The Arizona Police Association (APA) is a state labor group made up of more than 12,000 officers and over 50 police agencies. One of its primary purposes is to protect the interests of Arizona law enforcement, corrections, detention and probation officers in the legislative process on the local, state and national levels.
The Arizona State Legislature began its 56th session on January 10, 2022. So far, 1,512 bills have been introduced. Here are some of the proposed law-enforcement-related bills that are being monitored by the APA and its lobbying firm, Willetta Partners.
Bills Supported by the APA
HB 2159: Law enforcement officers; polygraph; examinations: This is our 38-1100 Officer Bill of Rights legislation, and it has four main components:
- 38-1104 and 38-1108: Eliminates the use of polygraphs in administrative investigations. Although most agencies rarely use them now due to their unreliability, this bill will eliminate their use statewide.
- 38-1106: Affirmatively allows the hearing officer in an administrative appeal to consider as a mitigating factor any violation of 38-1100 in the determination of discipline.
- 38-1110: In the event of multiple officers involved in the same investigation, if it is determined that any individual officer has not committed any wrongdoing, that officer must be provided a notice of findings and exited out of the investigation as it proceeds. The officer would still be under advisement not to speak about the investigation.
- 38-1112: Adds psychological examinations to fitness-for-duty exams. The current law is silent on psychological exams. This provision provides the same protections and procedures for psychological exams as it does for physical exams. It also now requires the agency to provide the officer with a copy of the medical report within five days of the department receiving it.
HB 2248: Failure to return vehicle; repeal: This bill would repeal ARS 13-1813, stolen vehicle-security interest. This law essentially makes the police the repo men for used car dealers and auto loan companies.
HB 2319: Law enforcement activity; recording prohibition: This bill would make it illegal to record an officer without permission within 15 feet of law enforcement activity.
HB 2341: Appropriations; corrections officers; salary increase: This bill seeks to increase the pay of Arizona corrections officers.
HB 2342: Appropriations; DPS; salary increase: This bill seeks to increase the pay of Arizona state troopers.
HB 2343: Interfering with a crime scene investigation; classification: This bill would classify disobeying a peace officer’s verbal order to remain off the premises of a possible crime scene as a Class 1 misdemeanor.
HB 2349: Peace officer standards board; membership: This bill would change the requirement so that one of the two officer representatives will no longer have to be a deputy (a deputy can still serve as one of the officers). Both officers must still be non-supervisors.
HB 2354: Tuition; family; post-traumatic stress; suicide: This bill would provide free college tuition at any state university for the surviving dependents of police, firefighters and veterans who suffer from duty-related PTSI and subsequently commit suicide.
HB 2589: DOC officers; personnel system; covered: Several years ago, sworn Arizona Department of Corrections supervisors lost their employment protections and became “at-will” employees. This bill attempts to reinstate those employment protections.
SB 1268: PSPRS; deferred retirement option plan: This bill would extend the current DROP plan from five to seven years. It would likely have a different rate of return from the original DROP plan. This is to encourage and incentivize officers to stay longer to help address the current staffing crisis. The bill would also create a task force to address possible plan improvements to tiers 2 and 3 to assist in recruitment and retention of officers. (Note: This bill is currently being drafted through the stakeholder process.)
Bills Opposed by the APA
HB 2222: Independent corrections oversight committee: This bill would create a very heavyweight inmate advocacy oversight board.
HB 2309: Detained juveniles; advisements; notifications: This bill would require the arresting officer to immediately advise an arrest juvenile of their rights and to notify the parents of the juvenile arrest within 90 minutes.
HB 2358: Sexual assault; survivors rights: This bill has some issues of concern as to implementation and operational impact, as well as investigative and prosecution compromise, such as providing an unredacted copy of the investigation at any time the victim asks for it.
HB 2518: Peace officers; liability; unlawful acts: This bill would eliminate qualified immunity.
HB 2688: Prisoner searches; requirements: This bill would place safety and operational challenges on DOC officers’ ability to conduct inmate searches.
SB 1166: Public employers: public monies: contracts: union activities: standing: state preemption: definitions: This bill would eliminate public employer union contracts and union activities, including being able to lobby or advocate for a political candidate.
For further information and updates on these and other current bills, please check the Arizona Legislature’s bill status inquiry page at apps.azleg.gov/BillStatus/BillOverview, or visit the APA website at azpolice.org.