The new California Law SB 10 bill is something that will be affecting the bail bonds industry, as well as those who commit crimes. In current law, judges or magistrates take in all accounts of the crime that was committed, and then set a bail that they deem appropriate. Many times, if the given bail cannot be paid, defendants will be detained pretrial. This new bill will implement a revised pretrial release procedure. In other words, this bill will ensure that people are not held in pretrial detention simply because they cannot afford to pay their bail. Governor Jerry Brown recently announced some new developments on the SB 10 bill.

The passage below is a message from PBUS President Beth Chapman, about those developments.
“Dear colleagues and members

We have received some great news today out of California. The Governor, Jerry Brown, announced today he wanted SB10 to be a 2 year bill. This is parliamentary issue that usually deals with bills that have a fiscal impact. Basically the Governor stated the he has concerns about the cost and wants the bill held until next year. He also stated that he wants to bail industry involved in the changes that will occur. Though this is a very positive step I would like everyone to keep two things in mind.

First this should be looked at as a strategic retreat by the proponents of no money bail. This in no way indicates a surrender or a defeat. I assure you, if the authors felt that it could have passed then it would be going forward. This delay will give the industry time to solidify our strategy and continue our PR campaign but this bill will come back. There has been tireless work put into fighting this bill and the results are clearly evident.

Secondly, although the Governor has stated that he wants the bail industry involved we should not forget the fact that this bill and any like it do not represent a “bail reform” but rather a “bail destruction”. Just look to New Jersey to see what these policies will do to the bail industry. We will absolutely be at the table to discuss and fix areas where the current system is lacking but we will not be party to a bill that will destroy the bail industry. Bail is the most cost effective and performance effective method of ensuring the defendant’s appearance while protecting the public and we will always fight to ensure law abiding citizens are the primary motive behind any reform.

This has been one of the most aggressively fought bills to date and many elements in our industry came together to pull off this win. We must continue to work united and use California as an example of how we can accomplish great things together.

This also highlights the importance of HR2152, our congressional bill requiring pre-trial programs with taxpayer funding to disclose data about the programs such as crime data, return rates, costs, etc. This bill should be a no brainer but the proponents of pre-trial will fight tooth and nail against this bill because they can’t manipulate the narrative with false numbers if it passes. We have got to do everything in our power as an industry to ensure passage of this bill in congress.

Tonight we celebrate and lift a toast to the great work accomplished but tomorrow we get back in the saddle and continue with fervent vigor to defeat these policies. We all stand with California and congratulate all of those who have worked so hard on this win. We will continue to stand with California in their fight to come.

-Beth Chapman

More information concerning SB10 and other legislation concerning the bail bond industry can be found at