Local Government Working Group Identifies New Mandate Claims
February 1, 2018
What do youth offender parole hearings, processing “U visas,” and providing multilingual election materials have in common? They are all state-imposed mandates that may be eligible for reimbursement should a test claimant come forward and file with the Commission on State Mandates before the 365-day statute of limitations is up. The Local Government Mandated Services Working Group recently met and had a lively discussion about these and other potential test claim opportunities, all detailed below.
U visas – SB 674 (Chapter 721, Statutes of 2015)
In the event an immigrant is victim to a specified crime, local agencies are now required to indicate the “victim’s helpfulness” on the applicable form so they can apply for a U-visa. This needs to be done within 90 days of the victim’s request (14 days if the victim is in removal proceedings).
Youth Offender Parole Hearings – People v Franklin (2016) and People v Perez (2016)
The California Supreme Court recently interpreted current law to require that at the time a juvenile is convicted and sentenced, a hearing must be held to demonstrate possible diminished culpability based on the juvenile’s age. Parole boards would then be able to use that evidence when they’re determining parole eligibility.
Written Notice to Domestic Violence Victims – SB 40 (Chapter 331, Statutes of 2017)
Law enforcement agencies are now required to provide written health-related information to victims at the scene of a domestic violence incident. Additionally, law enforcement agencies are required to include the number of domestic violence incidents involving strangulation or suffocation in their existing reports to the state.
Multilingual Elections Materials – AB 918 (Chapter 845, Statutes of 2017)
Effective January 1, 2018, county elections officials are required to comply with a lengthy list of requirements – the overall goal being to increase the availability and accessibility of multilingual elections materials.
Elimination of Fees against Youth Offenders – SB 190 (Chapter 678, Statutes of 2017)
Under SB 190, counties are prevented from recouping the costs associated with juvenile justice wards or youth who are given informal probation under Welfare & Institutions Code Section 654. Without this fee authority, those services (for example, court appointed attorney fees, drug testing, electronic monitoring, custody, and diversion programs) could potentially be eligible for reimbursement by the state. The Working Group is currently analyzing this to determine its validity under the Commission’s test claim requirements.
To learn more about the mandates identified above, please contact Tracy Sullivan or Dorothy Johnson. Additionally, the Local Government Mandated Services Working Group is always accepting new members and encourages all interested parties to sign-up for the mailing list by contacting either Tracy or Dorothy at the email addresses linked above.