This Thursday, the Senate Budget Committee will have the first of many hearings to discuss the 2014-15 corrections budget.
It is very important that you weigh in to focus the budget on people and restoring the terrible cuts to social services, rather than sinking more money into prison and jail expansion.
Here are a few of my thoughts on the Governor’s prison budget:
Good: Parole and Sentencing Reforms
- Mandatory split-sentencing at the county-level
- Expansion of medical parole
- Prospective good-time credits for non-violent 2nd strikers
- Implementation of elder parole
Bad: More Expensive Foot Dragging on the Court Order
- Assumes a 2 year extension on the Court Order to reduce prison crowding
- Growth in the prison population by 6.9% in 2014-15
- Total Corrections budget will grow by $600 million to $9.8 billion
Ugly: Lots of costly prison and jail expansion plans
- $500 milllion more jail construction dollars
- Activation of beds at the Northern CA Reentry Facility, Dewitt Nelson & prison hospitals
- 6,292 additional out‑of‑state beds by June 30, 2014
The full Budget and Fiscal Review Committee hearing of the Corrections Budget is this Thursday at 9:30 am in room 4203 Come if you can.
Please join me now, in letting the budget committee know that we must start making thoughtful restorations to education and anti-poverty programs, and stop throwing our tax dollars down the rathole of incarceration.
Legislative Director for the Friends Committee on Legislation of California
& member of CURB