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Video Appears to Show an LAPD Vehicle Come into Contact with a Protester in DTLA

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Video captured by World Magazine reporter Sophia Lee Hyun and shared on Twitter this afternoon appears to document an altercation between an LAPD officer or officers inside an SUV and a small band of protesters making their way through downtown.

The video depicts a police SUV stopped at a crosswalk on a mostly empty street adjacent to Pershing Square. Two people stand directly in front of the vehicle, with a modest gathering of marchers considerably farther behind. After a moment of hesitation at the crosswalk, as protesters chant and appear to begin walking towards the SUV, the driver swerves and accelerates as a man falls to the ground and appears to briefly slip beneath the vehicle’s front end. Rather than stop, the vehicle rapidly reverses into the empty street, then turns and speeds away.

According to Hyun the victim was not severely injured. “The guy is OK,” she tweeted shortly after posting the initial video, “He got a scrape on his ankle and is in shock.”

The incident was also captured from above by KTLA cameras.

An LAPD spokesperson informed Los Angeles that “the Los Angeles Police Department is aware of the incident that occurred during one of the many spontaneous protests in downtown Los Angeles” and stated that the department is “looking into the matter.” No information was provided about the status of the officer driving the SUV.

The sight of a police vehicle striking a civilian is reminiscent of a number of reports from Saturday’s protests in New York City. That city’s mayor has called today for a formal investigation into law enforcement behavior after at least two police SUVs were documented plowing into a group of demonstrators.

“NYPD officers just drove an SUV into a crowd of human beings,” Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez tweeted about the situation. “They could’ve killed them and we don’t know how many they injured. NO ONE gets to slam an SUV through a crowd of human beings.”


RELATED: PHOTOS: Protests Began Peacefully in Pan-Pacific Park Before Tensions Mounted


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A Countywide Curfew Begins on Sunday at 6 p.m. in Los Angeles

UPDATE 5/31/20: As protesters continue to demonstrate against police violence across the city, L.A. County has implemented a curfew beginning at 6 p.m. on Sunday and ending at 6 a.m. on Monday morning. Earlier today, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that a citywide curfew would be in place beginning at 8 p.m., but Sheriff Alex Villanueva’s curfew supersedes the Mayor’s order.

“In the event the county curfew is more stringent than a resident’s local curfew order, the county curfew will supersede it,” the county’s website explains. “In other words, if a resident’s local curfew order is 8 p.m., the 6 p.m. county curfew supersedes it; if the local order is 4 p.m., the local order still stands.”

Throughout Los Angeles, people received conflicting emergency alerts on their phones, prompting confusion and suspicion that the conflict was meant to confuse people. Mayor Garcetti has not deleted or updated a tweet from earlier today that says curfew begins at 8 p.m. on Sunday.

“All incorporated and unincorporated areas of Los Angeles County shall adhere to staying off public streets, avenues, boulevards, places, walkways, alleys, parks or any public areas or unimproved private realty within Los Angeles County, between the hours of 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. the following day,” the county’s website says. The order does not apply to police officers, firefighters, and the National Guard, as well as people traveling to and from work, people who need medical help, and “people experiencing homelessness and without access to a viable shelter.”


Originally published 5/30/20:

A protest that began around noon in Pan-Pacific Park has since migrated to the area of 3rd and Fairfax, where the LAPD has declared an unlawful assembly. At least one police vehicle was set on fire and several others were vandalized as police bombarded the area, reportedly deploying tear gas and flash bangs.

As some of the crowd dispersed, a group of protesters, both on foot and in cars, made its way through the city, heading east on Beverly Boulevard. At approximately 3:30 p.m., moments after a parade of police cars and motorcycles headed west through the area, the protesters made their way through Larchmont Village, where neighbors stopped and chanted in support.

It’s the fourth day of nationwide protests against racism and police violence in the wake of the death of George Floyd, who died while being detained by Minneapolis police on May 25. Derek Chauvin, the officer who was filmed kneeling on Floyd’s neck for a prolonged period of time, has since been arrested and charged with murder.

After a night of protests in downtown L.A. that resulted in upward of 500 arrests, Mayor Eric Garcetti has implemented a curfew beginning at 8 p.m. Saturday night, continuing through 5:30 a.m. Sunday. Initially, the curfew only impacted downtown, but it’s now citywide.


