RBOC Supporting Measure to Clarify BUI Law

RBOC is supporting AB 1829 [Levine] that would clarify current law pertaining to boating under the influence [BUI] as the measure is considered in the Senate Committee on Public Safety.

RBOC supports the provisions of AB 1829 that would conform the advisement provisions of the Penal Code related to BUI, to existing provisions in the Harbors and Navigation Code. 

The measure would amend Harbors and Navigation Code Section 655.1. The revision would clarify that an officer who arrests a person on suspicion of operating a vessel or watercraft while under the influence shall inform the person that:

  • He or she may be charged with a crime,
  • He or she has the right to refuse chemical testing, and
  • The officer has the authority to seek a search warrant to compel a blood draw if the person refuses to submit to, or fails to complete, a blood test.

This provision would replace the obsolete provision in the current law. That provision requires an officer to inform a person arrested for a BUI that his or her refusal to submit to, or failure to complete, the required chemical testing may be used against the person in a court of law and that the court may impose increased penalties for that refusal or failure, upon conviction. Neither of those statements is accurate.

AB 1829 has already passed the Assembly. The measure is sponsored by the California State Sheriffs' Association.