By Ruby Chavez
STATE CAPITOL – The California Legislative Black Caucus hasn’t given up on a measure to decertify bad cops.
After the bill to decertify peace officers who engage in serious misconduct ran up against the legislative deadlines last week, the caucus pledged to pursue the measure in the new year.
Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber, Ph.D. (D-San Diego) and Chair of the CLBC, explained she was extremely disappointed when SB 731 was held, and not heard on the Assembly floor. The statutory deadline was by midnight on Aug. 31.
Assemblymember Weber explained that “SB 731 has been a product of an incredible amount of work on the part of the author and sponsors,” but she also added, “However, I know very well that it sometimes takes more than one try to get a challenging bill passed and I am not discouraged.”
She thanked Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) and Senate Pro Tem Toni Atkins for committing to work with the caucus to craft an effective policy for the next legislature session. They said they are determined to pass the bill that would not allow officers who have serious misconduct back to work.
Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon said, “ I am personally in support of SB 731, and I look forward to working with CLBC and colleagues in the Senate next year to get this legislation into a form that we can send to the Governor and enact into law.” He said the goal is to get California on the same page as 45 other states.
The author of this bill, Senate pro Tem Toni Atkins, said, “I’m appreciative of the support from leadership in both houses for SB 731. This bill is a critical measure to bring forth police accountability and transparency. Thanks for listening to the voices of thousands of diverse Californians demanding change and passage of SB 731.”
SB 731 is designed to remove the ability of officers to return to work after being fired or disciplined for major misconduct. Forty-five other states already have legislation similar to SB 731.
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