Tallahassee, FL – March 29, 2011 --
On Monday afternoon, the Senate Criminal Justice Committee unanimously passed SB 1390. Filed by Senator Paula Dockery (R-Lakeland), this bill is a recommendation from the Tax Watch Government Cost Savings Task Force 2011-2012 Report. Per existing law and rule, individuals eligible for work release are model inmates who have been carefully evaluated before being assigned to a lower custody level. This bill will increase the number of inmates nearing the end of their sentences who are processed through the work release program and allow them to live at DOC approved residences, treatment centers or halfway houses instead of the state-operated center only after they have proven themselves responsible and trustworthy at the center for at least 6 months. “Other states have implemented these reforms, and have shown that recidivism is reduced, while realizing cost savings yet still ensuring public safety,” stated Senator Dockery. “Conservative estimates show the passage of this legislation could result in $5 million in savings per year. Ninety percent of all inmates will be re-entering society, and it is in our best interest to ease them into that transition with the proper tools to make them successful, law-abiding and contributing members of society.”
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