Supervisors to propose public safety commission

Los Angeles County Seal.

A new public safety commission is being proposed by Fifth District Supervisor Kathryn Barger and Fourth District Supervisor Janice Hahn at the Board of Supervisors meeting on Aug. 15.

The “Blue Ribbon Commission on Public Safety” would seek solutions to criminal justice challenges through statewide reform, according to Barger.

“We have an opportunity to work collaboratively with all of our stakeholders to identify and implement lasting and meaningful solutions to these important goals, which are not mutually exclusive,” Barger said in a statement.

“Supervisor Hahn and I will call on our colleagues to support us in our collective goal of delivering meaningful treatment programs, as well as enhancing public safety, including for our brave men and women in law enforcement.”

This effort is related to a motion proposed and passed by Barger and Hahn in February, which requested a report and historical analysis of the murder of Whittier Police Officer Keith Boyer.

The February report discussed the gunman’s probation supervision and involvement with California’s parole system. Also, it included recommendations for policies and procedures to identify risk factors and ensure public safety, Barger’s office said.

“The tragic murder of Whittier Police Officer Keith Boyer has raised real questions about the county’s policies and procedures regarding probation and our ability to adapt to statewide reforms,” Hahn said in a statement.  “Public safety is our first priority.  This commission would give us an opportunity to have this long-overdue conversation and allow us to take a critical look at our public safety policies.”

Commissioners would include representatives from the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs’ Association, League of California Cities Association, California State Association of Counties, Los Angeles Regional Reentry Partnership, the Office of Diversion and Re-entry and the Departments of Mental Health and Public Health, as well as nine other justice partners.

Additionally, the commission would be staffed by the Countywide Criminal Justice Coordination Committee and co-chaired by the Probation Chief and the District Attorney’s Office.

If approved, the commission will have to provide a status report to the board every 90 days for a year. After the year, the commission will sunset.

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