BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                     SB 880

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          880 (Hall and Glazer)

          As Amended  May 17, 2016

          Majority vote

          SENATE VOTE:  24-14

          |Committee       |Votes|Ayes                  |Noes                |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |Public Safety   |5-1  |Jones-Sawyer, Lopez,  |Lackey              |
          |                |     |Low, Quirk, Santiago  |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |

          SUMMARY:  Redefines what constitutes an assault weapon in order  
          to close the bullet button loophole.  Also requires registration  
          of weapons previously not prohibited, under the new definition.   
          Specifically, this bill:  
          1)Revises the definition of "assault weapon" to mean "a  
            semiautomatic centerfire rifle, or a semiautomatic pistol that  
            does not have a fixed magazine but has any one of those  
            specified attributes." 
          2)Defines "fixed magazine" to mean "an ammunition feeding device  
            contained in, or permanently attached to, a firearm in such a  


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            manner that the device cannot be removed without disassembly  
            of the firearm action." 

          3)Exempts a person who possessed an assault weapon prior to  
            January 1, 2017, if specified requirements are met.

          4)Requires that any person who, from January 1, 2001, to  
            December 31, 2016, lawfully possessed an assault weapon that  
            does not have a fixed magazine, as defined, register the  
            firearm with the Department of Justice (DOJ) before January 1,  

          5)Permits the DOJ to increase the $20 registration fee as long  
            as it does not exceed the reasonable processing costs of the  

          6)Requires registrations to be submitted electronically via the  
            Internet utilizing a public-facing application made available  
            by the DOJ. 

          7)Requires the registration to contain specified information,  
            including, but not limited to, a description of the firearm  
            that identifies it uniquely and specified information about  
            the registrant. 

          8)Permits the DOJ to charge a fee of up to $15 per person for  
            registration through the internet, not to exceed the  
            reasonable processing costs of the department to be paid and  
            deposited, as specified, for purposes of the registration  

          9)Requires the DOJ to adopt regulations for the purpose of  


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            implementing those provisions and would exempt those  
            regulations from the Administrative Procedure Act. 


          EXISTING LAW:  

          1)Contains legislative findings and declarations that the  
            proliferation and use of assault and .50 BMG rifles poses a  
            threat to the health, safety, and security of all citizens of  
          2)States legislative intent to place restrictions on the use of  
            assault weapons and .50 BMG rifles and to establish a  
            registration and permit procedure for their lawful sale and  

          3)Prohibits several categories of assault weapons:

             a)   Specified firearms listed by name and others listed by  
             b)   Semiautomatic centerfire rifles or semiautomatic pistols  
               having the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and  
               also having one of several specified characteristics; 

             c)   Semiautomatic centerfire rifles or semiautomatic pistols  
               with a fixed magazine having the capacity to hold more than  
               10 rounds; 

             d)   Semiautomatic centerfire rifles with an overall length  


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               of less than 30 inches; 

             e)   Semiautomatic shotguns having two specified  

             f)   Semiautomatic shotguns having the capacity to accept a  
               detachable magazine; and,

             g)   Any shotgun with a revolving cylinder.  

          4)Defines a "detachable magazine" as any ammunition feeding  
            device that can be removed readily from the firearm with  
            neither disassembly of the firearm action nor use of a tool  
            being required.  A bullet or ammunition cartridge is  
            considered a tool.  Ammunition feeding device includes any  
            belted or linked ammunition, but does not include clips, en  
            bloc clips, or stripper clips that load cartridges into the  
          5)Bans the manufacture, distribution, transportation,  
            importation, sale, gift or loan of an assault weapon.  

          6)Makes the possession of an assault weapon a criminal offense,  
            subject to certain exceptions.  

          7)Defines a ".50 BMG rifle" as "a center fire rifle that can  
            fire a .50 BMG cartridge and is not already an assault weapon  
            or a machinegun."  

          8)Bans the manufacture, distribution, transportation,  
            importation, sale, gift, loan, or possession of .50 BMG  


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          9)Exempts the DOJ, law enforcement agencies, military forces,  
            and other specified agencies from the prohibition against  
            sales to, purchase by, importation of, or possession of  
            assault weapons or .50 BMG rifles.  

          10)Requires that any person who lawfully possesses an assault  
            weapon prior to the date it was specified as an assault weapon  
            to register the firearm with DOJ, as specified.  

          FISCAL EFFECT:  Unknown.  This bill is keyed non-fiscal by the  
          Legislative Counsel. 

          COMMENTS:  According to the author, "bullet button-equipped  
          semi-automatic weapons have no legitimate use for sport hunters  
          or competitive shooters.  They are designed only to facilitate  
          the maximum destruction of human life.  Such weapons have been  
          used in a number of recent gun attacks including the recent  
          terrorist attack in San Bernardino that left 14 Californians  
          dead and 21 injured.  Too many Californians have died at the  
          hands of these dangerous weapons. 

          "SB 880 will make our communities safer and upholds our  
          commitment to reduce gun violence in California by closing the  
          bullet button loophole in California's Assault Weapons Ban.   
          This bill clarifies the definition of assault weapons and  
          provides the DOJ the authority to bring existing regulations  
          into conformity with the original intent of California's Assault  
          Weapon Ban.  Absent this bill, the assault weapon ban is  
          severely weakened, and these types of military-style firearms  
          will continue to proliferate on our streets and in our  


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