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California: Rebound Act Draft Legislation

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Senate or House Bill No. XXX

An act to add Chapter 10 (commencing with Section 3106) of Title 1 of Part 3 of the Penal Code, relating to parole.

SB/HB XXX, Criminal Recidivism.

Existing law authorizes the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to oversee programs for the purposes of reducing failure rates of parolees. This bill would authorize the state to annually allocate money to be used for specified purposes relating to improving parole supervision practices and capacities, as specified.

This bill would require the state to calculate the amount of money to be appropriated from the state by the Director of Finance with oversight provided by the Judicial Council.

This bill would specify that the calculation would be based on costs avoided by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation because of a reduction in the percentage of adult parolees who are returned to a period of incarceration in either jail or prison, as specified.

This bill would also require data collection to track specific outcome-based measures, as specified, by the Division of Rehabilitative Programs on the effectiveness of the programs. This bill would require the community corrections programs to be developed and implemented by the Division of Rehabilitative Programs.

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:

SECTION 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the Rebound Act of 2019.

SECTION. 2. Chapter 10 (commencing with Section 3106) is added to Title 1 of Part 3 of the Penal Code, to read:

Chapter 10. California Parole Performance Incentives

3106. The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:

(a)   As of September 2019, the parole population size was 51, 685 supervised individuals.

(b)   According to a 2012 report by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, more than 65 percent of those released from California’s prison system return within three years. Additionally, 73 percent of the those that did recidivate committed a new crime or violated parole within the first year. These numbers have not changed significantly over the years.

(c)    Parole begins upon the release of a prisoner. California has a term of almost mandatory parole for every person returning to society, whether they served an indeterminate or determinate sentence. Parole aims to supervise, treat, and prepare people to reenter society.

(d)   Providing sustainable funding for improved, evidence-based parole supervision practices and capacities will improve public safety outcomes. Improving parole performance, measured by a reduction in parolees returning to jail or prison because they were revoked on parole or convicted of another crime while on parole, will reduce the number of new admissions to state prison, saving taxpayer dollars and allowing a portion of those state savings to be redirected to parole to be invested in specific programs.

(e)   According to the Judicial Council of California, the similarly passed reform legislation for probation – SB678 – is highly successful. Specifically, evidence based programming implementation has led to substantial positive shifts in this type of supervision. Indeed, in 2010 only 21 percent of departments reported that most of their officers (i.e., 75 percent or more) were trained in cognitive behavioral therapy techniques. In 2018, this number had risen to 75 percent.

(f)    This bill aims to introduce and to implement some of the proven and effective policy changes that probation has experienced to parole.

3107. As used in this chapter, the following definitions apply:

(a)   “Parole programming” means a program established pursuant to this act consisting of a system of parole supervision services dedicated to all of the following goals:

1.     Enhancing public safety through the management and reduction of offender risk while under parole supervision and upon reentry from prison into the community.

2.     Providing a range of parole supervision tools, sanctions, and services applied to parolees based on a risk/needs assessment for the purpose of reducing criminal conduct and promoting individualized behavioral change that results in reducing recidivism and promoting the successful reintegration into the community.

3.     Maximizing offender restitution, reconciliation, and restorative services to victims of crime, when applicable.

4.     Holding parolees accountable for successful compliance with applicable court orders and conditions of supervision.

5.     Improving public safety outcomes for persons placed on parole after an offense, as measured by their successful completion of parole and commensurate reduction in the rate of parolees returning to jail or prison as a result of a revocation or conviction of a new crime.

(b)   “Evidence-based practices” refers to supervision policies, procedures, programs, and practices demonstrated by scientific research to reduce recidivism among individuals under probation, parole, or post-release supervision.

(c)    “Recidivism” in the context of this Act will be specifically limited to conviction of a new criminal after having served a period of time on parole.

(d) “Return[ing] to jail” will refer to a 14-day or greater period of time spent detained in a jail. If an individual spends less than 14 days in a jail, that individual’s detention will not apply to calculations outlined within this bill.


3108. (a) All amounts allocated for purposes of implementing this chapter will be provided to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s Division on Rehabilitative Programs to administer for implementation of programs, as specified. These funds may also be used by parole districts for the hiring of additional personnel, as specified.