RELATED: The LAPD Arrested 500 Protesters in DTLA on Friday Night


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These Organizations Are Accepting Donations to Support Protesters in L.A. and Nationwide

In recent days, thousands of Angelenos have taken to the street in demonstrations expressing anger at police brutality, triggered specifically by the May 25 killing of George Floyd, for which a  Minneapolis police officer has been arrested on murder charges. Similar protests have taken place in cities across the country, and may continue for days to come. If you are wondering how to support protesters with financial contributions to the anti-brutality movement, several verified organizations are accepting donations.

The organizations and fundraisers listed below are raising cash to go to bail assistance, providing food and basic aid, and to growing advocacy organizations dedicated to the cause. While bail deviation programs are still in effect in Los Angeles County as part of the COVID-19 response, not all of the hundreds of protestors arrested will qualify for those waivers, and other jurisdictions that have seen large-scale protests are not offering comparable programs at all.

Local

The Bail ProjectWith locations in Compton, Van Nuys, and San Diego, as well as offices or partnerships in cities from coast to coast, the Bail Project is one of the largest and most established bail funds.

Peoples City Council Freedom Fund: The L.A. activist group Peoples City Council stages protest actions on a variety of issues around social and economic justice. Recently, the local group has been lobbying for a city budget that reduces the share of public funds used to pay for the LAPD.

Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment: This grassroots organization aims to register voters and empower Californians to advocate and vote for economic, racial, and social justice.

Minnesota

George Floyd Memorial Fund: Established by the family of George Floyd, money raised by the memorial fund will be used to care for Floyd’s children, and to fund counseling, legal, and other essential services.

Black Visions Collective: A Black, trans, and queer-helmed organization in Minnesota, Black Visions Collective has been working to “pursue our commitment to dismantling systems of oppression and violence” since 2017. Right now, that means delivering supplies and support on the ground.

Reclaim the Block: This advocacy group in Minneapolis was established in 2018 with a goal of diverting city funds from the Minneapolis Police Department and into non-police programs that serve communities in need.

National 

Black Lives Matter: The national umbrella of the Black Lives Matter movement, donations to BLM go toward programs and actions across the country, focused on ending white supremacy and state-sanctioned violence.

Campaign Zero: Campaign Zero is a national advocacy organization that uses data-based research to inform policy solutions aimed at eliminating police violence.


RELATED: The LAPD Arrested 500 Protesters in DTLA on Friday Night


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After a Night of Looting, Melrose Business Owners Survey the Damage

From periodic break-ins to the 1992 uprising to a prolonged shutdown resulting from a global pandemic, l.a.Eyeworks has weathered more than a few storms during its 40-plus years on Melrose Avenue. In advance of yesterday’s protests and the looting that followed, owner Gai Gherardi and her team prepared for the worst, moving the store’s inventory of glasses offsite. Alas, it didn’t keep looters from entering the store, but it did limit what they were able to make off with.

“All they took was a chair,” Gherardi explains over the whir of a drill as an employee puts up slabs of plywood. “No chaos was made in the store. It wasn’t violent or violated.”

Other businesses weren’t quite as lucky. Round Two, a vintage and resale store flanked by Buzzz R Us Smoke Shop and JapanLA, was completely cleaned out. A spray painted message on the boarded up front window informs would-be looters “store empty…nothing left.” Businesses from Fairfax to Larchmont Village were vandalized and cleared of what was inside.

By midmorning on Saturday, gawkers and helpers alike were out in force as cleanup efforts kicked off along Melrose, which was hard hit after last night’s protests against police violence gave way to vandalism and looting along the thoroughfare. The Los Angeles Times reports that looters were spotted ransacking the Adidas store at around 9:45 p.m. on Friday, but the area’s many mom-and-pop outposts weren’t spared, even ones that posted signs in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. A sign in the window of Stag Hair Parlor informs passersby that it’s minority owned; still its door was smashed and its inventory of hair products was taken from inside.

Volunteers carrying brooms and passing out supplies like bottled water were making their way up and down the street. A woman who identified herself as a Robertson Boulevard business owner stopped by storefronts offering croissants to people cleaning and boarding up. Amid the neighborly positivity, others betrayed an undercurrent of anger. One man, who was volunteering to sweep up glass outside affected businesses, asked not to be identified because “anything I say is not going to be good.” He and a companion had just cleaned up a nearby florist, padlocked the gate, and left a phone number so the owner could reach out for the combination.

melrose looting
Gai Gherardi outside l.a.Eyeworks

Gwynedd Stuart

Standing outside her boarded-up glasses store, Gherardi says she was genuinely moved by yesterday’s protest, which began peacefully as a Black Lives Matter rally in Pan-Pacific Park. “I was flooding with tears from the beauty of kids coming from every direction, it was incredible. And then it turned,” she says. “I really do not believe the intention at all…it’s just so unfortunate. I understand the agony, but this gets us nowhere.”

