SACRAMENTO – Assembly Bill 924 authored by Assemblyman Frank Bigelow (R-O’Neals) was signed by Gov. Jerry Brown and will become law next year.
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“In California, there has been a rise in livestock theft resulting in significant costs to California’s ranchers. AB 924 is intended to discourage criminals from these costly crimes,” Bigelow said. “AB 924 ensures that criminals will be prosecuted and the roadmap to prosecution is clear if the law is violated. This bill is a win for rural California and California’s Agricultural Industry.”
AB 924 will establish a fine of up to $5,000 for anyone convicted of livestock theft and allows local officials to accurately track statistics on how many people have been convicted of stealing livestock. The proceeds that are collected from the fine will go to the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Bureau of Livestock Identification (BLID) to help bring closure to current open cases and to help combat future livestock theft.
The signing of AB 924 is momentous for the assemblyman as it marks his first bill to make it to the Governor’s Desk and leave with a signature.
“I am excited rural California has a voice, and the Legislature is listening,” said Bigelow. “I look forward to presenting more solutions for rural California in 2014 that can be supported by Governor Brown.”
Lifelong-rancher Bigelow represents the 5th Assembly District, which encompasses Alpine, Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Madera, Mariposa, Mono, Placer and Tuolumne counties and includes Lake Tahoe and Yosemite National Park.