(b)  In any fiscal year in which a division receives money to be expended for the implementation of this chapter, the moneys, including any interest, shall be made available to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, within 30 days of the deposit of those moneys, for the implementation of program authorized by this chapter.

1.     Judicial Council will provide oversight periodically regarding the monetary allocation to the specific divisions tasked with administering the monies to ensure that disbursed funds are being appropriately used as specified in this section.

2.     Funds allocated pursuant to this act shall be used to provide supervision and rehabilitative services for parolees, and shall be spent on evidence-based practices and programs, as defined in subdivision (c) of Section 3107, which may include, but are not limited to, the following:

A.    Implementing and expanding evidence-based risk and needs assessments for individualized programming

B.    Implementing and expanding intermediate sanctions that include, but are not limited to, mandatory community service, home detention, day reporting, restorative justice programs, work furlough programs, and incarceration in county jail for up to 90 days.

C.     Expanding the availability of evidence-based rehabilitation programs including, but not limited to, drug and alcohol treatment, mental health treatment, anger management, cognitive behavior programs, and job training and employment services.

D.    Hiring additional parole agents, parole service associates, or other personnel to supervise and help oversee and implement evidence-based rehabilitative programming.

E.     Evaluating the effectiveness of rehabilitation and supervision programs and ensuring program fidelity.

3.     The Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation through its Division of Rehabilitative Programs and Division of Adult Parole Operations shall have discretion to spend funds on any of the above practices and programs consistent with this act but, at a minimum, shall devote at least 5 percent of all funding received to evaluate the effectiveness of those programs and practices implemented with the funds provided pursuant to this chapter.

5.     The Division of Rehabilitative Programs and the Division of Adult Parole Operations shall maintain a complete and accurate accounting of any and all funds received pursuant to this chapter.

3109. (a)   The Division of Rehabilitative Programs shall define and track specific outcome based measures. 

(b) The outcome-based measures in subsection (a) shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:

1.     The percentage of persons on parole who are being supervised in accordance with evidence-based practices.

2.     The percentage of state moneys expended for programs that are evidence-based, and a descriptive list of all programs that are evidence-based.

3.     Specification of supervision policies, procedures, programs, and practices that were eliminated.

4.     The percentage of persons on parole who successfully complete the period of parole.

(c) Funds received by the Division of Rehabilitative Programs shall be accounted for in an annual written report to the Administrative Office of the Courts and the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation and will evaluate the effectiveness of the community corrections program.

3110. Commencing no later than 18 months following the initial receipt of funding from the General Fund and pursuant to this Act and annually thereafter, the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation shall submit to the Governor and the Legislature a comprehensive report on the implementation of this act. The report shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following information:

(a)   The effectiveness of parole programs based on the reports of performance-based outcome measures required in Section 3109.

(b)  The percentage of adult parolees whose parole was revoked for the year on which the report is being made.

(c)   The percentage of parolees who were convicted of crimes during their term of parole for the year on which the report is being made.

(d)  The impact of the moneys appropriated pursuant to this act to enhance public safety by reducing the percentage and number of parolees whose parole was revoked for the year being reported on for parole violations or new convictions, and to reduce the number of parolees who return to jail or prison for the year on which the report is being made.

(e)   Any recommendations regarding resource allocations or additional collaboration with other state, regional, federal, or local entities for improvements to this act.

(f)    The number of parolees whose parole was revoked solely for a violation of the terms of parole, and the number of parolees whose parole was revoked because the parolee committed a new crime.

3111. (a) The Division of Rehabilitative Programs shall calculate for each district a baseline parole failure rate that equals the average number of adult parolees returning to state prison during calendar years 2018 to 2020, inclusive, as a percentage of the average adult parolee population during the same period.

(b)  For purposes of calculating the baseline parole failure rate, the number of adult parolees returning to jail or prison shall include those parolees returning to state prison for a revocation of parole, as well as parolees returning to state prison for a conviction of a new offense. The calculation shall also include parolees returning to jail or prison for conviction of a new crime who simultaneously have their parole term terminated.

