As this Associated Press article explains,
on Tuesday, the obscure state agency sent prison officials a blistering 21-page "decision of disapproval of regulatory action."
Among its many objections, the office said the proposed regulations conflict with state law by explicitly authorizing media witnesses to the executions. Reporters have attended all 13 executions since their resumption in the state after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling 1976.
There are 702 inmates with a death sentence living in California prisons
Office of Administrative Law Deputy Director Linda Brown said the state law spelling out who may witness an execution doesn't include reporters, but the proposed regulations do. She said either the regulations have to be redrafted to eliminate explicit mention of the media or the Legislature needs to change the language of the law to specifically authorize the attendance of reporters.
She said the same goes for representatives of the governor's office and the inspector general, whom the proposed regulations allow as witnesses but who are not specifically authorized to attend by the law.
Brown speculated that reporters and the others have been allowed to attend as the "at least 12 reputable citizens" the San Quentin warden must select to witness each execution.
Brown said the office found five passages to be unclear, including how the death warrant is to be presented to the inmate scheduled for execution.
The timing of this delay coincides with the meeting of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty, in which we'll discuss, among other things, American exceptionalism and the effect of global strategies on U.S. policies.
found via our friends at Sentencing Law and Policy.