She says she feels for all her fellow small business owners who were impacted last night, but is confident they’ll rebound. “These stores here, these are family businesses for the most part and they’ve been hanging on by a thread through the coronavirus, and then this was a lot. It’s a gut punch,” she says. “But we’ve been through a lot and we’ll get through this. I know we will. There are some deep discussions to have and we have to stop with this ridiculous license to be racist that’s just unleashed something.”


RELATED: Protesters Met by Multitudes of Police in Downtown L.A. on Saturday Night


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PHOTOS: Saturday’s Protests Began Peacefully in Pan-Pacific Park Before Tensions Mounted

By now we’ve all seen images of cop cars vandalized and burning near the intersection of Fairfax and 3rd Street as tensions between protesters and police reached a fever pitch, a situation that continued well into Saturday night as a curfew was imposed and the National Guard was called in by Mayor Eric Garcetti, and a state of emergency was declared by Governor Gavin Newsom.

Earlier in the day on Saturday, Black Lives Matter protesters gathered in Pan-Pacific Park to demonstrate. (Photos by Wayne Nathan)

As the day progressed, tensions between protesters and police mounted. Los Angeles reporter Samuel Braslow was grazed by a rubber bullet while observing the scene outside CBS Studios on 3rd Street. (Photos by Samuel Braslow)

 


RELATED: Protesters Met by Multitudes of Police in Downtown L.A. on Saturday Night


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Protesters Met by Multitudes of Police in Downtown L.A. on Saturday Night

For most of Saturday afternoon, downtown Los Angeles felt eerily quiet. Few people were out, besides carpenters boarding up windows and security guards making their rounds. Following Friday night’s protests against police violence in the wake of the murder of Minneapolis man George Floyd, shattered glass still lined Figueroa Street, and building after building was tagged with messages like ACAB (“all cops are bastards”), FUCK THE POLICE, and FUCK12 (“12” being a reference to police).

On Friday, protests turned violent after the LAPD declared a nearly four-square-mile section of downtown an unlawful assembly area. As the police pushed protestors south along Spring Street from City Hall, people began smashing windows, looting stores, setting fires, and clashing with officers. “Things picked up around 9 or 10 p.m.,” a security guard at a construction site on 7th and Grand told Los Angeles. “There were too many people for the cops to do anything.”

A few blocks over, on Spring Street, carpenters boarded up the windows of Bolt Barbers and Buzz Wine, two shops that had been broken into and looted the night before. “We’ve been here since 4 a.m.,” a man told me at around 4:30 p.m. A block away at Living Room Vape & Smokeshop, which had also seen its windows smashed in, customers were lined up outside, entering one by one to make their purchases. “We’re going to close at 5:30, tonight,” the owner said. “I don’t want to be here by the curfew.” In response to the previous night’s unrest and actions in the Fairfax District on Saturday afternoon, Mayor Eric Garcetti ordered a citywide curfew that began at 8 p.m. on Saturday.

“I woke up to 30 missed calls from my security guard at 7 a.m.,” Aidan Nelson, co-founder of the Wonzimer art gallery at Pershing Square, said. Nelson had only left the gallery a few hours earlier, at 2 a.m. on Saturday morning. By 4 a.m., the door to his gallery had been smashed open, the front office looted of computers and projectors, and six paintings were stolen off the wall from the exhibition space in the back. At 6 a.m., when his security guard showed up, he found a man with a can of gasoline and a blowtorch attempting to burn down the building. “The security guard chased him off,” Nelson said, “and we’ve spent the day cleaning up and installing a gate” across the entrance.

Nelson said he called the police and attempted to file a report, but was handed off from one line to another, and eventually gave up. When two cops passed by the gallery, “they told me the best thing to do is just board up the place and get out of downtown.” As night approached on Saturday, Nelson wasn’t feeling optimistic about getting help from the police: “They’re not going to help.”