3112. After the conclusion of each calendar year following the enactment of this section, the Division of Rehabilitative Programs shall calculate for each calendar year the savings from avoided returns-to-prison pursuant to the funding formula. The monetary savings calculated pursuant to the funding formula will be spent to incentivize parole districts to avert parolees from returning to prison or returning to jail. The funding formula will be calculated in the following manner: 

(a) Calculate the baseline annual return-to-jail rate and the baseline return-to-prison rate for each of the 21 parole districts in California. 

1. Baseline rates should include new crimes and technical revocations;

2. Baseline rates should be an average of return-to-jail and return-to-prison rates in the years 2017-2019;

3. Baseline rates will be expressed as a percentage. 

(b) Calculate the number of parolees who would have returned to prison at the baseline return-to-prison rate, and the number of parolees who would have returned to jail at the baseline return-to-jail rate, based on the current parolee population in each district. 

1. Results of these estimates shall be known as the “predicted” returns to prison and “predicted” returns to jail.

(c) Determine the actual total number of parolees returned to prison and the actual total number of parolees returned to jail from each district. 

(1) Calculate the current return-to-prison rate, and the current return-to-jail rate.

(e) Calculate the difference between current returns and predicted returns. 

(1) The difference between current and predicted to returns to prison yields the total number of parolees averted from prison. 

(2) The difference between current and predicted to returns to jail yields the total number of parolees averted from jail.

  1. Multiply the total number of parolees averted from prison across the state by the marginal cost of prison, which is based on the expected annual cost to CDCR of housing a prisoner in a contract facility, to yield the total savings to the state. 
  1. The state of California will retain 25 percent of the savings, and 75 percent will return to the parole districts.
  1. Of the 75 percent of total savings in (f), return half of the calculated savings to the parole districts in proportion to their success at reducing return-to-prison rates and  return the other half to the parole districts in proportion to their success at reducing return-to-jail rates.
  2. Of the 75 percent of total savings in (f), funds returned to parole districts will be divided.
  1. DRP will receive 25 percent of the savings to spend on evidence-based rehabilitation programs;
  2. DAPO receives 50 percent of the savings to spend on evidence based rehabilitation programs;
  3. DAPO receives 25 percent of the savings to spend on new hires.
  1. DAPO may spend less than 25% on new hires.


3113. Annually, the Director of Finance, in consultation with the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, shall calculate a parole failure reduction incentive payment for each district for the most recently completed calendar year, as follows:

(a)   For each district, its parole failure reduction incentive payment shall equal the estimated number of parolees successfully prevented from returning to prison, multiplied by 45 percent of the costs to the state to incarcerate in prison a parolee who was returned to prison.

3114. If data of sufficient quality and of the types required for the implementation of this act are not available then the Division of Rehabilitative Programs shall use the best available data to estimate parole failure reduction rates utilizing a methodology that is as consistent with that described in this act as is reasonably possible.

3115. (a) The Department of Finance shall include an estimate of the total funds to be held and administered in the coming fiscal year as part of the Governor’s proposed budget released no later than January 10 of each year.

(b)   There is hereby established a State Parole Performance Incentives Fund. Moneys budgeted for purposes of providing additional rehabilitative programming authorized in Sections 3110 to 3114, inclusive, shall be deposited into this fund. Any moneys deposited into this fund shall be held and administered by the Division of Rehabilitative Programs and the Division of Adult Parole Operations. The Legislature may allocate up to 3 percent of the funds annually deposited into the State Parole Performance Incentives Fund for use by the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for the costs of administering this program.

3116. The moneys appropriated pursuant to this chapter shall be used to supplement, not supplant, any other state or district appropriation for the supervisory parole agent or the parole department.

SECTION. 3. The Judicial Council shall consider the adoption of appropriate modifications to the Criminal Rules of Court, and of other judicial branch policies, procedures, and programs, affecting parole services that would support implementation of the evidence-based parole supervision practices described in this chapter.

SECTION. 4. If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.

SECTION. 5. Unless this legislative body acts to extend the provisions encompassed by this text, then the provisions will sunset five years after the date the bill becomes effective.


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