Nevada County AB109 boasts excellent recidivism rate
In 2011 the California State Legislature passed AB109 which changed sentencing rules for convicted felons sentenced to state prisons. Under AB109, criminals convicted of nonviolent crimes, nonsexual and, or, non-serious crimes were to be sent to local jails instead of state prison. Upon release from custody, AB109 criminals would be supervised by county probation rather than state parole.
Passage of AB109 was intended to accomplish two major objectives. The first objective was to decrease state prison overcrowding. The second objective was to improve recidivism, which is defined as a conviction of a new felony or misdemeanor committed within three years from release from custody or committed within three years of placement on supervision. At the time AB109 was enacted, recidivism rates of state prisoners had reached a high of 70 percent; for every 100 prisoners released from custody, 70 were convicted of new crime(s) within three years.
AB109 sought to improve the state’s dismal recidivism rates by shifting incarceration, rehabilitation and supervision responsibilities to local community agencies. In Nevada County, the Probation Department, Sheriff, Superior Court, Behavioral Health, Health and Human Services, local law enforcement and numerous community partners are members of the Community Corrections Partnership, which oversees local efforts to reduce recidivism.
On Oct. 28, Chief Probation Officer Michael Ertola presented the county Community Corrections Partnership 2014-2015 plan to the Board of Supervisors, as well as an overview of recidivism results since AB109 was enacted in 2011. Prior to AB109, State Parole recidivism was 70 percent in California and 50 percent in Nevada County. Post AB109, and as of March 2014, the recidivism rate fell to 44 percent for all California counties.
These numbers pale in comparison to Nevada County’s post AB109 recidivism rate: only 11 percent as of August 2014. This translates to only 13 AB109 offenders having been convicted of a new criminal offense since October 2011.
Ertola states the county’s success “can be directly tied to the incredible collaboration among all members of the Community Corrections Partnership Committee (CCP).” Ertola went on to state, “the CCP’s commitment to evidenced based practices of accountability combined with intensive supervision combined with appropriate treatment services to address the risk/needs of each individual is proving to drastically reduce recidivism in Nevada County.”
Nevada County Behavioral Health Assisted Outpatient Treatment (Laura’s Law)
Nevada County continues to be a leader in the state and offers consultation and support to many counties throughout California who are implementing or evaluating whether to implement Assisted Outpatient Treatment.
This week, Nevada County Behavioral Health Director (Interim) Becky Slade, Health and Human Services Agency Director (Interim) Michael Heggarty, Superior Court Judge Tom Anderson, Deputy County Counsel Scott McLeran, and Public Defender Keri Klein hosted a delegation visiting from Sacramento County to present Nevada County’s innovative Assisted Outpatient Treatment (Laura’s Law) program. Sacramento District 1 Supervisor Phil Serna and District 5 Supervisor Don Nottoli participated in a two-hour overview of the program, and then sat in and observed a live status review hearing at Nevada County Superior Court.
Haffey appointed president of State Association
Rick Haffey, County Executive Officer, has been appointed President of the County Administrative Officers Association of California, a network of Chief Administrative Officers of the counties in California dedicated to assisting its members to improve services to their constituencies. The association has provided opportunities for Nevada County to work with other counties to enhance government through advocacy, shared services and education. Haffey will serve a one-year term as president and looks forward to facilitating enhanced communication and cooperation among county government officials in California.
November classes in the Collaborative Technology Center
The Collaborative Technology Center at the Madelyn Helling Library is offering 15 free technology classes in the month of November. Some of the classes being offered this month are an Introduction to the Internet, iPad Apps: the Next Steps, Beginning Mac, and Film Editing. For a full listing of classes, visit http://madelynhelling.evanced.info/signup/eventcalendar.aspx or pick up a brochure at your local branch of the Nevada County Libraries. You can sign up for a class online, over the phone, or in person. For further information, call Vaile Fujikawa at 470-2748.
Watch “Divergent” at the Madelyn Helling Library
The library will be showing the movie “Divergent” in the Gene Albaugh Community Room at the Madelyn Helling Library at 2 p.m. Tuesday. Free admission and free popcorn.
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