CSAC Bulletin Article

New Laws Impacting Counties- Administration of Justice

October 29, 2020

Governor Newsom met the September 30 deadline to take action on measures approved by the Legislature and delivered to his desk. To keep counties informed of new laws that impact them, CSAC will be publishing a series of articles to spotlight those laws in each policy area. This week, the Administration of Justice policy area provides information on new laws affecting criminal justice fees, courts, probation, police reform and the realignment of the Division of Juvenile Justice.

The new laws listed below become effective January 1, 2021 unless otherwise noted.

Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) Realignment

SB 823 (Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review) – Realigns the responsibility to counties for the remaining youthful offenders currently eligible for placement in the state Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ). The bill includes the closure of DJJ intake on July 1, 2021, and provides ongoing funding for counties to serve youth locally. The bill also includes $9.6 million in 2020-21 for competitive implementation grants for counties through the Board of State and Community Corrections. CSAC opposed this bill but worked with the state to include key amendments, including increased funding with a growth factor, county protections against funding decreases, and a delayed implementation timeline.

Criminal Fees

AB 1869 (Committee on Budget) – Repeals the authority to collect various criminal justice administrative fees upon conviction or arrest and also appropriates $65 million annually for five years to counties to backfill associated revenue losses. CSAC supported the final version of this bill after negotiating the terms of the backfill.

SB 1290 (Durazo) – Vacates certain county-assessed or court-ordered costs imposed before January 1, 2018, against parents and guardians of youth subject to the juvenile delinquency system and against persons aged 18 to 21 subject to the criminal justice system. This bill is an extension of SB 190 (Mitchell), Chapter 678, Statutes of 2017, which limits the authority of local agencies to assess and collect specified fees against families of persons subject to the juvenile delinquency system.


AB 3364 (Committee on Judiciary) – Enacts numerous technical changes to several of the California codes as part of the judiciary omnibus bill.  One of the technical changes in AB 3364 is the delay of implementation of SB 10 (Hertzberg), Chap. 244, Stats. 2018, which repeals the cash bail system and instead requires Pretrial Assessment Services to assess a person arrested or detained according to a risk assessment instrument and specifies the procedures for the detention or release of that person. Generally, the SB 10 implementation is delayed to October 1, 2021.

AB 3234 (Ting) – Creates a court-initiated misdemeanor diversion program and lowers the minimum age limitation for the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s Elderly Parole Program to inmates who are 50 years of age and who have served a minimum of 20 years. Specifically, this bill authorizes a superior court judge to offer diversion to a person charged with a misdemeanor over the objection of a prosecuting attorney, except that a defendant may not be offered diversion for specific charged offenses and authorizes the court to exercise various other options with regards to diversion.


AB 1950 (Kamlager) – Limits the term of probation to no longer than two years for a felony conviction and provides that the two-year probation limit does not apply to offenses defined by law as violent felonies, or to an offense that includes a specific probation term within its provisions. The bill also limits the probation term to one year for misdemeanor offenses and provides that the two-year probation limit does not apply to a felony conviction for grand theft from an employer, embezzlement, or theft by false pretenses, if the total value of property taken exceeds $25,000.

AB 901 (Gipson) – Repeals the jurisdiction of the juvenile criminal court over minors who habitually refuse to obey the reasonable and proper orders or directions of school authorities.  Requires a peace officer to refer a minor, who habitually refuses to obey the reasonable and proper orders of the minor’s parents or has four or more truancies within one school year to a community-based resource, the county probation department, a health agency, a local educational agency, or other governmental entities that may provide services.

Police Reform

AB 1185 (McCarty) – Authorizes a county to establish a sheriff oversight board to assist the board of supervisors with those duties as they relate to the sheriff, either by action of the board of supervisors or through a vote of county residents; authorizes a county, either by action of the board of supervisors or through a vote of county residents, to establish an office of the inspector general to assist the board of supervisors with these duties as they relate to the sheriff; and authorizes the chair of the oversight board and the inspector general to issue a subpoena or subpoena duces tecum when deemed necessary to investigate a matter within their jurisdiction.

AB 1506 (McCarty) – Creates a division within the Department of Justice to, upon the request of a law enforcement agency, review the use-of-force policy of the agency and make recommendations. Requires a state prosecutor to investigate incidents of an officer-involved shooting resulting in the death of an unarmed civilian. Authorizes the state prosecutor to prepare a written report, and would require the state prosecutor to post any reports made on a public internet website. Requires the Attorney General to operate a Police Practices Division within the department to review, upon the request of a local law enforcement agency, the use of deadly force policies of that law enforcement agency and make recommendations, as specified. The provisions of this bill become effective on July 1, 2023.

AB 1196 (Gipson) - Prohibits law enforcement agencies from authorizing carotid restraint holds and choke holds and defines “carotid restraint” and “choke hold”.

AB 732 (Bonta) – Requires jails and prisons to offer inmates who are possibly pregnant or capable of becoming pregnant a pregnancy test, and requires specified medical treatment and services for county jail and state prison inmates who are pregnant.

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