At 6 p.m. on Saturday evening, a procession of protesters drove south down Hill Street, honking their car horns and cheering loudly out of their windows. People began gathering along the sidewalk to watch the procession, cheer, and film them with their phones or raise a fist in solidarity. Then, at around 6:30 p.m., a large group of people marched south down Olive to Pershing Square and turned up Fifth Street toward the Central Library. The crowd was mostly young—teenagers, people in their 20s and 30s; only some wore masks.

“This is our first protest,” Veronica and Crystal, two of the protestors in the crowd, told me. “We are protesting to take down the whole racist system that is the basis of the U.S. Arresting one officer is not enough.” Another member of the group explained that they’d been an Mariachi Plaza, and had marched downtown.

Shortly after, police began to arrive, and the energy of the group of protesters changed instantly. At Flower Street, the group turned south as a wall of police began marching behind them in full riot gear.

The march continued down Flower until, suddenly, a second line of police cut them off at Eighth Street. The police fired a loud shot directly into the crowd, and many people scattered back up Flower. I spotted a man bleeding from a large gash in his shoulder; he explained to a person filming him that he’d been hit with a baton.

By 7 p.m., several helicopters circled overhead as bands of police played cat-and-mouse with groups of protestors, most of whom were peaceful, although a few bottles and rocks were thrown at officers.

From what I could tell, the police’s method of dealing with the crowds was to trail a group from behind, cut them off from the front, press in, and arrest everyone. In fact, I was caught in one such group. In front of Staples Center, at around 7:10 p.m., two lines of police pressed in on some 20 protestors. They fired rubber bullets into the group, but there was nowhere anyone could go. A few people tried to hop the barricades in front of LA Live to flee, but security guards immediately stopped them.

“Lay down!” one of the protestors instructed, so we all sat. Some panicked, others were silent as two lines of police marched at us, then arrested us one by one. We were placed along the curb, our hands bound with zip ties behind our backs, as we waited for about 30 minutes on a bus to come transport us to the Men’s Detention Center jail. “You’ve all been arrested for failure to disperse,” an officer explained. Ultimately, the bus never arrived, and just before 8 p.m. an officer gave the order to release us all. “You are being released, but if you are detained again, you will be arrested and sent to jail,” he said. Our zip ties were cut and we were sent on our way.

As the 8 p.m. curfew approached, police sirens, flash bangs, and blasts of rubber bullets could be heard throughout the streets. At Broadway and Fifth, the windows of a Rite-Aid were shattered and waves of looters rushed in. A column of police eventually arrived, and the looters scattered. A similar scene took place at the Urban Outfitters at Broadway and Eighth.

For the next few hours, skirmishes flared up around downtown, but by 11 p.m., the streets emptied. Helicopters circled, their lights searching for any remaining looters or groups in violation of curfew, but there was nearly no one to be found—only formations of police at key intersections standing still. Downtown returned to an eerie quiet.


RELATED: Mayor Garcetti Imposes a Citywide Curfew as Police Clash with Protesters in Fairfax


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Inside Saturday’s Protests, from Pan-Pacific Park to Beverly Hills

Thousands of demonstrators descended upon central L.A. on Saturday to protest police brutality and demand justice for George Floyd, the Black Minneapolis resident who died while in police custody last week. Floyd’s death—which happened after the now-arrested white police officer Derek Chauvin knelt in his neck for nearly nine minutes—has sparked large protests and gatherings in dozens of U.S. cities this week, even as the nation continues to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic.

Organizers at Saturday’s demonstration, which was spearheaded by Black Lives Matter, also drew attention to the hundreds of Angelenos who have been killed by police in recent years. In recent weeks, the group has been calling for the defunding of the Los Angeles Police Department, which is slated to receive $5.4 billion—or just under 54 percent of the city’s unrestricted revenue—in the 2020-21 city budget, despite that many other departments will face severe cuts.

Prior to the march, Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors addressed the energetic crowd that had gathered at Pan Pacific Park. “We’re living in the middle of an uprising,” said Cullors. “Let’s be clear: We are in an uprising for black life.”

As protestors streamed out onto the streets, they chanted the names of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old Black woman who was killed during a police raid of her Louisville apartment earlier this month. Homemade signs read “LAPD = terrorists” and “Jail Killer Cops!” Volunteers handed out medical masks and water bottles to participants.

After marching for about an hour, the procession paused in front of the Beverly Center mall a mile and a half away. Flooding the intersection at 3rd street and La Cienega Boulevard, most protestors took a knee in the street, while others climbed atop the roofs of restaurants and businesses. As police helicopters hovered overhead, the crowd chanted “I can’t breathe”—some of the last words spoken by Floyd, as well as Eric Garner, another Black man who died in the custody of New York police in 2014.

