SACRAMENTO – The Senate Public Safety Committee unanimously passed Senate Bill 224 on a bipartisan vote which was introduced by Senate Republican Leader Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) and would assist California farmers from combat rural agricultural theft. To view the committee hearing, please click here: https://vimeo.com/328034706
SB 224 would:
- Create a new category for grand theft of agricultural property.
- Require that the fines collected be redistributed back to current agriculture and rural-based crime prevention programs.
“Agricultural theft is a huge loss to our local farmers and more needs to be done to assist our law enforcement combat agricultural crime which is a $2 million loss in Tulare County. Equipment carefully purchased by farmers over the years is not cheap. When thieves steal the equipment, it also affects consumers because they feel the sting of having to pay more for their fruits and vegetables,” said Leader Grove.
Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux is a sponsor of SB 224 and attended the committee hearing to testify in support of the legislation and to provide statistics on the issue of agricultural theft.
"I stand with Senator Grove in support of Senate Bill 224. By making agricultural theft a separate crime and redirecting money from fines back into rural crime programs, we could truly help fund desperately needed resources to stop the theft efforts here in California,” said Tulare County Sheriff Boudreaux
SB 224 will now head to the Senate Appropriations Committee.