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SB-776 Corrections: veterans’ benefits.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 10/09/2017 09:00 PM
SB776:v92#DOCUMENT

Senate Bill No. 776
CHAPTER 599

An act to add Section 715 to the Military and Veterans Code, and to add Section 2066 to the Penal Code, relating to corrections.

[ Approved by Governor  October 08, 2017. Filed with Secretary of State  October 08, 2017. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 776, Newman. Corrections: veterans’ benefits.
Existing law establishes the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, and charges it with certain duties and powers, including, among others, the operation of state prisons. Existing law establishes the Department of Veterans Affairs, which is responsible for administering various programs and services for the benefit of veterans.
This bill would require the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide one employee for every 5 state prisons, who is trained and accredited by the department, to assist incarcerated veterans in applying for and receiving any federal or other veterans’ benefits for which they or their families may be eligible. The bill would require the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to give the Department of Veterans Affairs’ employees access to the hardware, software, and those computer networks as are reasonably necessary to perform their duties while at the prison, while taking all necessary safety precautions. The bill would also require the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to cooperate and collaborate to ensure that the Department of Veterans Affairs’ employees have the greatest access and effectiveness practicable, while taking all necessary safety precautions, in order to assist veterans incarcerated within the state prisons.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 715 is added to the Military and Veterans Code, to read:

715.
 (a) The department shall provide one employee, trained and accredited by the department, for every five state prisons to assist incarcerated veterans in applying for and receiving any federal or other veterans’ benefits for which the veterans or their families may be eligible.
(b) The department shall cooperate and collaborate with the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to ensure that department employees have the greatest access and effectiveness practicable, while taking all necessary safety precautions, in order to assist veterans incarcerated within the state prisons.

SEC. 2.

 Section 2066 is added to the Penal Code, to read:

2066.
 (a) Pursuant to Section 715 of the Military and Veterans Code, the Department of Veterans Affairs shall provide one employee, trained and accredited by the Department of Veterans Affairs, for every five state prisons to assist incarcerated veterans in applying for and receiving any federal or other veterans’ benefits for which they or their families may be eligible.
(b) The department shall give a Department of Veterans Affairs’ employee described in subdivision (a) access to the hardware, software, and those computer networks as are reasonably necessary to perform his or her duties while at the prison, while taking all necessary safety precautions.
(c) The department shall cooperate and collaborate with the Department of Veterans Affairs to ensure that a Department of Veterans Affairs’ employee described in subdivision (a) has the greatest access and effectiveness practicable, while taking all necessary safety precautions, in order to assist veterans incarcerated within the state prisons.