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AB-1562 Fire prevention and suppression: county inmate fire crews.(2011-2012)

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AB1562:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 09, 2012

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2011–2012 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 1562


Introduced  by  Assembly Member Jeffries

January 30, 2012


An act to amend Section 2780 of the Penal Code, and to add Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 4965) to Part 4 of Division 4 of the Public Resources Code, relating to inmate fire crews.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1562, as amended, Jeffries. Fire prevention and suppression: county inmate fire crews.
Existing law declares the existence of the California Conservation Camp program which establishes camps for the purpose of receiving prisoners and wards committed to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Juvenile Facilities, to perform fire prevention, fire control, and other work. Existing law authorizes the various agencies concerned with conservation projects to enter into contracts as may be necessary for these purposes.
This bill would authorize the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to enter into contracts with those counties in which the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection currently operates inmate fire camps to establish county inmate fire crews that would utilize county jail inmates for the purposes of fire prevention and suppression. The bill would require that county jail inmates remain under the constructive custody and control of their respective county correctional facilities, or an agreed-upon multicounty correctional facility, while participating in the inmate fire crew.
The bill would authorize work performed by inmate fire crews to be coordinated with the efforts of conservation camps, provided that the county would remain solely responsible for providing health and medical care to each county inmate participating in the fire crew. The bill would state that its provisions are severable.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 (a) The Legislature finds and declares the following:
(1) The use of California inmate fire crews is recognized as an important rehabilitation opportunity for eligible inmates of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
(2) The partnership and participation of the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection staff, and, in some counties, local fire department staff, in the coordination, operation, and supervision of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation prison inmate rehabilitation program is a vital component of the program’s success.
(3) Due to the criminal justice realignment of 2011, many inmates who would have otherwise been eligible to participate in inmate fire crews as state prison inmates will instead serve their sentences in county jails.
(b) Accordingly, it is the intent of the Legislature that, pursuant to the following, counties in which the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection currently operates inmate fire camps be authorized to enter into contracts with the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection in order to continue operations and to utilize inmate fire crew programs as part of their inmate rehabilitation efforts.

SEC. 2.

 Section 2780 of the Penal Code is amended to read:

2780.
 (a) Any department, division, bureau, commission or other agency of the State of California or the federal government may use or cause to be used convicts confined in the state prisons to perform work necessary and proper to be done by them at permanent, temporary, and mobile camps to be established under this article. The secretary may enter into contracts for the purposes of this article.
(b) The Department of Forestry and Fire Protection may enter into contracts with those counties in which the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection currently operates inmate fire camps to establish county inmate fire crews pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 4965) of Part 4 of Division 4 of the Public Resources Code.

SEC. 3.

 Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 4965) is added to Part 4 of Division 4 of the Public Resources Code, to read:
CHAPTER  2. County Inmate Fire Crews

4965.
  The Department of Forestry and Fire Protection may enter into contracts with those counties in which the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection currently operates inmate fire camps to establish county inmate fire crews utilizing county jail inmates for the purposes of fire prevention and suppression.

4967.
 (a) Inmates utilized in county inmate fire crews pursuant to contracts entered into pursuant to Section 4965 remain county jail inmates for all purposes. Inmates utilized in county inmate fire crews shall remain in the constructive custody and control of their respective county correctional facilities, or an agreed-upon multicounty correctional facility, while participating in inmate fire crews.
(b) Subject to subdivision (a), work performed by county inmate fire crews established pursuant to Section 4965 may be coordinated with the efforts of conservation camps established pursuant to Chapter 1 (commencing with Section 4951), provided that the county remains solely responsible for providing health and medical care to each county jail inmate participating in the fire crew.

SEC. 4.

 The provisions of this act are severable. If any provision of this act or its application is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application.