

38(C) Three years, five years, or seven years afterbegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert hearing
39at which parole is denied, because the criteria relevant to thebegin delete setting
40of parole release dates enumerated in subdivision (a) of Section
P7    13041end delete
begin insert decision denying paroleend insert are such that consideration of the
2public and victim’s safety requires a more lengthy period of
3incarceration for thebegin delete prisoner,end deletebegin insert inmate,end insert but does not require a more
4lengthy period of incarceration for thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert than seven
5additional years.

6(4) The boardbegin delete mayend deletebegin insert may,end insert in its discretion, after considering the
7views and interests of thebegin delete victim,end deletebegin insert end insertbegin insertvictim and the district attorney
8of the county in which the offense was committed,end insert
advance a
9hearing set pursuant to paragraph (3) to an earlier date, when a
10change in circumstances or new information establishes a
11reasonable likelihood that consideration of the public and victim’s
12safety does not require the additional period of incarceration of
13the prisoner providedbegin insert forend insert in paragraph (3).

begin delete

14(5) Within 10 days of any board action resulting in the
15postponement of a previously set parole date, the board shall send
16the prisoner a written statement setting forth a new date and the
17reason or reasons for that action and shall offer the prisoner an
18opportunity for review of that action.

end delete
begin delete

19(6)

end delete

20begin insert(end insertbegin insert5)end insert Within 10 days ofbegin delete anyend deletebegin insert aend insert board action resulting in the
21rescinding ofbegin delete a previously set parole date,end deletebegin insert parole,end insert the board shall
22send thebegin delete prisonerend deletebegin insert inmateend insert a written statement setting forth the reason
23or reasons for that action, and shall schedule thebegin delete prisoner’send deletebegin insert inmate’send insert
24 next hearing in accordance with paragraph (3).

25(c) The board shall conduct a parole hearing pursuant to this
26section as a de novo hearing. Findings made and conclusions
27reached in a prior parole hearing shall be consideredbegin delete inend deletebegin insert in,end insert but shall
28not be deemed to be bindingbegin delete uponend deletebegin insert upon,end insert subsequent parole hearings
29for an inmate, but shall be subject to reconsideration based upon
30changed facts and circumstances. When conducting a hearing, the
31board shall admit the prior recorded or memorialized testimony
32or statement of a victim or witness, upon request of the victim or
33if the victim or witness has died or become unavailable. At each
34hearing the board shall determine the appropriate action to be taken
35based on the criteria set forth inbegin delete paragraph (3) of subdivision (a)end delete
36begin insert subdivision (b)end insert of Section 3041.

37(d) (1) An inmate may request that the board exercise its
38discretion to advance a hearing set pursuant to paragraph (3) of
39subdivision (b) to an earlier date, by submitting a written request
40to the board,begin delete with notice, upon request, and a copy to the victimend delete
P8    1 which shall set forth the change in circumstances or new
2information that establishes a reasonable likelihood that
3consideration of the public safety does not require the additional
4period of incarceration of the inmate.begin insert The board shall provide
5notice of the request to the district attorney and the victim, if the
6victim has previously requested notification of all board actions,
7no less than 30 days before the board may grant the inmate’s
8request. Notice shall be satisfied by mailing copies of the inmate’s
9request to the office of the district attorney and, if applicable, to
10the last address provided by the victim to the Office of Victim and
11Survivor Rights and Services.end insert

12(2) The board shall have sole jurisdiction, after considering the
13views and interests of thebegin insert district attorney of the county in which
14the offense was committed, or his or her representative, and theend insert

15 victim to determine whether to grant or deny a written request
16made pursuant to paragraph (1), and its decision shall be subject
17to review by a court or magistrate only for a manifest abuse of
18discretion by the board. The board shall have the power to
19summarily deny a request that does not comply withbegin delete the provisions
20ofend delete
this subdivision or that does not set forth a change in
21circumstances or new information as required in paragraph (1) that
22in the judgment of the board is sufficient to justify the action
23described in paragraph (4) of subdivision (b).

24(3) An inmate may make only one written request as provided
25in paragraph (1) during each three-year period. Following either
26a summary denial of a request made pursuant to paragraph (1), or
27the decision of the board after a hearing described in subdivision
28(a) tobegin delete not set a parole date,end deletebegin insert deny parole,end insert the inmate shall not be
29entitled to submit another request for a hearing pursuant to
30subdivision (a) until a three-year period of time has elapsed from
31the summary denial or decision of the board.

32begin insert

begin insertSEC. 2.end insert  

end insert
begin insert

Section 1.5 of this bill incorporates amendments to
33Section 3041.5 of the Penal Code proposed by both this bill and
34Senate Bill 230. It shall only become operative if (1) both bills are
35enacted and become effective on or before January 1, 2016, (2)
36each bill amends Section 3041.5 of the Penal Code, and (3) this
37bill is enacted after Senate Bill 230, in which case Section 1 of this
38bill shall not become operative.

end insert


O

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