BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                     AB 950


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          CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS


          AB  
          950 (Melendez)


          As Amended  June 30, 2015


          Majority vote


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          |ASSEMBLY:  |77-0  |(April 30,     |SENATE: |39-0  |(July 6, 2015)   |
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          Original Committee Reference:  PUB. S.


          SUMMARY:  Allows a person, who is subject to a gun violence  
          restraining order (GVRO), to transfer his or her firearms or  
          ammunition to a licensed firearms dealer for the duration of the  
          prohibition.  If the firearms or ammunition have been  
          surrendered to a law enforcement agency, this bill would entitle  
          the owner to have them transferred to a licensed firearms  
          dealer.  This bill would additionally provide for the transfer  
          of ammunition to a licensed firearms dealer by any person who is  
          prohibited from owning or possessing ammunition.


          The Senate amendments extend the authority of a local  
          jurisdiction to impose a charge relating to the seizure,  
          impounding, storage or release of a firearm to the seizure,  
          impounding, storage, or release of ammunition.  


          EXISTING LAW:  








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          1)Permits persons who are subject to domestic violence  
            restraining orders to surrender their weapons to licensed  
            firearms dealers for storage during the period they are not  
            permitted to possess firearms.  
          2)States that the provisions of law establishing gun violence  
            restraining orders shall take effect on January 1, 2016. 


          3)Requires, upon issuance of a gun violence restraining order,  
            the court to order the restrained person to surrender to the  
            local law enforcement agency all firearms and ammunition in  
            the restrained person's custody or control, or which the  
            restrained person possesses or owns.  


          4)Allows an immediate family member of a person or a law  
            enforcement officer to file a petition requesting that the  
            court issue an ex parte gun violence restraining order, that  
            expires no later than 21 days from the date of the order,  
            enjoining the subject of the petition from having in his or  
            her custody or control, owning, purchasing, possessing, or  
            receiving a firearm or ammunition.  


          5)States that the court, before issuing an ex parte gun violence  
            restraining order, shall examine on oath, the petitioner and  
            any witness the petitioner may produce, or in lieu of  
            examining the petitioner and any witness the petitioner may  
            produce, the court may require the petitioner and any witness  
            to submit a written affidavit signed under oath.  


          6)Requires a showing that the subject of the petition poses a  
            significant danger, in the near future, of personal injury to  
            himself or herself, or another by having in his or her custody  
            or control, owning, purchasing, possessing, or receiving a  
            firearm as determined by considering specified factors and  
            that less restrictive alternative have been ineffective, or  
            are inappropriate for the situation, before an ex parte gun  
            violence restraining order may be issued. 








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          7)Specifies in determining whether grounds for a gun violence  
            restraining order exist, the court shall consider all evidence  
            of the following:


             a)   A recent threat of violence or act of violence by the  
               subject of the petition directed toward another;
             b)   A recent threat of violence or act of violence by the  
               subject of the petition directed toward himself or herself;


             c)   A violation of an emergency protective order that is in  
               effect at the time the court is considering the petition;


             d)   A recent violation of an unexpired protective order;


             e)   A conviction for any specified offense resulting in  
               firearm possession restrictions; or,


             f)   A pattern of violent acts or violent threats within the  
               past 12 months, including, but not limited to, threats of  
               violence or acts of violence by the subject of the petition  
               directed toward himself, herself, or another.  


          8)States that an ex parte gun violence restraining order shall  
            be personally served on the restrained person by a law  
            enforcement officer, or any person who is at least 18 years of  
            age and not a party to the action, if the restrained person  
            can reasonably be located.  When serving a gun violence  
            restraining order, a law enforcement officer shall inform the  
            restrained person of the hearing that will be scheduled to  
            determine whether to issue a gun violence restraining order.  
          9)Requires, within 21 days from the date an ex parte gun  
            violence restraining order was issued, before the court that  
            issued the order or another court in the same jurisdiction,  
            the court to hold a hearing to determine if a gun violence  








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            restraining order should be issued.  


          10)Allows an immediate family member of a person or a law  
            enforcement officer to request a court, after notice and a  
            hearing, to issue a gun violence restraining order enjoining  
            the subject of the petition from having in his or her custody  
            or control, owning, purchasing, possessing, or receiving a  
            firearm or ammunition for a period of one year.  


