SACRAMENTO – On the same week that the State Assembly adjourned in the memory of the Borderline shooting victims, Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin (D – Thousand Oaks) introduced a package of bills that will help keep firearms out of the hands of people who pose a threat to themselves or others.
“Far too many people that our courts have found to be too dangerous to possess firearms continue to possess these deadly weapons,” Assemblymember Jacqui Irwin said. “By improving the Gun Violence Restraining Order (GVRO) law and empowering local law enforcement agencies to reduce the backlog of armed prohibited persons, these bills provide the tools that are necessary to proactively keep our communities safe while respecting the rights and due process of responsible gun owners.”
- AB 12, previously introduced, is symbolic of the 12 victims of the Borderline tragedy on November 7th, 2018. The bill was amended to make GVROs a more efficient and reliable tool for law enforcement by: (1) allowing for the simultaneous approval of a search warrant for firearms and ammunition when a GVRO is issued, (2) extending the default prohibition for notice and hearing GVROs from one to five years, and (3) clarifying that there is no 24 hour grace period for temporary emergency GVROS that would enable owners to hide, sell, transfer, or even use their firearm instead of handing it over to law enforcement.
- AB 339 addresses the lack of awareness of GVROs by requiring local law enforcement agencies to create policies and standards for their own departmental use of GVROs. Fewer than 200 GVROs were issued in the first two years the law was in effect. This bill will provide an opportunity for local law enforcement agencies to work with their front-line officers, mental health professionals, and community members to tailor policies to meet community expectations.
- AB 340 creates a grant program for local jurisdictions to investigate and remove weapons from prohibited persons. California law makes it illegal for those who have previously been convicted of a felony or violent misdemeanor, as well as persons experiencing mental health crises or narcotics addiction, to possess firearms. A persistent backlog of 10,000+ subjects in the state’s Armed Prohibited Persons System (APPS), which tracks these subjects and is administered by the California Department of Justice, highlights the importance of engaging local peace officers with on-the-ground knowledge of their community.
“I appreciate Assemblymember Irwin working with law enforcement to identify issues that should be addressed,” Ventura County Sheriff Bill Ayub said. “This is about keeping guns out of the hands of people who should not have access to them and is an important step to providing our law enforcement officers with the laws and tools to keep our community safe.”