BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                     SB 582


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          SENATE THIRD READING


          SB  
          582 (Hall)


          As Amended  August 17, 2015


          Majority vote


          SENATE VOTE:  38-0


           ------------------------------------------------------------------ 
          |Committee       |Votes|Ayes                  |Noes                |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |----------------+-----+----------------------+--------------------|
          |Judiciary       |10-0 |Mark Stone, Weber,    |                    |
          |                |     |Wagner, Alejo, Chau,  |                    |
          |                |     |Chiu, Gallagher,      |                    |
          |                |     |Cristina Garcia,      |                    |
          |                |     |Maienschein, Thurmond |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
           ------------------------------------------------------------------ 


          SUMMARY:  Allows a property owner to install an electrified  
          security fence on his or her real property that is located in a  
          non-residential zone as long as the fence meets certain  
          specified requirements.  Specifically, this bill:


          1)Defines an electrified security fence as any fence, other than  








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            an electrified fence described in the Food and Agricultural  
            Code Section 17151, that is used to protect and secure  
            commercial property, and is powered by an electrical energizer  
            with the following output characteristics:  a) the impulse  
            repetition rate shall not exceed 1 hertz; and b) the impulse  
            duration shall not exceed 10 milliseconds, or  
            10/10000/seconds.


          2)Requires an electrified security fence to be identified by  
            prominently displayed warning signs that are legible from both  
            sides of the fence and, at a minimum, placed at each gate and  
            access point, at intervals along the fence not exceeding 30  
            feet, and adjacent to any other signs on the fence relating to  
            chemical, radiological, or biological hazards.


          3)Requires, in the event that a local ordinance allows the  
            installation and operation of an electrified security fence,  
            an owner of real property with an electrified security fence  
            to comply with the installation and operation requirements of  
            that local ordinance, as well as the requirements set forth  
            above.



          EXISTING LAW:

          1)States that the Legislature finds and declares that improperly  
            designed and installed electrified fences have caused injuries  
            and in some instances have resulted in the deaths of persons,  
            particularly children, coming into contact with the conductive  
            elements thereof and that in order to prevent further such  
            accidents, it is the intent of the Legislature to provide for  
            the study and development and enforcement of safety standards  
            for electrified fences.  


          2)Provides that "electrified fence" means any fence and  








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            appurtenant devices, including, but not limited to, fences and  
            devices used in animal control, and including, but not limited  
            to, a fence consisting of a single strand of wire supported by  
            posts or other fixtures, which has an electrical charge or is  
            connected to a source of electrical current and which is so  
            designed or placed that a person or animal coming into contact  
            with the conductive element of the fence receives an  
            electrical shock.  


          3)Prohibits the sale or installation of electrified fences in  
            California, unless the electric current is limited and  
            regulated by an electrical controller that meets or exceed the  
            standards or specifications of the National Electrical Code of  
            the National Fire Protection Association, the New Zealand  
            Standards Institute, the Standards Association of Australia,  
            or the Underwriters Laboratories for intermittent type  
            electric fence or electrified fence controllers.  


          4)Provides that cities and counties may regulate the  
            installation and use of electrified fences, as long as local  
            ordinances are consistent with state law.  


          5)Provides that local jurisdictions have the authority to make  
            and enforce ordinances that protect the public health, safety,  
            morals, and general welfare within its boundaries.  


          FISCAL EFFECT:  None



          COMMENTS:  Electrified security fences are designed to protect  
          commercial and industrial property.  These fences are generally  
          constructed of metal with attached wires that run along the  
          width of the fence, carrying pulses of electric current to deter  
          potential trespassers.  Most electrified security fences are  








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          rigged with an alarm system to signal the property owner or the  
          security company when the fence is touched.  These fences are  
          designed to provide a physical and psychological deterrent to  
          potential intruders.  
          Existing law prohibits the sale or installation of electrified  
          fences in California, unless the electrical current is limited  
          and regulated by an electrical controller that meets or exceed  
          the standards or specifications for intermittent type electric  
          fence or electrified fence controllers of the National  
          Electrical Code of the National Fire Protection Association, the  
          New Zealand Standards Institute, the Standards Association of  
          Australia, or Underwriters Laboratories.  Existing law regarding  
          electrified fences is in the Food and Agricultural Code and was  
          clearly written to address electrified fences that are designed  
          to contain livestock, which use a much higher voltage than what  
          is allowed for and used by electrified security fences.   
          Furthermore, the Food and Agricultural Code provisions, last  
          amended in 1979, are so outdated that two of the four standards  
          in the relevant code section are no longer in effect, and the  
          remaining standards are inapplicable to electrified security  
          fences. 


          Some municipalities have their own zoning and permitting  
          ordinances that specifically allow electrified security fences,  
          despite the fact that such ordinances may conflict with the  
          provisions of the Food and Agricultural Code, but many others do  
          not.  As a result, municipalities across the state are unsure  
          what state laws, if any, apply to electrified security fences.  


          This bill establishes standards for the installation and  
          operation of electrified security fences, which outline the  
          zoning, voltage, signage warnings, physical barrier clearance,  
          and access requirements that are appropriate for electrified  
          security fences.  This bill does not impede local jurisdictions'  
          authority to allow, prohibit or restrict the installation and  
          operation of electrified security fences within their  
          boundaries.  However, this bill does require that if a local  








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          ordinance allows the installation and operation of an  
          electrified security fence, the installation and operation must  
          meet the ordinance requirements, as well as the requirements  
          contained in this bill.  Also, if a jurisdiction does not have  
          an ordinance in place to prohibit or limit the installation and  
          operation of an electrified security fence, this bill would  
          allow for the installation and operation of such a fence.  




          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Alison Merrilees / JUD. / (916) 319-2334  FN:  
          0001289