On March 27 through March 28, the San Joaquin County Probation Officers Association Board attended the State Coalition of Probation Organizations Legislative Day at the State Capital. The purpose of these two days was to meet with legislature and discuss potential bills that are important to probation officers, and to also discuss different strategies when dealing with such legislation. Your board was split up on to several teams and branched out meeting with members of the assembly as well as members of the senate in an attempt to educate them on our roles of what we do and how certain bills affect our lives, and jobs.
This year SCOPO sponsored Assembly Bill 310 introduced by Assembly Member Santiago. The purpose of this bill was to address probation officers having to serve jury duty pertaining to criminal trials. Members at the Capital were educated on the negative affect this has on probation peace officers as personal information is shared during the selection process as well as potential conflicts as pre-sentence reports are completed by Probation as well as disposition reports for minors. Sherriff deputies and police officers are already exempt from having to serve on a jury, due to the realization of the inherent danger that they are exposed to when dealing with potential criminals. This bill would seek to extend this exemption to probation peace officers. For more information pertaining to this bill, please click the link below.
Overall the meetings were a success. Your board as part of SCOPO also addressed concerns pertaining to certain legislation and how they would affect the lives of our officers as well as the probation field. Our opposition to these bills was stated and presented with information in an attempt to help our legislature understand how each bill would negatively affect our profession and the community we serve. Your board will continue to advocate on your behalf at both the local and state level.
Learn more about the AB-310 Trial Jury Selection and Management Act https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201920200AB310