Gloria Bill Ending ICE’s Practice of Accessing Public Utility Data to Facilitate Deportations Heads to Governor

Monday, August 31, 2020

Legislature Approves Gloria Bill to Prevent Sharing of Gas & Electric Customer Data for Immigration Actions

SACRAMENTO, CA – A bill by California State Assemblymember Todd Gloria (D-San Diego) that would end ICE’s practice of accessing gas and electric customer utility data to facilitate deportations is now headed to Governor Newsom’s desk. Today, the Legislature officially approved Assembly Bill 2788 (AB 2788) which will prevent electric and gas utilities from disclosing a customer’s electric or gas consumption data with immigrations authorities without a subpoena or judicial warrant.

ICE has repeatedly accessed public utility customer data to learn not only where a person lives, but when they’re home – and it’s being done without a court order,” said Assemblymember Todd Gloria. “I’m grateful that my legislative colleagues are joining me to help end this wrongful practice in California, and I urge the Governor to sign this bill into law so that we rightly protect our residents. Now more than ever, Californians deserve to feel safe in their home.”

Current law prohibits public utilities from releasing smart meter data usage to a commercial third party without a customer’s consent, unless there is a subpoena. ICE commonly circumvents this process by using their own administrative subpoenas instead of securing judicial authority. AB 2788 will close this gap in existing law and require a court-ordered subpoena or warrant.