Black Lives Matter said that the official protest ended around 2 p.m., but many demonstrators continued to march. As police officers began to blockade streets, the original group was split up. One group of protesters trekked about two more miles to Beverly Hills, where they funneled into the notoriously upscale shopping district Rodeo Drive around 3 p.m. The facades of luxury storefronts like Gucci and Hermes—many of which had been boarded up in advance—were covered in graffiti that read “defund LAPD,” “The Revolution is Coming!” and “ACAB” (all cops are bastards).

beverly hills protest

While demonstrators expressed anger at the Beverly Hills Police posted up in front of Saint Laurent and other stores, the protest remained largely peaceful, although an Alexander McQueen store was reportedly looted later in the evening.

Meanwhile, demonstrators who remained in the Fairfax area engaged in a tense, hours-long standoff with Los Angeles police, who blockaded multiple streets. Officers repeatedly opened fire with rubber bullets into crowds, brandished their batons, and released tear gas. At least two police cars were set on fire, several more were vandalized, and a parked Metro bus was taken over by protestors that climbed onto its roof. At least 20 people were arrested, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Returning to the Fairfax area around 6 p.m., I witnessed police shoot multiple rounds of rubber bullets into a gathering of protestors at Hayworth Avenue and Beverly Boulevard, causing some protestors to scream and run. A volunteer medic in an alleyway treated protestors who had been injured. Some raised their hands and chanted “hands up, don’t shoot.” A couple of fireworks were tossed at the police, resulting in small explosions.

As the situation in the area escalated throughout the evening, a number of businesses along Fairfax and Melrose were looted, and one building was set on fire and burned. Several stores at the Grove shopping mall, including Nordstrom and the Apple store, were looted as well.

On Saturday evening, Mayor Eric Garcetti extended a curfew that had been placed on downtown L.A.—where more than 500 protestors were arrested on Friday night—to the entire city, and announced that the National Guard would be deployed in Los Angeles. The curfew was extended to Sunday night.


RELATED: A Countywide Curfew Begins on Sunday at 6 p.m. in Los Angeles


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The National Guard Has Been Deployed to L.A. at Mayor Garcetti’s Request

As protests against police violence continue across the city, Mayor Eric Garcetti has reportedly requested that the National Guard deploy to Los Angeles.

According to the Los Angeles Times, “the decision came as the situation in the Fairfax District deteriorated, with shops at the Grove, including Nordstrom and the Apple store, vandalized and looted. A small police kiosk in the shopping center was set on fire.”

Garcetti tweeted that the move was made to “support our local response to maintain peace and safety on the streets of our city.” Shortly after 7 p.m., Garcetti declared a citywide curfew to begin at 8 p.m. Almost simultaneously, Metro suspended public transit in the city until 5:30 a.m. Sunday morning. Other cities in L.A. County—including Glendale, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood, and Pasadena—have also imposed 8 p.m. curfews.

Sources tell the L.A. Times that National Guard will be on the streets of L.A. by midnight. There’s been no word on how many “citizen soldiers” will be deployed to L.A., but upward of 700 soldiers have reportedly been deployed to Minneapolis, where George Floyd died in police custody, leading to days of protest across the country.


RELATED: Mayor Garcetti Imposes a Citywide Curfew as Police Clash with Protesters in Fairfax


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The LAPD Arrested 500 Protesters in DTLA on Friday Night

On Friday, a third night of protests against racism and police violence following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis resulted in “mass arrests” in Los Angeles. According to the Los Angeles Times, more than 500 people were arrested and several downtown stores were vandalized, including a CVS and a Whole Foods. Four police officers were reportedly hurt; no tally of injured demonstrators has been provided.

At around 9:30 p.m., the LAPD ominously tweeted that it was declaring an “unlawful assembly” throughout downtown because of “repeated acts of violence.” “Residents should stay inside. Businesses should close. Those on the street are to leave the area.” As commenters pointed out, downtown’s many unhoused residents wouldn’t have the option of clearing the streets or staying inside.

“It’s unsafe. It’s an unlawful assembly,” LAPD Chief Michel Moore told ABC 7 news in an interview on Friday evening. “It’s dangerous for all the residents and others. So it’s unfortunate. It’s a dark day in our history, that we have to do this, but this is what’s going to save lives and this is going to save property.” Police reportedly used flash bangs, tear gas, and rubber bullets on the crowd of demonstrators, referring to some who looted businesses as “opportunists,” who were using the protest as an excuse to make off with some free stuff.

