BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                          AB 853  
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AB 853 (Hertzberg)
As Amended September 5, 1997
2/3 vote.  Urgency.  Appropriation

  ASSEMBLY: 73-4  (June 5, 1997)  SENATE:  29-8  (September 8, 1997)   

Original Committee Reference:   PUB. S.  

  SUMMARY  :  Authorizes the establishment of the Community Law  
Enforcement and Recovery (CLEAR) Demonstration Project to combat  
gangs in Los Angeles County.  
  The Senate amendments  :  

1)  Appropriate $1.2 million.  State that the $1.2 million should  
be disbursed as follows:  $200,000 to the Gang Intervention  
Coordinator; $248,000 to the Los Angeles Police Department;  
$141,000 to the Los Angeles City Attorney; $300,000 to the Los  
Angeles County Sheriff; $169,000 to the Los Angeles County  
District Attorney; and, $142,000 to the Los Angeles County  
Probation Department.

2)  Add an urgency clause.

3)  State that the Board of Corrections (BOC) shall choose the  
entity that evaluates the CLEAR project, through a competitive  
bidding process.

4)  State that the CLEAR project evaluation shall be submitted two  
years from the date the funds are appropriated, or six months  
after the project ends, whichever is earlier.

5)  State that the evaluation must be submitted to specified  
chairpersons in the Legislature.

6)  Change the type of information that must be included in the  

7)  State that the CLEAR project will remain operative until no  
later than two years from the date funds are appropriated.

8)  Provide that the CLEAR project shall expire on January 1,  
2001, unless the Legislature extends it.

  EXISTING LAW  contains findings that gang activity is a serious and  
growing problem and that "Los Angeles currently leads the nation  
in the number of gang members and gang sites, the consumption of  
drugs, the amount of drugs confiscated, drug-related violent  
crimes, and has the greatest number of young people between 6 and  
18 years of age who are 'at risk.'"  


1)  Authorized the City and County of Los Angeles to establish the  
CLEAR Demonstration Project, a multi-agency gang intervention  


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2)  Provided that CLEAR Demonstration Project be administered by  
the City of Los Angeles, under a joint powers agreement with the  
Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, the Los Angeles County  
District Attorney's Office, 
the Los Angeles County Probation Department, the Los Angeles  
Police Department and the Los Angeles City Attorney's Office.

3)  Appropriated $13 million from the General Fund to the BOC for  
specified purposes.

4)  Required that an independent evaluation of the CLEAR  
Demonstration Project be prepared and submitted to the Legislature  
at the end of each fiscal year.  This evaluation included a  
detailed cost-benefit analysis.

  FISCAL EFFECT  :  Appropriates $1.2 million. 

1)  According to the author, "This bill will establish a concerted  
law enforcement attack on the gang problem in Los Angeles.  In  
particular, this bill targets the notorious 18th Street Gang.   
With an estimated 20,000 members in Southern California, the 18th  
Street Gang has extended its reign of terror as far as the San  
Gabriel Valley, Orange County, and to the San Fernando Valley.   
This gang, like a cancer run amok, has moved beyond California's  
borders to states such as Oregon and Utah, as well as to other  

   "AB 853 will expand Los Angeles's existing Community Law  
   Enforcement and Recovery (or CLEAR) Program, by providing $10.1  
   million in state funds to target the 18th Street Gang  
   aggressively.  Under this bill, the Los Angeles District  
   Attorney will appoint a Gang Intervention Coordinator.  This  
   'Gang Czar' will utilize a Mobile Response Team comprised of  
   representatives from the Los Angeles Police Department,  
   Sheriff's Department, Probation Department, District Attorney,  
   and City Attorney.  This team will provide a flexible and  
   coordinated response to gang crime by addressing neighborhood  
   gang activity through the identification, arrest, prosecution,  
   and conviction of gang members.

    "The overall goal of AB 853 is to create an infrastructure  
within Los Angeles law enforcement agencies for suppressing gang  
activity, so that neighborhoods can be reclaimed and resident  
safety restored.  Currently, the 18th Street Gang seriously  
impacts the day-to-day lives of countless innocent people in Los  

   "On average, one Los Angeles county resident is either robbed  
   or assaulted by an 18th Street Gang member every single day.   
   Since 1990, the gang has committed more than 100 homicides in  
   the city of Los Angeles.  These incidents change how innocent  
   people live their daily lives.  People should not have to fear  
   for their safety constantly.  That is simply an unacceptable  


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   way to live.  Through a coordinated law enforcement effort, we  
   can reclaim our lives."
2)  Please see the policy committee analysis for a more  
comprehensive discussion of this bill.

  Analysis prepared by  :  Michael A. Katz / apubs / (916) 445-3268