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SF 515

as introduced - 83rd Legislature (2003 - 2004) Posted on 12/15/2009 12:00am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.
  1.1                          A bill for an act 
  1.2             relating to criminal justice; expanding permitted uses 
  1.3             of funds in automobile theft prevention special 
  1.4             revenue account; modifying structure of financial 
  1.5             crimes task force and modifying related policies; 
  1.6             repealing sunset provision; making clarifying changes; 
  1.7             amending Minnesota Statutes 2002, sections 168A.40; 
  1.8             299A.68; 299A.75, subdivisions 1, 3. 
  1.10     Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 168A.40, is 
  1.11  amended to read: 
  1.14     Subd. 3.  [SURCHARGE.] Each insurer engaged in the writing 
  1.15  of policies of automobile insurance shall collect a surcharge, 
  1.16  at the rate of 50 cents per vehicle for every six months of 
  1.17  coverage, on each policy of automobile insurance providing 
  1.18  comprehensive insurance coverage issued or renewed in this 
  1.19  state.  The surcharge may not be considered premium for any 
  1.20  purpose, including the computation of premium tax or agents' 
  1.21  commissions.  The amount of the surcharge must be separately 
  1.22  stated on either a billing or policy declaration sent to an 
  1.23  insured.  Insurers shall remit the revenue derived from this 
  1.24  surcharge at least quarterly to the commissioner of public 
  1.25  safety for purposes of the financial crimes task force described 
  1.26  in section 299A.68 and the automobile theft prevention program 
  1.27  described in section 299A.75.  For purposes of this subdivision, 
  2.1   "policy of automobile insurance" has the meaning given it in 
  2.2   section 65B.14, covering only the following types of vehicles as 
  2.3   defined in section 168.011: 
  2.4      (1) a passenger automobile; 
  2.5      (2) a pickup truck; 
  2.6      (3) a van but not commuter vans as defined in section 
  2.7   168.126; or 
  2.8      (4) a motorcycle, 
  2.9   except that no vehicle with a gross vehicle weight in excess of 
  2.10  10,000 pounds is included within this definition. 
  2.12  A special revenue account is created in the state treasury to be 
  2.13  credited with the proceeds of the surcharge imposed under 
  2.14  subdivision 3.  Of the revenue in the account, $1,300,000 each 
  2.15  year must be transferred to the general fund.  Revenues in 
  2.16  excess of $1,300,000 each year may be used only for the 
  2.17  financial crimes task force described in section 299A.68 or the 
  2.18  automobile theft prevention program described in section 299A.75.
  2.19     Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 299A.68, is 
  2.20  amended to read: 
  2.22  FORCE.] 
  2.24  group of two or more local governmental units may enter into an 
  2.25  agreement to establish a major The Minnesota financial crimes 
  2.26  investigation task force is established to investigate major 
  2.27  financial crimes.  Local law enforcement agencies, federal law 
  2.28  enforcement agencies, and state and federal prosecutor's offices 
  2.29  may join the Minnesota financial crimes task force, subject to 
  2.30  the provisions of this section. 
  2.31     Subd. 2.  [INVESTIGATION TASK FORCE'S DUTIES.] (a) The 
  2.32  investigation task force shall investigate consumer identity 
  2.33  theft cases and reported financial crimes from individuals and 
  2.34  businesses who that are victims of such crimes.  
  2.35     (b) The investigation task force shall focus on financial 
  2.36  crimes including, but not limited to, statewide crimes such as:  
  3.1   theft, fraud, and forgery crimes, including identity theft, 
  3.2   check forgery, fraud in obtaining credit, financial transaction 
  3.3   card fraud, theft from merchants, possession or sale of stolen 
  3.4   or counterfeit checks, issuance of dishonored checks, creation 
  3.5   or use of counterfeit state identification, obtaining 
  3.6   counterfeit state identification, fraudulent Internet 
  3.7   transactions, fraudulent merchandise returns, investment fraud, 
  3.8   insurance fraud, vehicle insurance fraud, financial institution 
  3.9   fraud, fraud related to state or federal programs, tax fraud, 
  3.10  mail and wire fraud, and other related financial crimes.  
