BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    




          Appropriations Committee Fiscal Summary

                                SB 23  (Perata)

Hearing Date:5/27/99            Amended:4/6/99         
Consultant: Lisa Matocq         Policy Vote:Pub Saf 4-0
____________________________________________________________ 

BILL SUMMARY:  SB 23 (1) expands the scope of various  
crimes and sentence enhancements by expanding the  
definition of assault weapons, (2) requires that the "new"  
assault weapons be registered with DOJ within 1 year, as  
specified, and (3) makes related changes.
                         Fiscal Impact (in thousands)
  Major Provisions                       1999-2000         2000-01        2001-02      
  Fund  
Felonies and sentence      Unknown increased costs, in excess of          
General
enhancements                   $150 annually, and potentially significant
                          for incarceration in state prison
Misdemeanors              Unknown increased mandated, nonreim-      Local
                                           bursable costs for county jail and  
probation
DOJ registration and          $ 885               $ 630          unknown        
      Special*
public education                 potentially fully offset by increased fee 
                                           revenues
Courts                    Probably less than $50 annually for                
Special**
                    increased workload  
*Dealers' Record of Sale Account        
**Trial Court Trust Fund                              

STAFF COMMENTS:   SUSPENSE FILE.   Under current law, the  
Roberti-Roos Assault Weapons Control Act of 1989, the sale,  
manufacture, transportation, importing, or lending of  
assault weapons is a felony, punishable by 4, 6 or 8 years  
in state prison. Except as otherwise provided, possession  
is a wobbler, punishable by up to 1 year in county jail or  
in state prison. A sentence enhancement of 10 or 20 years,  
or life applies if a firearm is used in specified crimes.  
The list of assault weapons includes certain semiautomatic  
rifles, pistols, and shotguns.  Persons who lawfully  
possess an assault weapon are required to register with  
DOJ.  This bill:











 expands the scope of various crimes and sentence  
  enhancements by redefining "assault weapon" (e.g. any  
  person  armed with  one of the listed firearms during the  
  commission of a felony is subject to a 3-year  
  enhancement, any person who  uses  a listed firearm during  
  the commission of a felony is subject to a 5, 6 or  
  10-year enhancement, and anyone who commits assault on  
  another person with an assault weapon is subject to a 4,  
  8 or 12-year enhancement) 
 makes it a wobbler, punishable by up to 1 year in county  
  jail or in state prison, to manufacture, import, keep or  
  offer for sale, or give or lend, any detachable  
  large-capacity magazine, as specified,
 requires that the "new" assault weapons be registered  
  with DOJ within 1 year of the effective date of the bill,  
  as specified,
 requires DOJ to include the new assault weapons in its  
  public education campaign,
 exempts certain off-duty and retired law enforcement  
  personnel from the prohibition against possession,  
  purchase, or sale of assault weapons, and makes related  
  changes.

Broadening the scope of the ban on manufacture, sale,  
import, or possession of certain weapons to include  
large-capacity magazines could result in some persons new  
to prison. There were 367 prison admissions during 1997-98  
for violations of the existing ban.  For every 10% of  
prison admissions affected by this bill, increased  
incarceration costs are $758,000 annually, beginning  
2000-01; $392,000 assuming 50% good-time credits.

Expanding the definition of assault weapons could also  
result in some persons new to state prison and some persons  
serving additional time.  There were 5 prison admissions  
during 1997-98 for manufacture, sale or import of assault  
weapons, and 11 for possession.  For every 10% of prison  
admissions impacted by this bill, increased incarceration  
costs are about $42,000 beginning 1999-2000, increasing by  
at least $21,000 annually in subsequent years, until  
reaching about $ 147,000.  With regard to the expanded  
sentence enhancements, during 1997-98, 5 persons received  
the 3-year enhancement "armed with" offense, 17 persons  
received the 5, 6 or 10-year enhancement for the "use"  
offense, and 1 person received the 4, 8 or 12-year  
enhancement for assault on another with an assault weapon.   










For every 10% of sentence enhancements affected by this  
bill, increased incarceration costs are $ 63,000 annually  
beginning as early as 2000-01, increasing to about $189,000  
annually in subsequent years.

Overall, there are unknown increased incarceration costs,  
in excess of $150,000 annually, and potentially significant  
in out years as longer sentences take effect.  For every  
inmate year, incarceration costs are about $21,000.  It  
would take only 8 inmate years to exceed annual  
incarceration costs of $150,000.  In addition, according to  
DOJ, there are estimated increased costs of $885,000 in the  
first year, and $630,000 in the second year for the public  
education and registration portions of the bill.  DOJ  
believes these costs are fully offset by fee revenues  
(staff notes the bill does specify that any costs incurred  
by DOJ for the public education campaign that cannot be  
absorbed by the department shall be funded from the DROS  
account, upon appropriation by the Legislature). 

AB 2560 (Perata) of 1998 was nearly identical to this bill  
and was vetoed by the Governor.  In his veto message, the  
Governor expressed concerns over the definition of assault  
weapons.  The definition has been changed in this bill.