An effort to overturn the law overhauling the state’s monetary bail system has qualified for the November 2020 ballot, Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced Wednesday.
Provisions of SB 10 are suspended with the referendum qualifying for the ballot.
Under SB 10, people arrested on suspicion of criminal offenses can be held in jail only if they pose a significant risk to public safety or risk missing their court date, according to Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, one of the bill’s co-authors.
Opponents of the law needed to submit valid signatures from 365,880 registered voters — 5 percent of the total votes cast for governor in the 2014 general election — to qualify the referendum to for the ballot.
A referendum can qualify via random sampling of petition signatures if the sampling projects a number of valid signatures greater than 110 percent of the required number. The initiative needed over 402,468 projected valid signatures to qualify by random sampling, and it exceeded that threshold Wednesday, Padilla said.
Backers of the referendum say they gathered 576,813 signatures in 70 days.
“We knew with the momentum against this law from people on all sides of the issue, getting on the ballot would not be the problem,” said Jeff Clayton, executive director and policy director of the American Bail Coalition, a trade association of national bail insurance companies. “Now we can move on toward defeating this reckless law.”
Hertzberg expressed confidence voters would support the law.
“SB 10 was supported by all three branches of government, reform advocates, public safety officers and workers,” Hertzberg said.
Instead of setting money bail amounts, SB 10 allows for non-monetary release conditions for eligible defendants, such as GPS monitoring or home detention with electronic monitoring.
The law gives judges discretion to determine which defendants pose a safety risk to the public or might potentially fail to appear in court and should remain jailed.
The law requires local courts to set up systems to identify individuals who are a risk to public safety or at risk of missing their court date, but allows jurisdictions to dictate the specifics, rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach.
The result would be that a “vast majority” of people would be released from jail within 12-24 hours of their arrest, according to the bill’s sponsors.
>> Want to read more stories like this? Get our Free Daily Newsletters Here!Follow us: