Sacramento – Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed three pieces of legislation authored by Assemblywoman Sharon Runner (R-Lancaster). AB 361 and AB 1517 fight identity theft by strengthening accountability for the practices of notaries and ensuring that convicted criminals cannot access medical information. AB 646 prohibits the body piercing of minors without parental consent.
Runner commented, "In signing this legislation, Governor Schwarzenegger continues to demonstrate his strong leadership on issues that are important to the people of California. One's rights as a parent as well as one's identity are two commodities that we must constantly protect in this day and age."
Notaries, appointed by the state government, acknowledge the signing of important documents that oftentimes contain sensitive information. AB 361 closes a loophole in the notary process by clarifying the crime of forgery to include the issuance of an acknowledgement that one knows to be false. It also criminalizes various other illegal notarization acts.
California's Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) reviews patients' medical records while performing oversight for Health Maintenance Organizations. AB 1517 protects consumer privacy by allowing DMHC to check the background of prospective employees before hiring them into positions with access to personal information.
AB 646 reenacts and makes permanent a repealed law that prohibited the body piercing of minors without parental consent. The original law, authored by then-Assemblyman George Runner, expired on January 1st of this year.
"It is always exciting to see good legislation passed into law," stated Runner. "Each one of these bills will make a positive impact on our state."