  3.11     (c) In particular, the investigation task force shall 
  3.12  investigate individuals and organizations, based on their 
  3.13  criminal activity, who that: 
  3.14     (1) commit multiple, cross-jurisdictional, financial 
  3.15  crimes; 
  3.16     (2) employ computers and other sophisticated technology to 
  3.17  counterfeit documents or commit fraud; or 
  3.18     (3) illegally obtain consumer information for identity 
  3.19  theft. 
  3.21  UNITS AGENCIES.] (a) The local governmental units agencies 
  3.22  that agree to form and participate in a single, centralized, the 
  3.23  statewide financial crimes investigation task force shall 
  3.24  oversee the investigation task force's operation by establishing 
  3.25  procedures and guidelines in their an agreement.  The agreement 
  3.26  must be addressed in a memorandum of understanding and signed by 
  3.27  the person in charge of each participating local unit agency of 
  3.28  government.  The memorandum of understanding shall must address 
  3.29  the following: 
  3.30     (1) the command structure of the investigation task force; 
  3.31     (2) acquisition and liquidation of equipment, office space, 
  3.32  and transportation; 
  3.33     (3) procedures for contracting for necessary administrative 
  3.34  support; 
  3.35     (4) selection and assignment of members; 
  3.36     (5) transfer of investigation task force members; 
  4.1      (6) resolution of disputes between participating local 
  4.2   governmental units agencies; 
  4.3      (7) requirements and procedures for all workers' 
  4.4   compensation and other liability to remain the responsibility of 
  4.5   each member's employing agency; and 
  4.6      (8) disposition of assets and debts if the task force is 
  4.7   disbanded; and 
  4.8      (9) all other issues deemed pertinent by the participating 
  4.9   local governmental units agencies. 
  4.10     (b) Federal law enforcement agencies participating in the 
  4.11  task force must be signatories to the memorandum of 
  4.12  understanding.  Federal law enforcement agencies and officers 
  4.13  participating in the task force may not participate in the 
  4.14  selection of the statewide commander or receive any funding for 
  4.15  agents' salaries, benefits, or overtime. 
  4.16     Subd. 4.  [STATEWIDE COMMANDER.] The participating local 
  4.17  governmental units agencies shall select a commander to direct 
  4.18  the investigation task force.  The commander shall make tactical 
  4.19  decisions regarding the commencement, continuation, and 
  4.20  conclusion of investigations of crimes within the investigation 
  4.21  task force's jurisdiction in consultation with agencies 
  4.22  participating in the task force.  The commander shall also 
  4.23  report annually to the bureau of criminal apprehension 
  4.24  commissioner of public safety as required in subdivision 10. 
  4.25     Subd. 5.  [MEMBERS; EMPLOYMENT STATUS.] The investigation 
  4.26  task force may include law enforcement officers, prosecutors, 
  4.27  federal law enforcement officers, and investigators from local 
  4.28  governmental units who are selected by their supervisors to 
  4.29  participate in the investigation task force.  All law 
  4.30  enforcement officers selected to join the investigation task 
  4.31  force must be licensed peace officers under section 626.84, 
  4.32  subdivision 1, or qualified federal law enforcement officers as 
  4.33  defined in section 626.8453.  Members shall remain employees of 
  4.34  the same entity that employed them before joining the 
  4.35  investigation task force.  Compensation, personnel evaluations, 
  4.36  grievances, merit increases, and liability insurance coverage, 
  5.1   such as general, personal, vehicle, and professional liability 
  5.2   insurance, shall must be covered by each member's employing 
  5.3   agency.  Members of the financial crimes task force are not 
  5.4   employees of the state. 
