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2011 Public Safety Realignment Legislation

Autor:   •  July 22, 2012  •  Research Paper  •  764 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,116 Views

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2011 Public Safety Realignment Legislation

Under the Governor Jerry Brown's realignment plan (Assembly Bill 109), the responsibility of incarcerating and rehabilitating certain criminal offenders is transferring from the state to the counties. This new policy went into effect on October 1st 2011. As a result, more inmates are housed in county jail facilities instead of the state prisons increasing the workload of local law enforcement, especially county sheriffs that mostly run the local jails, already have limited resources. When AB 109 takes effect, moving thirty thousand plus inmates from state prisons to local facilities will have an effect on the community and local and state law enforcement. "Democrat and Republican governors across the country are working to cut costs and lower taxes, but Governor Brown's plan to level California's $26 billion deficit that is the result of several years of out of control government spending and is a realignment that extends the ineffective tax hikes, also it transfers the state's financial burden onto the shoulders of cash-strapped county and municipal governments, creating a huge threat to California's economic recovery and public safety (Gabrielson, 2011)."

According to Gabrielson (2011), "many county sheriffs express concerns that they do not have enough money to house, feed, and secure a huge population of convicted felons. The legislation does not direct dollars toward the prison realignment. The law will shift inmates convicted of crimes considered not serious, nonviolent, and nonsexual called "triple-nons," to county jails. Keeping that population out of state prisons would save California's general fund an estimated $458 million, according to the governor's office, and significantly ease overcrowding at the state corrections facilities." Because of varying county practices, every California County will be affected differently. According to The Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice (2011), 34 counties in California have insufficient local jail space because of sending their inmates to state prisons, which is severely contributing to the overcrowding problem. Twenty Four counties, including San Francisco County are experiencing "under crowding," and they have more than sufficient jail space because of this practice.

According to Antonovich (2011), "Los Angeles County's jail system, the largest in the nation, is already challenged with rampant violence and illness among detainees because of severe overcrowding conditions. Los Angeles County jails operate under strict federal court-appointed ACLU monitors, who cite overcrowding as the root cause of problems long-plaguing the Los Angeles County Men's Central Jail. Dumping state felons into overcrowded jails means increased disruption, violence, and liability. An older state contract was terminated when

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