Summary: S.1043 — 102nd Congress (1991-1992)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.1043. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in Senate (05/14/1991)

Police Officer's Bill of Rights Act of 1991 - Amends the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 to provide that, except when on duty or acting in an official capacity, no law enforcement officer (officer) shall be prohibited from engaging in political activity or be denied the right to refrain from engaging in such activity.

Sets forth minimum standards that shall apply when an officer is under investigation or is subjected to questioning under circumstances that could lead to disciplinary action, including that: (1) questioning be conducted at a reasonable hour, and take place at the offices of those conducting the investigation, with exceptions; (2) the officer under investigation be informed in writing of the nature of the investigation prior to questioning; (3) any questioning be for a reasonable period of time, allowing for reasonable periods for rest and personal necessities; (4) such questioning be recorded in full in writing or by electronic device, and a copy of the transcript made available to the officer under investigation; and (5) the officer be entitled to the presence of counsel or other individual at the questioning.

Requires the law enforcement agency to notify the officer that such officer is entitled to a hearing by a hearing officer or board, with exceptions for summary punishment or emergency suspension for misconduct. Specifies that an emergency suspension shall not affect the officer's health benefits.

Sets forth provisions: (1) with respect to the composition of a disciplinary hearing board and procedures for a disciplinary hearing; and (2) limiting the penalty to that which was recommended by the trial board.

Provides for notice of disciplinary action. Bars any penalty or threat of penalty against the officer for the exercise of rights under this Act.

Prohibits: (1) a law enforcement agency from inserting any adverse material into the file of an officer unless such officer has had an opportunity to review and comment in writing on the adverse material; (2) requiring or requesting an officer to disclose personal property, income, assets, sources of income, debts, or expenditures (including those of any household member) unless the information is necessary in investigating a violation of law, rule, or regulation with respect to the performance of official duties, or where such disclosure is required by Federal, State, or local law; and (3) a State from having more than two legislative sessions to enact a Law Enforcement Officers' Bill of Rights that provides rights substantially similar to those afforded under this Act.

Authorizes a cause of action in State court by the officer for recovery of damages and full reinstatement against a law enforcement agency that materially violates rights afforded under this Act, subject to specified limitations. Specifies that the sovereign immunity of a State shall not apply in the case of such a violation.

Specifies that this Act does not preempt State law or collective bargaining agreements or discussions that provide rights for officers that are substantially similar to those afforded by this Act.