Bill Text


PDF |Add To My Favorites |Track Bill | print page

SB-991 Court reporters.(2019-2020)

SHARE THIS:share this bill in Facebookshare this bill in Twitter
Date Published: 02/12/2020 09:00 PM
SB991:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill
No. 991


Introduced by Senator Lena Gonzalez

February 12, 2020


An act to amend Section 69951 of, to add and repeal Section 69950.5 to, and to repeal and add Section 69950 of, the Government Code, relating to courts.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 991, as introduced, Lena Gonzalez. Court reporters.
(1) Existing law requires a fee for the transcription for an original ribbon or printed copy of a court transcript to be $0.85 for each 100 words, and for each copy purchased at the same time by the court, party, or other person purchasing the original to be $0.15 for each 100 words. Existing law also requires a fee for the first copy to any court, party, or other person who does not simultaneously purchase the original to be $0.20 for each 100 words, and for each additional copy, purchased at the same time, to be $0.15 for each 100 words.
This bill would increase those fees commencing on July 1, 2021, as specified, including an increase to $1.13 for each 100 words of transcription for original ribbon or printed copy and $0.20 for each copy purchased at the same time by the court, party, or other person purchasing the original. The bill would specifically prohibit a trial court from unilaterally changing its practice and policy as to the number of words or folios on a typical transcript page. The bill would require the Judicial Council, on or before January 1, 2023, to report to the Legislature recommendations to increase uniformity in transcription rate expenditures in California.
(2) Existing law authorizes a court reporter to charge an additional 50% for special daily service for transcription in civil cases.
This bill would delete the reference to civil cases, resulting in an authorization for the reporter to charge an additional 50% for special daily service for transcription in all cases.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) Official court reporters and court reporters pro tempore employed by the courts are currently paid under a dual compensation structure in which the base salary of the court reporter is supplemented by income from preparing required transcripts and providing other required transcription services.
(b) The dual compensation structure protects the state from bearing the full cost of transcript preparation and other transcription services and avoids the resulting consequences of overtime liability related to those services.
(c) The fees for original transcripts prepared by official court reporters and court reporters pro tempore have not been adjusted in 30 years, and fees for copies purchased at the same time as the original transcript have only increased once in 105 years.
(d) In order to ensure full and fair compensation of official court reporters and court reporters pro tempore employed by the court, and in order to attract and retain official court reporters and court reporters pro tempore employed by the courts that have sufficient skills and competence to serve the needs of the justice system, it is imperative that the system of dual compensation provide sufficient payment for transcription services.
(e) Therefore, it is necessary to revise the fees for transcripts prepared by official court reporters and court reporters pro tempore.

SEC. 2.

 Section 69950 of the Government Code is repealed.
69950.

(a)The fee for transcription for original ribbon or printed copy is eighty-five cents ($0.85) for each 100 words, and for each copy purchased at the same time by the court, party, or other person purchasing the original, fifteen cents ($0.15) for each 100 words.

(b)The fee for a first copy to any court, party, or other person who does not simultaneously purchase the original shall be twenty cents ($0.20) for each 100 words, and for each additional copy, purchased at the same time, fifteen cents ($0.15) for each 100 words.

(c)Notwithstanding subdivisions (a) and (b), if a trial court had established transcription fees that were in effect on January 1, 2012, based on an estimate or assumption as to the number of words or folios on a typical transcript page, those transcription fees shall be the transcription fees for proceedings in those trial courts, and the policy or practice for determining transcription fees in those trial courts shall not be unilaterally changed.

SEC. 3.

 Section 69950 is added to the Government Code, to read:

69950.
 (a) Until July 1, 2021, the following fees shall apply:
(1) The fee for transcription for original ribbon or printed copy is eighty-five cents ($0.85) for each 100 words, and for each copy purchased at the same time by the court, party, or other person purchasing the original, fifteen cents ($0.15) for each 100 words.
(2) The fee for a first copy to any court, party, or other person who does not simultaneously purchase the original shall be twenty cents ($0.20) for each 100 words, and for each additional copy, purchased at the same time, fifteen cents ($0.15) for each 100 words.
(b) On and after July 1, 2021, the following fees shall apply:
(1) The fee for transcription for original ribbon or printed copy is one dollar and thirteen cents ($1.13) for each 100 words, and for each copy purchased at the same time by the court, party, or other person purchasing the original, twenty cents ($0.20) for each 100 words.
(2) The fee for a first copy to any court, party, or other person who does not simultaneously purchase the original shall be twenty-six cents ($0.26) for each 100 words, and for each additional copy, purchased at the same time, twenty cents ($0.20) for each 100 words.
(c) A trial court practice and policy as to the number of words or folios on a typical transcript page shall not be unilaterally changed by a trial court.

SEC. 4.

 Section 69950.5 is added to the Government Code, to read:

69950.5.
 (a) On or before January 1, 2023, the Judicial Council shall report to the Legislature recommendations to increase uniformity in transcription rate expenditures in California. The intent of the report shall be to not reduce the rate of pay or overall compensation to reporters or jeopardize collective bargaining agreements. The Judicial Council shall work in collaboration with key stakeholder groups, including the California Court Reporters Association, exclusively recognized employee organizations representing court reporters, and the Court Reporters Board of California.
(b) The report to be submitted pursuant to this section shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795.
(c) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2028, and as of that date is repealed.

SEC. 5.

 Section 69951 of the Government Code is amended to read:

69951.
 For transcription, in civil cases, the reporter may charge an additional 50 percent for special daily copy service.