AM Alert: Gun access, school reserves cap bills get late-session push

08/18/2014 5:00 AM

10/22/2014 2:19 PM

After the mass killing of six college students in Isla Vista in May, lawmakers called for new restrictions to prevent mentally ill people from obtaining guns.

A proposal from Assembly members Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, and Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara, would allow family members or law enforcement officers to petition a court to remove firearms from someone who they believe presents harm to themselves or others.

As session draws to a close, Skinner will gather with gun control activists outside the Emeryville Police Department at 10 a.m. to bring renewed attention to the bill, which currently awaits a vote on the Senate floor.

Other proposed legislation also followed the killing, including bills from state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, that would require law enforcement to search California’s gun-purchase database before going on a welfare check and provide grants for police to take guns away from those who are not allowed to own them. At the national level, three California lawmakers introduced a bill enabling family members to seek a court order to stop a dangerous person from possessing a firearm.

VIDEO: The Legislature still has many issues involving big money, big interests and emotion to resolve in the final weeks of session, Dan Walters says.

SHOW ME THE MONEY: Over the objections of school leaders, last-minute budget language capped the amount of money California school districts can set aside in reserves. Many education officials and lobbyists were shocked by the major policy change out of nowhere, speculating that it was tied to the interests of public employee unions. Assemblywoman Kristin Olsen, R-Riverbank, and Sen. Jean Fuller, R-Bakersfield, now plan to introduce a bill to undo that restriction, allowing districts to build unlimited rainy-day funds. They will discuss further during a press conference on the south steps of the Capitol at 10 a.m.

CELEBRATIONS: The Assembly will honor its long-serving chief administrative officer, Jon Waldie, during floor session at noon. Waldie, who began his career in the Legislature 34 years ago in the mail room, is retiring in November. There will also be a reception for him in Room 317 of the Capitol following the adjournment of session.

Editor’s note: This post was updated at 10:21 a.m. to reflect that Williams and Jackson were not scheduled to attend the press conference in Emeryville.

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