AB965: Apply earned credits IMMEDIATELY!

AB965: Apply earned credits IMMEDIATELY!

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Michele Saldana started this petition to CDCR Kathleen Allison and

AB 965: Apply earned credits IMMEDIATELY!!

 (Mark Stone) (An act to amend Section 3051 of the Penal Code, relating to parole). (Approved by Governor October 08, 2019. Filed with Secretary of State October 08, 2019). 

This bill was passed by the CA Legislature in 2019 and became effective January 1, 2020 and we are still awaiting the Regulation Process. CDCR has the discretion to decide when the Regulations Process opens. CDCR states they have until January 1 2022 to start applying these credits. CDCR has NOT implemented these credits. Many of the incarcerated could have gone to board, and possibly been released by now.  We need to resurface AB965, so CDCR can start applying these credits to youth offenders, which would advance their YOPD sooner. This can possibly help reduce the inmate population. Many of these youth offenders have already been incarcerated for over 10,15, and 20 years, they have their credits earned and need to be applied!

AB965 expands opportunities for incarcerated people to reduce their sentence and advance their youth offender eligible parole date by earning credits for good behavior, participation in self-help groups, and completion of educational and rehabilitative programs. Under California’s Penal Code, incarcerated people are eligible for an early parole hearing date if they were under the age of 26 at the time of their controlling offense.

Existing law requires the Board of Parole Hearings to conduct a youth offender parole hearing for offenders sentenced to state prison who committed specified crimes when they were under 25 years of age. Existing law makes a person who was convicted of a controlling offense that was committed when the person was 25 years of age or younger and for which the sentence is a determinate sentence eligible for release on parole at a youth offender hearing by the board during the person’s 15th year of incarceration. Existing law makes a person who was convicted of a controlling offense that was committed when the person was 25 years of age or younger and for which the sentence is a life term of less than 25 years to life eligible for release on parole at a youth offender hearing by the board during the person’s 20th year of incarceration. Existing law makes a person who was convicted of a controlling offense that was committed when the person was 25 years of age or younger and for which the sentence is a life term of 25 years to life eligible for release on parole at a youth offender hearing by the board during the person’s 25th year of incarceration.

This bill would require a person’s youth offender parole hearing to occur within 6 months of the first year they become eligible for a youth offender parole hearing under those provisions. The bill would also authorize the Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to authorize those persons to obtain an earlier youth offender parole hearing by adopting regulations pursuant to specified provisions of the California Constitution.

The Legislature recognizes that it is within the full discretion of the Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to determine what, if any, credit earning programs shall apply to an incarcerated person, including any and all credits to advance a youth parole eligible date.

The board shall complete all youth offender parole hearings for individuals who were sentenced to indeterminate life terms and who become entitled to have their parole suitability considered at a youth offender parole hearing on January 1, 2018, by January 1, 2020.

The board shall complete all youth offender parole hearings for individuals who were sentenced to determinate terms and who become entitled to have their parole suitability considered at a youth offender parole hearing on January 1, 2018, by January 1, 2022. The board shall, for all individuals described in this subparagraph, conduct the consultation described in subdivision (a) of Section 3041 before January 1, 2019.

 The board shall complete, by July 1, 2020, all youth offender parole hearings for individuals who were sentenced to terms of life without the possibility of parole and who are or will be entitled to have their parole suitability considered at a youth offender parole hearing before July 1, 2020

Resources: https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201920200AB965; https://www.initiatejustice.org/project/ab965

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At 500 signatures, this petition is more likely to be featured in recommendations!