Legislative Update 2019-07-15 | Homeless Students

The Legislature is now on Summer Recess.  They officially went on recess on July 12. The Legislature will return on August 12.  Although the Legislature is in recess, CCUPCA will be active implementing the Active Shooter Budget item.  We will be working with the Office of Emergency Services to develop the guidelines for the grant program whereby schools and colleges will be able to receive grants in order to implement interoperability technology on campuses.  Measured against the backdrop of increasing numbers of active shooter incidents, this grant program is literally lifesaving.

Assembly Bill 302: Homeless Students

Shortly before breaking for Summer Recess, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed Assembly Bill 302, the bill relating to parking for homeless community college students.  The bill was amended by that committee, so it is different from its original iteration.

In its current form, AB 302 provides that if a community college has parking facilities on campus, the governing board of the community college district shall grant overnight access to a homeless student for the purpose of sleeping overnight.  The bill provides that the governing body of the district, shall, with participation of student representatives, determine a plan of action to implement the overnight program.  There are certain elements that must be included in that implementation:

  1. There must be a definition of homeless youth that is consistent with federal law and reflects the age of the homeless student population on the campus.
  2. There must be overnight parking monitoring and a procedure for reporting and responding to threats to the safety of participating students.
  3. Every homeless student desiring to participate must fill out an overnight parking form. That form shall clearly indicate that the district cannot insure the safety of the student who participates in the program
  4. The parking areas that will be designated for the program must be specifically designated.
  5. There must be accessible bathroom facilities that are in reasonable proximity to the parking area.
  6. Parking assessment fees must be waived.
  7. The student is bound by overnight parking rules, which must include at least a zero-tolerance policy on alcohol and drugs. In addition, other reasonable rules may be promulgated.
  8. The hours of operation may be limited.
  9. To be eligible, a student must be enrolled in at least six hours per semester or the quarterly equivalent.
  10. There must be a procedure for identifying the student vehicle.
  11. A student who has engaged in behavior that causes substantial threat to the physical safety of other students is subject to having his or her overnight permit revoked.

The provisions of AB 302 do not apply to any community college campus that does the following:

  1. Provide for emergency grants to secure or prevent the imminent loss of housing.
  2. Provide hotel vouchers through a public agency or community organization.
  3. Rapid rehousing referral services.

 

Please note that AB 302 only requires that the homeless student be provided overnight parking. Unless the district chooses to, there is no requirement for overnight parking for non-students, nor are there any provisions which permit the student to share his or her overnight parking vehicle with anyone associated with the covered student.

The entire bill will sunset December 31, 2022.

AB 302 is now in the Senate Appropriations Committee where action is expected around August 30.  After it is acted on by the full Senate it will return to the Assembly for concurrence in Senate amendments before being transmitted to the Governor for action.