By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley) – Senator Sharon Runner (R-Antelope Valley) announced she is authoring legislation that would make sex-offender residency restrictions more workable, while keeping the integrity of voter approved Jessica’s Law intact. Senate Bill 54 is designed to clarify any confusion caused by In Re Taylor, the recent decision of the California Supreme Court regarding CDCR’s enforcement of sex offenders in San Diego County.
“The residency restrictions in Jessica’s Law provide important protection and peace of mind for California’s families,” said Runner. “Unfortunately, the California Supreme Court decision does not provide county governments with the ability to protect these voter approved residency restrictions when possible and expedite relief when necessary.”
Specifically, SB 54 provides that the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of each county would have primary jurisdiction to consolidate and hear petitions challenging the 2000 foot residency restriction as laid out in Jessica’s Law. The Court would grant relief if it was established that there was a pervasive lack of compliant housing in the subject county.
SB 54 also clarifies how 2,000 feet should be measured and ensures that only violent sex offenders are subject to the restriction.
Runner authored voter-approved Jessica’s Law along with her husband, Board of Equalization Vice Chair George Runner, in 2006. In addition to mandatory residency restrictions for sex offenders, the comprehensive law increased penalties for the most egregious sex offenses and provides law enforcement with more tools to impede, apprehend and incarcerate sex offenders.
SB 54 will be heard in the Senate Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, June 30, 2015.
Elected in March 2015, Sharon Runner represents portions of Los Angeles and San Bernardino Counties as Senator for the 21st District. Her district includes the Antelope Valley, Victor Valley and portions of the Santa Clarita Valley. For more information, visit http://district21.cssrc.us/.