California Judicial Council votes to end emergency zero bail schedule


(KRON) – As California begins to reopen, the Judicial Council voted to bring the emergency bail schedule to an end on June 20.

The council voted 17-2 to cancel the temporary $0 bail for those accused of lower-level crimes.

The temporary bail was put into place due to the COVID-19 pandemic and to help reduce the spread of the virus in jails.

“The Judicial Council’s action better reflects the current needs of our state, which has different health concerns and restrictions county-to-county based on the threat posed by COVID-19,” said Justice Marsha Slough, a Judicial Council member and chair of the Executive and Planning Committee. “We urge local courts to continue to use the emergency COVID-19 bail schedule where necessary to protect the health of the community, the courts, and the incarcerated. We are also asking courts to report back by June 20 on whether they plan to keep the COVID-19 emergency bail schedule, or another reduced bail schedule.”

Chief Justice Tani G Cantil-Sakauye also repealed the order which extended the time for defendants to be arraigned.

Defendants will once again be required to be arraigned within 48-hours.

13 rules to protect the health and safety of the public were adopted by the Judicial Council.

If health conditions worsen, the rules may resume, according to the council.

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