          11)States at the hearing, the petitioner shall have the burden  
            of proving, by clear and convincing evidence, that both of the  
            following are true:


             a)   The subject of the petition, or a person subject to an  
               ex parte gun violence restraining order, as applicable,  
               poses a significant danger of personal injury to himself or  
               herself, or another by having in his or her custody or  
               control, owning, purchasing, possessing, or receiving a  
               firearm or ammunition; and,
             b)   A gun violence restraining order is necessary to prevent  
               personal injury to the subject of the petition, or the  
               person subject to an ex parte gun violence restraining  
               order, as applicable, or another because less restrictive  
               alternatives either have been tried and found to be  
               ineffective, or are inadequate or inappropriate for the  
               circumstances.  


          12)Provides if the court finds that there is clear and  
            convincing evidence to issue a gun violence restraining order,  
            the court shall issue a gun violence restraining order that  
            prohibits the subject of the petition from having in his or  
            her custody or control, owning, purchasing, possessing, or  
            receiving, or attempting to purchase or receive, a firearm or  
            ammunition.  If the court finds that there is not clear and  
            convincing evidence to support the issuance of a gun violence  
            restraining order, the court shall dissolve any temporary  
            emergency or ex parte gun violence restraining order then in  
            effect.  








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          13)Requires the court to inform the restrained person that he or  
            she is entitled to one hearing to request a termination of the  
            gun violence restraining order and provide the restrained  
            person with a form to request a hearing.  


          14)States that it is a misdemeanor offense for every person who  
            files a petition for an ex parte gun violence restraining  
            order or a gun violence restraining order issued after notice  
            and a hearing knowing the information in the petition to be  
            false or with the intent to harass.  


          15)Provides that it is a misdemeanor offense for every person  
            who owns or possesses a firearm or ammunition with knowledge  
            that he or she is prohibited from doing so by a gun violence  
            restraining order and he or she shall be prohibited from  
            having in his or her custody or control, owning, purchasing,  
            possessing, or receiving, or attempting to purchase or  
            receive, a firearm or ammunition for a five-year period, to  
            commence upon the expiration of the existing gun violence  
            restraining order.


          AS PASSED BY THE ASSEMBLY, this bill allowed a person, who is  
          subject to a GVRO, to transfer his or her firearms or ammunition  
          to a licensed firearms dealer for the duration of the  
          prohibition.  If the firearms or ammunition have been  
          surrendered to a law enforcement agency, this bill would entitle  
          the owner to have them transferred to a licensed firearms  
          dealer.  This bill would additionally provide for the transfer  
          of ammunition to a licensed firearms dealer by any person who is  
          prohibited from owning or possessing ammunition.


          FISCAL EFFECT:  According to the Senate Appropriations  
          Committee: 


          1)Non-reimbursable local costs associated with requirements on  
            local law enforcement agencies relating to the transfer of  
            firearms to licensed firearms dealers, as existing law  








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            authorizes local agencies to impose a fee equal to its  
            administrative costs relating to the seizure, impounding,  
            storage, or transfer of a firearm to a licensed firearms  
            dealer.


          2)Potential state-reimbursable costs (General Fund) to local law  
            enforcement agencies related to the transfer of ammunition to  
            licensed firearms dealers, as existing law does not authorize  
            local agencies to impose a fee to cover its administrative  
            costs related to the transfer of ammunition to a licensed  
            firearms dealer.  Costs would be dependent on the number of  
            persons requesting transfer and the volume of ammunition to be  
            transferred, which is unknown, although it is assumed persons  
            requesting transfer would be those owners of sizeable amounts  
            of ammunition.


          3)Minor, absorbable workload impact to the Department of Justice  
            (DOJ) related to the notification to DOJ by licensed firearms  
            dealers of the date ammunition is taken into possession. 


          Minor one-time costs of less than $10,000 (General Fund (Trial  
          Court Trust Fund)) to the Judicial Council to modify the GVRO  
          form.


          COMMENTS:  According to the author, "This measure will ensure  
          the safety of the public without unnecessarily infringing upon  
          the rights of individuals.  It will reinstate passed statutes  
          set by AB 539 (Pan), Chapter 739, Statutes of 2013, which  
          created a process to provide an individual who is prohibited  
          from owning or possessing firearms, due to a gun violence  
          restraining order (GVRO), the ability to transfer their firearms  
          to a federal firearm licensed (FFL) dealer for the duration of  
          the restraining order.  Gun violence restraining orders are  
          extremely serious and reflect the gravity of the situation.  As  
          long as the firearm and ammunition is not in the possession of  
          the individual and is not accessible, the intent of the GVRO is  
          being carried out."









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          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Gabriel Caswell / PUB. S. / (916) 319-3744  FN:  
          0001117