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AB-2089 Volunteer firefighters: background checks.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/26/2018 09:00 PM
AB2089:v97#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 26, 2018
Amended  IN  Assembly  February 26, 2018

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 2089


Introduced by Assembly Member Mathis

February 07, 2018


An act to add Sections 13873.5 and 14834 to the Health and Safety Code, relating to fire protection.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2089, as amended, Mathis. Volunteer firefighters: background checks.
The Fire Protection District Law of 1987 provides for the formation and administration of fire protection districts. Under that law, district employees include volunteer firefighters.
Other existing law provides for the organization of fire companies in unincorporated towns by filing a certificate with the Fire and Rescue Operational Area Coordinator in the same county, or other county agency as designated by ordinance of the county board of supervisors. Under existing law, a fire company is staffed by officers and volunteer firefighters. Existing law authorizes counties and cities to regulate the formation and continued existence of fire companies within their jurisdiction.
This bill would amend those provisions to require authorize the chief of a fire protection district or a fire company to conduct background checks on applicants for volunteer firefighter status with the district or fire company, as prescribed, and and, if such a background check is conducted, would require the chief to identify an applicant who is determined by such a background check to be a registered sex offender or to have committed or been convicted of specific offenses. By imposing new duties on local officials, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.

This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YESNO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 13873.5 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:

13873.5.
 (a) The chief of a fire protection district shall may conduct a background check on each applicant for volunteer firefighter status with the district in accordance with this section. The If a background check is conducted, the district shall identify an applicant who is determined by a background check pursuant to this section to be a registered sex offender or to have committed a felony or have been convicted of murder or arson.
(b) (1) Prior to hiring an applicant for volunteer firefighter status with the district, the chief shall may electronically submit to the Department of Justice fingerprint images and related information required by the Department of Justice on the applicant for the purposes of obtaining information as to the existence and content of a record of state or federal convictions and state or federal arrests and also information as to the existence and content of a record of state or federal arrests for which the Department of Justice establishes that the person is free on bail or on his or her own recognizance pending trial or appeal, as provided pursuant to subdivision (p) of Section 11105 of the Penal Code.
(2) When received, the Department of Justice shall forward to the Federal Bureau of Investigation requests for federal summary criminal history information received pursuant to this subdivision. The Department of Justice shall review the information returned from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and compile and electronically disseminate a response to the chief, as provided pursuant to Section 11105 of the Penal Code.
(3) The Department of Justice shall electronically provide the response to the chief.
(c) The chief shall may request the Department of Justice to provide subsequent arrest notification service, as provided pursuant to Section 11105.2 of the Penal Code, for persons described in subdivision (b).
(d) The Department of Justice shall charge a fee sufficient to cover the cost of processing the request requests described in this section.

SEC. 2.

 Section 14834 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:

14834.
 (a) The chief of a fire company shall may conduct a background check on each applicant for volunteer firefighter status with the fire company in accordance with this section. The If a background check is conducted, the fire company shall identify an applicant who is determined by a background check pursuant to this section to be a registered sex offender or to have committed a felony or have been convicted of murder or arson.
(b) (1) Prior to hiring an applicant for volunteer firefighter status with the fire company, the chief shall may electronically submit to the Department of Justice fingerprint images and related information required by the Department of Justice on the applicant for the purposes of obtaining information as to the existence and content of a record of state or federal convictions and state or federal arrests and also information as to the existence and content of a record of state or federal arrests for which the Department of Justice establishes that the person is free on bail or on his or her own recognizance pending trial or appeal, as provided pursuant to subdivision (p) of Section 11105 of the Penal Code.
(2) When received, the Department of Justice shall forward to the Federal Bureau of Investigation requests for federal summary criminal history information received pursuant to this subdivision. The Department of Justice shall review the information returned from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and compile and electronically disseminate a response to the chief, as provided pursuant to Section 11105 of the Penal Code.
(3) The Department of Justice shall electronically provide the response to the chief.
(c) The chief shall may request the Department of Justice to provide subsequent arrest notification service, as provided pursuant to Section 11105.2 of the Penal Code, for persons described in subdivision (b).
(d) The Department of Justice shall charge a fee sufficient to cover the cost of processing the request requests described in this section.

SEC. 3.

If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.