Three Bills By Assemblyman Mike Gatto Headed to Governor to be Signed

By On August 13, 2012

Assemblyman Mike Gatto hopes that Governor Brown does not suffer from writer’s cramp after hopefully signing three bills authored by the Burbank legislator.

The first bill targets violence in stadiums with the hope of keeping families safe.

Assembly Bill 2464, the Improving Personal Safety at Stadiums Act, authored by Assemblyman Gatto, passed the Senate today by a 36-0 vote.

The Act would require major-league sports stadiums in California to clearly post the numbers fans can use to call or text-message stadium security.  Such signs would need to be visible from the stands and in parking lots.  The bill was inspired by recent incidents of senseless violence at professional sporting events in California, and a sense in the Assemblymember’s community that action was needed to protect the majority of fans from the few violent, bad actors.

“Many parents have told me that they are afraid to take their kids to a ballgame,” said Gatto.  “This law will allow fans to report incidents to stadium security before they escalate out of control.”  Indeed, several of the more high-profile beatings lasted over a span of several minutes, during which frantic fans dialed 911. In those instances, it is stadium security (from within the stadium) and not the police (coming from outside the stadium) who is best equipped to quickly respond and prevent an injury from becoming more serious.

With broad bipartisan support, the Act now heads to the Governor for consideration.  “It has become apparent that we need to act to keep the action at professional games on the field and out of the stands,” said Gatto, “AB 2464 is a simple, common-sense, and preventative solution.”

The next bill protects senior citizens from having money drained from their bank accounts.

AB 1624, authored by Assemblyman Gatto, an important measure to protect senior citizens and others from having their bank accounts drained, cleared its final legislative hurdle today, passing the State Assembly on concurrence by a unanimous, bipartisan vote of 78-0. The bill now heads to the Governor.

The legislation clarifies that funds in bank accounts with more than one signer belong to each person based upon their contributions. The bill was necessary after a divided California Court of Appeal stunned legal pundits when it held that whoever withdraws money first from a bank account becomes the owner of the funds. That decision, in Lee v. Yang (2003) 111 Cal. App. 4th 481, was widely panned by senior advocates and the Conference of California Bar Associations as authorization to drain an unsuspecting senior citizen’s bank account.

“This bill will ensure that senior citizens, the disabled, and others who entrust caregivers and family members with their finances do not find themselves to be penniless victims of a race to the bank,” commented Gatto. The bill has, therefore, received strong support from the California Chapter of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), Conference of California Bar Associations, Executive Committee of the Trusts & Estates Section of the State Bar of California and the Professional Fiduciary Association of California Bar Association.

“We cannot continue to protect those who use positions of trust to legally victimize vulnerable Californians,” said Gatto. “I hope that Governor Brown will join me to reverse this ruling that has left thousands of Californians financially exposed.”

The final bill brings technology and smart phones to a practical use for motorists who need to show proof of insurance.

Assemblyman Gatto’s Assembly Bill 1708, a measure which would give California drivers the option to present their proof of auto insurance in electronic form, such as on a smartphone or other personal electronic device, was passed by the Assembly on a vote of 78-1 and now heads to Governor Brown’s desk for his consideration.

“This legislation falls into the category of making people’s lives easier by embracing technology in order to eliminate one of life’s small hassles,” said Assemblyman Gatto, “and it brings laws dealing with possessing and presenting proof of auto insurance into the electronic age.”

Under the measure, auto insurance providers would be authorized to issue the state-required proof of insurance documentation in electronic form, if requested by a consumer. The bill also clarifies to law enforcement officials that the electronic version of this insurance document is equivalent to the paper form and acceptable for presentation during a traffic stop or after an accident.

“It only makes sense for the state where the iPad was designed to remain on the technological forefront,” continued Gatto. “We have a real opportunity to provide a win-win for consumers and insurance providers by helping state law evolve with technology in a way that allows for more efficiency in the way business is transacted in California. I look forward to Governor Brown signing this pro-business/pro-consumer piece of legislation.”