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February 21, 2007 - The Governor proposes to place a $2 billion bond issue on the ballot for courthouse construction and to establish public-private partnerships to leverage additional resources for this purpose. We withhold recommendation on the bond issue pending further review, but recommend rejection of the legislation for the partnerships.
January 31, 2007 - In an effort to put the current discussion of crime in California in perspective, we have prepared this report to answer several key questions, including:
October 3, 2006 - Presented To: Assembly and Senate Public Safety Committees
August 18, 2006 - Presented to Special Session Committee on Correctional Policy and Fiscal Issues
August 16, 2006 - Presented to Select Committee on Prison Population Management and Capacity
August 15, 2006 - Presented to Select Committee on Prison Population Management and Capacity
May 2, 2006 - Presented to Joint Hearing of Assembly Budget Subcommittees No. 1, 4, and 5
March 29, 2006 - Presented to the Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Subcommittee No. 4.
February 23, 2006 - The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s telemedicine program allows the department to deliver health care services to inmates without transporting them to outside medical facilities. Our review finds that opportunities exist for the department to significantly expand its use of telemedicine, thereby improving public safety and reducing the cost of providing inmate health care. We recommend legislation be enacted that requires the department to take steps to expand the use of telemedicine in prisons, which would potentially reduce transportation and medical guarding costs by several million dollars.
February 23, 2006 - Some county jails utilize non-peace officer personnel (“custody assistants”) for custody-related tasks that do not require direct control of inmates. Instead of using such “custody assistants,” state prisons rely on correctional officers for all custody-related work. The creation and use of a custody assistant classification in state prisons would reduce state costs and improve efficiency, while reducing staff vacancies in state prisons.
February 23, 2006 - The Governor’s budget includes funds to develop and expand a number of prison inmate and parole programs designed to reduce recidivism. While some aspects of this proposal have merit, many aspects lack important staffing and implementation details, and it is questionable that the department will be able to successfully implement so many programs at one time. We identify steps that the state should take to improve programming in state prisons, and recommend a reduction of approximately $28 million pending receipt and review of additional information.
February 23, 2006 - The Governor’s budget proposes to expand the use of formula-based budgeting to the entire Judicial Branch. However, the proposal lacks a clear policy rationale and would likely lead to over budgeting of the courts. We recommend rejection of this proposal.
February 23, 2006 - Proposition 36 provided annual appropriations from the General Fund through 2005-06 to implement a voter-approved initiative requiring drug treatment instead of incarceration in prison or jail for certain nonviolent drug possession offenders. The guaranteed appropriations for Proposition 36 are expiring, giving the Legislature discretion now to determine the level of funding for this measure. We comment on how the funding level should be set and proposals for making policy changes in the Proposition 36 law.