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AB-386 Legal services for deported veterans.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 05/04/2017 09:00 PM
AB386:v94#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  May 04, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 20, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 06, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 29, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  March 20, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 386


Introduced by Assembly Member Gonzalez Fletcher
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Reyes and Santiago)

February 09, 2017


An act to add the heading of Article 1 (commencing with Section 13300) to Chapter 5.6 of Part 3 of Division 9 of, and to add Article 2 (commencing with Section 13400) to Chapter 5.6 of Part 3 of Division 9 of, the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to immigrants, and making an appropriation therefor, and declaring the urgency thereof, to take effect immediately. therefor.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 386, as amended, Gonzalez Fletcher. Legal services for deported veterans.
Existing law requires the State Department of Social Services, subject to the availability of funding, to contract with qualified nonprofit legal services organizations to provide legal services to unaccompanied, undocumented minors, as defined, who are transferred to the care and custody of the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement and who are present in this state. Existing law requires that the contracts meet certain conditions.
This bill would would, subject to the availability of funding in the annual Budget Act, require the department to either contract with a qualified nonprofit legal services organization, or contract with a nonprofit agency to administer funding to nonprofit legal services organization subcontractors, to provide legal services to deported veterans, as defined. The bill would also authorize the department to include postconviction relief services to deported veterans in the contract. The bill would require the entities providing services pursuant to these contracts to meet specified conditions. The bill would establish the Veteran Reentry Assistance Fund, a continuously appropriated fund, to accept donations from private foundations and other philanthropic entities for the purpose of expanding the number of individuals who may be provided legal services pursuant to these provisions. By establishing a new continuously appropriated fund, this bill would make an appropriation. The bill would appropriate an unspecified sum from the General Fund to the department for the purpose of implementing these provisions.

This bill would declare that it is to take effect immediately as an urgency statute.

Vote: TWO_THIRDSMAJORITY   Appropriation: YES   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 The heading of Article 1 (commencing with Section 13300) is added to Chapter 5.6 of Part 3 of Division 9 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, to read:
Article  1. Immigration Services

SEC. 2.

 Article 2 (commencing with Section 13400) is added to Chapter 5.6 of Part 3 of Division 9 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, to read:
Article  2. Legal Services For Deported Veterans

13400.
 For purposes of this article, the following definitions apply:
(a) “Department” means the State Department of Social Services.
(b) “Deported veteran” means a veteran who was deported from the United States pursuant to Section 237 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. Sec. 1227) and is ineligible for admission pursuant to Section 212 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. Sec. 1182).
(c) “Veteran” means an individual who has received an honorable discharge from the Armed Forces of the United States.

13402.
 (a) The Subject to the availability of funding in the annual Budget Act, the department shall either contract directly with one qualified nonprofit legal services organization, or contract with a nonprofit agency to administer funding to nonprofit legal services organization subcontractors, to provide legal services to deported veterans for assistance with the reentry process.
(b) For purposes of this article, a deported veteran is eligible to receive the legal services described in subdivision (a) if the veteran provides acceptable evidence of current or prior California residency, including, but not limited to, any of the following:
(1) Graduation from a high school or attaining the equivalent to high school graduation in California.
(2) Attendance at a community college or a university in California.
(3) Fulfilling all or part of the United States Armed Forces basic training in California.
(4) Being stationed in California while serving as an active duty member of the United States Armed Forces.
(5) Established California residency prior to being deported.
(6) Employment in California.
(7) A spouse, child, or immediate family member is currently living in California.
(8) One or more of the deported veteran’s children is enrolled in a school in California.
(9) One or more of the deported veteran’s children was born in California.

13406.
 (a) The contract awarded pursuant to Section 13402 shall be executed either with a nonprofit agency that will administer the contract through nonprofit legal services organization subcontractors that meet both of the following requirements or directly with a nonprofit legal services organization that meets both of the following requirements:
(1) Have at least one of the following:
(A) A minimum of three years of experience in representing individuals in applications relating to the reentry process.
(B) A minimum of three years of experience as an organization providing legal assistance with the reentry process.
(C) Experience as a federal subcontractor for immigration representation.
(D) Experience working with or under the supervision of an organization, including a legal training or a technical assistance organization, that has significant experience in applications relating to the reentry process.
(2) Are accredited by the Board of Immigration Appeals under the United States Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review or meet the requirements to receive funding from the Trust Fund Program administered by the State Bar of California.
(b) The department may include the provision of postconviction relief services to deported veterans in the contract awarded pursuant to Section 13402.
(c) The department may include case coordination and placement services in the contract awarded pursuant to Section 13402 to ensure that all individuals eligible for representation receive that representation in a timely fashion.

13408.
 The Veteran Reentry Assistance Fund is hereby established in the State Treasury to accept donations from private foundations and other philanthropic entities for the purpose of expanding the number of individuals who may be provided legal services through contracts entered into by the department pursuant to this article. Notwithstanding Section 13340 of the Government Code, all moneys in the fund are continuously appropriated to the department without regard to fiscal year for purposes of Section 13402.

SEC. 3.

The sum of ____ dollars ($____) is hereby appropriated from the General Fund to the State Department of Social Services for the purposes of implementing this act.

SEC. 4.

This act is an urgency statute necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety within the meaning of Article IV of the California Constitution and shall go into immediate effect. The facts constituting the necessity are:

In order to expedite the provision of legal services to veterans who have been deported and are currently unable to return to their homes in the United States, it is necessary that this bill take effect immediately.