  5.5      Subd. 6.  [JURISDICTION AND POWERS.] Law enforcement 
  5.6   officers who are members of the investigation task force shall 
  5.7   have statewide jurisdiction to conduct criminal investigations 
  5.8   into financial crimes as described in subdivision 2 and possess 
  5.9   the same powers of arrest as those possessed by a sheriff. 
  5.10     Officers assigned to the financial crimes task force shall 
  5.11  follow their county arrest procedures, booking processes, 
  5.12  reporting processes, county attorney charging requirements, and 
  5.13  appropriate notification protocols to local and county sheriff 
  5.14  agencies where arrests are made and search warrants executed.  
  5.15  The commander of the task force is responsible for ensuring 
  5.16  compliance with applicable local practices and procedures. 
  5.17     Subd. 6a.  [REGIONAL OFFICES.] The commander shall 
  5.18  establish seven regional offices of the task force to 
  5.19  investigate financial crimes throughout the state and the 
  5.20  regional areas.  The regional offices must originally be 
  5.21  established based on current state judicial districts, with one 
  5.22  regional office covering the first, second, fourth, and tenth 
  5.23  judicial districts.  The commander must establish a separate 
  5.24  regional office in each of the third, fifth, sixth, seventh, 
  5.25  eighth, and ninth judicial districts.  The regional offices must 
  5.26  be composed of participating agencies from each of the 
  5.27  designated geographic areas.  In consultation with the 
  5.28  commander, the participating agencies of each regional office 
  5.29  must select a supervisor to direct the office.  The regional 
  5.30  office supervisors must report to the commander.  If necessary, 
  5.31  the advisory committee established in subdivision 8 may modify 
  5.32  the geographic boundary of a regional office. 
  5.34  ENFORCEMENT OFFICES.] To the greatest degree possible, the 
  5.35  investigation task force shall cooperate and collaborate with 
  5.36  existing prosecutorial offices and law enforcement agencies. 
  6.2   ALLOCATION AND USE.] (a) The statewide commander shall establish 
  6.3   an operational budget and present it to an advisory committee 
  6.4   for approval.  Grants awarded to participating local agencies 
  6.5   must be approved by the advisory committee.  The advisory 
  6.6   committee must be composed of the statewide commander, a county 
  6.7   attorney from the metro area, a county attorney from greater 
  6.8   Minnesota, and the three chiefs of police or sheriffs from the 
  6.9   local law enforcement agencies that have the longest continuous 
  6.10  participation in the task force.  The committee shall appoint a 
  6.11  chair from among its members.  The statewide commander must not 
  6.12  be the chair of the committee.  The committee may adopt 
  6.13  procedures to govern its conduct if necessary.  A committee 
  6.14  member may appoint a designee to take the member's place.  The 
  6.15  commissioner of public safety shall serve as the fiscal agent 
  6.16  for the task force, accounting for all funds and contributions. 
  6.17     (b) A participating local governmental unit agency may seek 
  6.18  a grant for reimbursement for the time and resources that 
  6.19  a peace officer, investigator, detective, prosecutor, and the 
  6.20  prosecutor's administrative staff dedicate to the investigation 
  6.21  task force, or for any other task force-related purposes as 
  6.22  described in paragraph (d).  In order to receive a grant under 
  6.23  this subdivision, a participating local governmental unit agency 
  6.24  must provide a 25 20 percent match in nonstate funds or in-kind 
  6.25  contributions either directly from its budget or from businesses 
  6.26  directly donating support.  A participating prosecutor employee 
  6.27  shall remain an employee of the contributing county agency. 
  6.28     (c) For purposes of this subdivision, an "in-kind 
  6.29  contribution" means any asset contribution or personnel costs 
  6.30  not funded by this section, including office supplies, 
  6.31  furniture, office space, computers, software, equipment, 
  6.32  surveillance tools, and personnel benefits.  It also includes 
  6.33  contributions from federal agencies, businesses, nonprofit 
  6.34  organizations, individuals, or legal entities used for general 
  6.35  operations support and not directed toward the case of a 
  6.36  particular victim or business. 
