SB 153 (Migden) has passed the Assembly Appropriations committee and will make it’s way to a final floor vote in the Assembly and a concurrence vote before moving on to the Governor’s desk for signature. This bill redistributes funding designated for crime victim services and ensures that money will not be used for alternative projects. An amendment authorizing the funding only in years in which California does not have a structural deficit was forced on the bill during committee. CALCASA and others are in the process of analyzing what effects, if any that this amendment will have.
During the bill’s prolonged stay in the Appropriations committee, CALCASA members and supporters sent more than 1000 letters to committee members asking to move the bill. The proposal came under strict scrutiny as it had become a play piece during the 51-day $145 Billion budget impasse. Through the constant work of CALCASA supporters, the bill was allowed to move along with only two hurdles to go.
Referring to Thursday’s passage, CALCASA Executive Director Suzanne Brown-McBride says

We’re very happy that the Appropriations Committee recognizes both how vital this funding is and that this money has always belonged in victim services and public safety. Our supporters have helped in overcoming a huge obstacle here, but we still have a way to go before victim services programs will be able to use the penalty assessment funds, as the public expects.