2015 Legislative Session

This is the first of a series of articles that will explain the process that faces your Legislative Committee in Sacramento. The information is extracted from the official California Legislature website. The process of moving a bill may have other nuances that we will cover in subsequent editions of “The Backup” but this will explain the fundamentals.

Join us in Sacramento!

All CRPOA members are encouraged to join us at ARPOC! Don’t miss out! Download and complete all of your 2015 ARPOC Conference forms online and email or fax them in. Register early and ensure you get the classes you want! Book your hotel room with the DoubleTree call 1-800-222-TREE. Ask for “reservations” and be sure to tell them you are with “CRP”.

Legislation Update: Penal Code Section 26300 Assembly Bill 703

As you all know Assembly Bill 703 became law on January 1, 2014. This bill affords only Level I reserve officers the same CCW protections afforded full-time officers upon retirement. Some departments are extremely slow in implementing this new law under the Penal Code. When AB 703 was winding its way through the legislature last year, Level II officers were removed from these protections in the Assembly Public Safety Committee. The CRPOA’s legislative committee now is planning to re-introduce legislation to include Level II officers.

Officer Safety and California Reserve Peace Officers: The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act and California Assembly Bill 703

We are pleased to present our legal analysis of the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) and California Assembly Bill 703 as set forth in the attached document. The officer safety issues faced by full-time and reserve law enforcement officers on-duty and off-duty are of paramount concern to CRPOA. Our federal and California legislators have enacted laws which enhance the off-duty personal protection of law enforcement officers through LEOSA and now, with AB 703, our retired Level 1 reserve peace officers have the benefit of the same laws afforded their full-time colleagues.

California Reserve Peace Officers and “Legal Status” Under the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004

The California Reserve Peace Officers Association recently became aware of an issue concerning the “legal status” of California reserve peace officers under the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004, as amended (18 U.S. Code Sections 9268 and 926C) [“LEOSA”]. The question came up in the context of an interpretation of LEOSA to the effect that LEOSA requires that a person have law enforcement powers at all times (on-duty and off-duty) in order to be a “qualified law enforcement officer” as defined under LEOSA. That interpretation further asserts that because California reserve peace officers are only “temporary” law enforcement officers, they cannot be “qualified law enforcement officers” under LEOSA. We vehemently disagree with that interpretation and believe it is simply wrong on the facts and the law.

The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act and Its Application to California Reserve Peace Officers

On July 22, 2004, President George W. Bush signed into law the Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act of 2004 (“LEOSA”), originally introduced as H.R. 218 and codified within the provisions of The Gun Control Act of 1968 as Chapter 44 of Title 18 U.S. Code Sections 926B and 926C. This law defines two classes of law enforcement officers, active and “retired,” both of which are exempt from the concealed firearms carry laws of the 50 States (as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and U.S. Possessions 2) provided they meet its requirements and subject to certain exceptions. On October 10, 2010, President Barack H. Obama signed into law Senate Bill 1132 (S.1132, codified as The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act Improvements Act of 2010 and referred to below as the “Improvements Act”), which, among other things, amended LEOSA by eliminating “retirement” and replacing it with “separation from service” in the definition of “qualified retired law enforcement officer.”