  7.1      (d) Task force funds may be used for any task force-related 
  7.2   purpose including salaries, overtime, administration, office 
  7.3   costs, law enforcement equipment, computers, software, vehicle 
  7.4   expenses, travel, and training. 
  7.5      (e) The commissioner may transfer funds to the task force 
  7.6   from the fraud and theft prevention special revenue account for 
  7.7   the purposes described in this section. 
  7.8      Subd. 9.  [FORFEITURE.] Property seized by the 
  7.9   investigation task force is subject to forfeiture pursuant to 
  7.10  sections 609.531, 609.5312, 609.5313, and 609.5315 if ownership 
  7.11  cannot be established.  The investigation task force shall 
  7.12  receive the proceeds from the sale of all property that it 
  7.13  properly seizes and that is forfeited. 
  7.14     Subd. 10.  [REQUIRED REPORTS.] (a) Beginning June 30, 2002, 
  7.15  the commander of the investigation task force shall report 
  7.16  annually to the commissioner on the activities of the 
  7.17  investigation task force and the use of grants awarded under 
  7.18  Laws 2001, First Special Session chapter 8, article 4, section 
  7.19  10, subdivision 7. 
  7.20     (b) By March 1, 2003, the commissioner of public safety 
  7.21  shall report to the chairs and ranking minority members of the 
  7.22  house of representatives and senate committees and divisions 
  7.23  having jurisdiction over criminal justice policy and funding on 
  7.24  the activities of the investigation task force and the use of 
  7.25  grants awarded under Laws 2001, First Special Session chapter 8, 
  7.26  article 4, section 10, subdivision 7. 
  7.27     Subd. 11.  [EXPIRATION.] This section expires on June 30, 
  7.28  2003. 
  7.29     Subd. 12.  [MATCHING FEDERAL DOLLARS.] The task force may 
  7.30  accept grants or contributions from any federal source.  To the 
  7.31  extent that funds from the fraud and theft prevention account 
  7.32  are available for the purposes of this section, the funds must 
  7.33  be used to match any available federal grants or other 
  7.34  contributions according to the requirements of the federal 
  7.35  agency, entity, or law making or authorizing the grant or 
  7.36  contribution. 
  8.1      Subd. 13.  [TASK FORCE PERMANENT AND 
  8.2   ONGOING.] Notwithstanding section 15.059 to the contrary, the 
  8.3   Minnesota financial crimes task force does not expire. 
  8.4      [EFFECTIVE DATE.] This section is effective July 1, 2003. 
  8.5      Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 299A.75, 
  8.6   subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
  8.8   (a) The commissioner of public safety shall: 
  8.9      (1) develop and sponsor the implementation of statewide 
  8.10  plans, programs, and strategies to combat automobile theft, 
  8.11  improve the administration of the automobile theft laws, and 
  8.12  provide a forum for identification of critical problems for 
  8.13  those persons dealing with automobile theft; 
  8.14     (2) coordinate the development, adoption, and 
  8.15  implementation of plans, programs, and strategies relating to 
  8.16  interagency and intergovernmental cooperation with respect to 
  8.17  automobile theft enforcement; 
  8.18     (3) annually audit the plans and programs that have been 
  8.19  funded in whole or in part to evaluate the effectiveness of the 
  8.20  plans and programs and withdraw funding should the commissioner 
  8.21  determine that a plan or program is ineffective or is no longer 
  8.22  in need of further financial support from the fund; 
  8.23     (4) develop a plan of operation including: 
  8.24     (i) an assessment of the scope of the problem of automobile 
  8.25  theft, including areas of the state where the problem is 
  8.26  greatest; 
  8.27     (ii) an analysis of various methods of combating the 
  8.28  problem of automobile theft; 
  8.29     (iii) a plan for providing financial support to combat 
  8.30  automobile theft; 
  8.31     (iv) a plan for eliminating car hijacking; and 
  8.32     (v) an estimate of the funds required to implement the 