Yesterday evening, Black Lives Matter cofounder and native Angeleno Patrisse Cullors tweeted, “Something like 35 cities are uprising tonight. The collective is tired and full of rage. Let’s be ready for the shift. Can’t wait to live in a world where we are free.” Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted to ask for a “peaceful end to a painful night,” saying “We respect every Angeleno’s right to protest, but violence and vandalism hurts all.”

The uprisings relating to George Floyd’s death and police violence against people of color have coincided with the City of Los Angeles releasing its proposed 2020-21 budget, which allocates 54 percent of the city’s revenues—about $5.4 billion—for the LAPD. That’s an increase of 7.1 percent to the department’s budget, as the Housing and Community Investment Department and the Department of Animal Services face cuts of 9.4 and 14.5 percent, respectively.

Furthermore, as many City Hall employees face pay cuts, college-educated LAPD officers are set to collect bonuses totaling $41 million for “education incentives.” “Now is not the time to ask our front-line first responders to renegotiate contacts in the middle of a pandemic,” Garcetti’s deputy chief of staff Szabo told the L.A. Times.


RELATED: Two Protesters Were Reportedly Injured During George Floyd Demonstrations in DTLA


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Bills Before the California State Legislature Aim to Make Voting in 2020 Safer

While it might have faded from the fore of your mind amid the daily drumbeat of pandemic news, there is still a very big election coming up in November. But how, exactly, ballots will be cast in that election remains the subject of some question. By November, we could be seeing a powerful new wave of the outbreak. Many residents will be unwilling to risk their health to stand in crowded lines and touch voting machines used by hundreds of strangers. California is already pushing to make vote-by-mail the default for all registered voters, but some residents will still need to use in-person voting centers. Two new bills before state legislature attempt to set guidelines for how all of these issues can be addressed.

Introduced in the State Senate by Thomas Umberg of Orange County and in the Assembly by Marc Berman of Menlo Park, AB-860 and SB-423 seek to make a special amendment to existing voting laws in the state in time for the November election. The pair, who chair the elections committees of their respective chambers, also sent a letter to Governor Gavin Newsom, in which they laid out concerns for ensuring access to the right to vote while also protecting public health.

“While mailing voters a ballot is a start, it doesn’t eliminate the need for in-person voting,” the letter reads. “Millions of Californians will need a safe in-person voting location this November because they never received a ballot, lost or damaged their ballot, need language or voting assistance, or need to register to vote.”

One of their proposals is to offer in-person voting centers at a ratio of no less than one center per 10,000 voters across the state, open for at least four days prior to Election Day. The goal will be to spread voters out over those days to avoid any unsafe gatherings at the polling sites. Materials will be sent out to voters saying that, if they cannot submit a vote-by-mail ballot, they should try to avoid in-person voting at peak times. The Senate version of the bill also specifically encourages local officials to establish drive-through ballot drop-off points (and authorizes setting up voting centers in “locations whose primary purpose is the sale and dispensation of alcoholic beverages” where needed).

Running these facilities safely will require setting them up to accomodate physical distancing, educating poll workers on health concerns as well as election rules, and issuing adequate disinfectant and PPE supplies to every poll center. Those costs and others taken on by local agencies to carry out the election would be reimbursed by the state.

For those who can submit their ballot by mail, the bills would require officials in every county across California to automatically mail ballots to every voter registered for the November 2, 2020 election. Those ballots would go out by 29 days prior; under the proposed law, election official would be able to begin tabulating the results as soon as they received them, though no information about the tally could be released prior to 8 p.m. on Election Day. The bills would also extend the deadline for accepting the ballots until the 20th day after Election Day or two days prior to the certification of results in the presidential race, whichever date is later.

Even if the bills pass, their own authors admit, pandemic conditions might mean the governor has to take executive action to override the legislation at the last minute. “Uncertainty about the status of the pandemic may remain well into November and beyond,” reads the letter from Umberg and Berman. “If the pandemic persists or resurges, nothing would prohibit you from taking dramatic steps to adjust in-person voting requirements at the last minute if public safety requires.”


RELATED: City Attorney Mike Feuer Tells Us About His ‘Neighborhood Centered’ Run for Mayor


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