Photo via Pixabay
Photo via Pixabay

Backers of an initiative to requiring the governor to appoint an 11-member panel to recommend changes to the state’s laws about the use of reasonable force by law enforcement officers have received permission to begin gathering signatures, Secretary of State Alex Padilla.

The initiative would suspend laws pertaining to use of force by law enforcement for 180 days while the panel reviews them and recommends changes “to prevent this ongoing and increasing level of violence committed against people of color,” according to the initiative.

The initiative would bar members of existing police organizations in California from being appointed to the panel. It would also require law enforcement officers to undergo training on the amended laws before continued service.

The fiscal impact of the initiative would depend on how it is implemented, according to an estimate prepared by the Legislative Analyst’s Office and Department of Finance. The increased state and local costs for officer training could be significant, particularly in the short-term, according to the estimate.

Valid signatures from 365,880 registered voters — 5 percent of the total votes cast for governor in the 2014 general election — must be submitted by Nov. 23 to qualify the measure for the November 2016 ballot, according to Padilla.

—City News Service

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