  8.33  plan; and 
  8.34     (5) distribute money pursuant to subdivision 3 from the 
  8.35  automobile fraud and theft prevention special revenue account 
  8.36  for automobile theft prevention activities, including: 
  9.1      (i) paying the administrative costs of the program; 
  9.2      (ii) providing financial support to the state patrol and 
  9.3   local law enforcement agencies for automobile theft enforcement 
  9.4   teams; 
  9.5      (iii) providing financial support to state or local law 
  9.6   enforcement agencies for programs designed to reduce the 
  9.7   incidence of automobile theft and for improved equipment and 
  9.8   techniques for responding to automobile thefts; 
  9.9      (iv) providing financial support to local prosecutors for 
  9.10  programs designed to reduce the incidence of automobile theft; 
  9.11     (v) providing financial support to judicial agencies for 
  9.12  programs designed to reduce the incidence of automobile theft; 
  9.13     (vi) providing financial support for neighborhood or 
  9.14  community organizations or business organizations for programs 
  9.15  designed to reduce the incidence of automobile theft and to 
  9.16  educate people about the common methods of automobile theft, the 
  9.17  models of automobiles most likely to be stolen, and the times 
  9.18  and places automobile theft is most likely to occur; and 
  9.19     (vii) providing financial support for automobile theft 
  9.20  educational and training programs for state and local law 
  9.21  enforcement officials, driver and vehicle services exam and 
  9.22  inspections staff, and members of the judiciary. 
  9.23     (b) The commissioner may not spend in any fiscal year more 
  9.24  than ten percent of the money in the fund for the program's 
  9.25  commissioner's administrative and operating costs relating to 
  9.26  this section and section 299A.68.  The commissioner is annually 
  9.27  appropriated and must distribute the amount of the proceeds 
  9.28  credited to the automobile fraud and theft prevention special 
  9.29  revenue account each year, less the transfer of $1,300,000 each 
  9.30  year to the general fund described in section 168A.40, 
  9.31  subdivision 4.  The commissioner may direct that the proceeds be 
  9.32  utilized for the purposes permitted in this section or in 
  9.33  section 299A.68.  
  9.34     Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 299A.75, 
  9.35  subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
  9.36     Subd. 3.  [GRANT CRITERIA; APPLICATION.] (a) A county 
 10.1   attorney's office, law enforcement agency, neighborhood 
 10.2   organization, community organization, or business organization 
 10.3   may apply for a grant under this section.  Multiple offices or 
 10.4   agencies within a county may apply for a grant under this 
 10.5   section. 
 10.6      (b) The commissioner must develop criteria for the fair 
 10.7   distribution of grants from the automobile portion of the fraud 
 10.8   and theft prevention account allotted for purposes of this 
 10.9   section that address the following factors: 
 10.10     (1) the number of reported automobile thefts per capita in 
 10.11  a city, county, or region, not merely the total number of 
 10.12  automobile thefts; 
 10.13     (2) the population of the jurisdiction of the applicant 
 10.14  office or agency; 
 10.15     (3) the total funds distributed within a county or region; 
 10.16  and 
 10.17     (4) the statewide interest in automobile theft reduction. 
 10.18     (c) The commissioner may give priority to: 
 10.19     (1) offices and agencies engaged in a collaborative effort 
 10.20  to reduce automobile theft; and 
 10.21     (2) counties or regions with the greatest rates of 
 10.22  automobile theft. 
 10.23     (d) The minimum amount of a grant award is $5,000.  After 
 10.24  considering the automobile theft rate and total population of an 
 10.25  applicant's jurisdiction, if a grant award, as determined under 
 10.26  the criteria and priorities in this subdivision, would be less 
 10.27  than $5,000, it must not be awarded.