California Counties Should Build Upon Distribution of Proposition 47 Statewide Savings with Reinvestment of Local Savings

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 8, 2017
Contact: Zaineb Mohammed, Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, Zaineb@ellabakercenter.org, 630-921-1741

California Counties Should Build Upon Distribution of Proposition 47 Statewide Savings with Reinvestment of Local Savings

Ella Baker Center Statement on Prop 47 Grants

Today, the Board of State and Community Corrections announced which counties across the state of California will receive the $103 million from the Proposition 47 statewide savings fund, to be distributed over 3 years.  Alameda County’s Health Services Agency will receive $6 million to fund the creation of a re-entry program to provide services to people who have mental health and substance use issues.

The distribution of Prop 47 grants to counties across the state is a positive first step towards realizing the benefits of this proposition, which reduced certain non-violent, non-serious drug and property wobblers from felonies to misdemeanors, leading to 18,000 fewer people in jails and prisons in California.

For Californians to fully benefit from the implementation of Prop 47, counties across the state should build upon the distribution of statewide savings by calculating the local savings generated by reduced local jail populations.

In Alameda County, the Legislative Analyst’s Office estimates that Prop 47 locally reduced the county jail population by 13%, reduced the caseloads of county departments that deal with criminal justice issues, and potentially created $1.7 million in annual savings.

The Alameda County Board of Supervisors and the Oakland City Council recently declared June to be “Second Chances Month” for people impacted by the criminal justice system. By calculating the local savings from Prop 47 and reinvesting those savings in re-entry support, community resources, and prevention, Alameda County officials can continue to be statewide leaders in enacting smart and effective criminal justice reforms that prioritize long-term safety and opportunity for our communities.