The Assembly Public Safety Committee today approved Senate Bill 448, which would require some registered citizens to reveal their internet identifiers to local law enforcement. Included within the bill are registered citizens convicted of possessing child pornography on January 1, 2017, or later.
The Committee passed the bill unanimously despite testimony in opposition to the bill from six representatives of California RSOL and the Public Defenders Association. The ACLU, which previously opposed the bill, stated during the hearing that they no longer opposed the bill, but did not give a reason for their changed position.
“Senate Bill 448 violates the First Amendment because it chills speech and is not narrowly tailored,” testified CA RSOL president Janice Bellucci.
Before voting in favor of the bill, Assemblyman Bill Quirk stated that “the courts will decide” whether SB 448 is constitutional. He praised the author of the bill for amendments to the bill including one that reduced the penalty for violations to a misdemeanor offense.
There are two legislative steps left before the bill is finally passed: consideration by the Assembly Appropriations Committee and the full Assembly. If the bill is passed by the Assembly, the Governor must sign it before it becomes law.