The state Assembly on Tuesday sent a bill to Gov. Jerry Brown that seeks to capture a broader picture of young Latinos in the juvenile justice system.
AB 1998, authored by Assemblywoman Nora Campos (D-San Jose), would require the Board of State and Community Corrections to prepare guidelines for counties on how to separate data by race and ethnicity on juvenile cases, performance and outcomes.
The bill sailed out of the Assembly with a 73-0 vote.
Children who are in the United States without legal residency and facing complex legal problems should not be forced to represent themselves in court, a state senator said Tuesday in asking for federal intervention.
"Thousands of unaccompanied minors are being forced to act as their own attorneys while navigating a complex legal system that even adults struggle to understand," said state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens).
Lara introduced a legislative resolution Tuesday urging federal officials to provide attorneys for children during asylum or deportation hearings.
For the second straight year, California lawmakers have failed to pass any major legislation regulating police body cameras after a bill that would have allowed families of fallen police officers to block the release of body camera footage showing the officers' deaths stalled in a legislative committee Tuesday.
A bill from Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell) to put surviving relatives in charge of deciding whether videos of officer deaths should be public made it the furthest. Low’s bill narrowly passed the state Senate last week after a lengthy debate between those who believed officer families deserved special protection and opponents who said the bill could block release even when there might be overriding public interest in a video.
A four-mile stretch of Interstate 210 through the heart of Pasadena will be named the Jackie Robinson Memorial Highway under a plan approved by the Legislature on Tuesday.
Robinson broke through racial barriers of professional baseball as a star player for the Brooklyn Dodgers, the team that relocated to Los Angeles in 1958. But the Hall of Famer grew up in Pasadena, attending John Muir High School and then UCLA.
“Jackie Robinson is not only an inspiring figure to us for his accomplishments in athletics, but also as a civil-rights-era trailblazer who advocated for social change,” said Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Glendale), the author of the freeway naming plan, Assembly Concurrent Resolution 197.
The state Assembly on Tuesday sent Gov. Jerry Brown a measure that would expand the ban on texting while driving to include other distracting operations of smartphones, including searching for "Pokemon Go" characters.
Assemblyman Bill Quirk (D-Hayward) said smartphone technology and applications have increased since the state outlawed texting on handheld devices.
The bill, which prohibits using a handheld device in a way that distracts from driving, is “an important step in reducing distracted-driving accidents, injuries and deaths,” Quirk told his colleagues.
For the second consecutive year, Gov. Jerry Brown will have to decide on a measure that would allow gravely ill patient access to experimental drugs.
The Assembly on Tuesday gave final legislative approval to Assemblyman Ian Charles Calderon's so-called "right-to-try" legislation, which authorizes drug and medical device manufacturers to make their products available to terminally ill patients, even if the products have not yet been cleared by the federal Food and Drug Administration.
Last year, Brown vetoed a similar proposal by Calderon, a Democrat from Whittier, saying the Food and Drug Administration had recently streamlined a program that allows the very sick to apply for access to drugs still pending approval.
Gov. Jerry Brown must now decide whether to eliminate the sales tax charged on tampons, after a bipartisan vote by the Assembly on Tuesday sent the proposal to his desk.
Assembly Bill 1561 would create a five-year tax break on the purchase of menstrual products. A legislative bill analysis estimated the lost revenue at $20 million a year, split evenly between local and state governments.
But Democratic and Republican legislators agreed that the tax was unfair, imposed on women simply because of their gender and a financial burden on low-income women. They argued other life necessities, including medicine, are also exempted from sales taxes.
California lawmakers voted Tuesday to ban government travel to states believed to discriminate against LGBT people.
AB 1887 aims to prevent the government from sending its employees to states that have passed laws after June 26, 2015, that allow "discrimination against same-sex couples or their families or on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.” It also would prohibit California from funding travel to those states.
The California attorney general would be responsible for creating and publishing a list of those states.