Florida Senate - 2013 SB 1704 By Senator Thompson 12-01159-13 20131704__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to inmate reentry; providing 3 definitions; directing the Department of Corrections 4 to develop and administer a reentry program for 5 nonviolent offenders which is intended to divert 6 nonviolent offenders from long periods of 7 incarceration; requiring that the program include 8 intensive substance abuse treatment and rehabilitative 9 programming; providing for the minimum length of 10 service in the program; providing that any portion of 11 a sentence before placement in the program does not 12 count as progress toward program completion; 13 specifying eligibility criteria for a nonviolent 14 offender to be placed into the reentry program; 15 directing the court to screen and select eligible 16 offenders for the program based on specified 17 considerations; directing the department to notify the 18 nonviolent offender’s sentencing court to obtain 19 approval before the nonviolent offender is placed into 20 the reentry program; requiring the department to 21 notify the state attorney; authorizing the state 22 attorney to file objections to placing the offender 23 into the reentry program within a specified period; 24 requiring the sentencing court to notify the 25 department of the court’s decision to approve or 26 disapprove the requested placement within a specified 27 period; requiring the nonviolent offender to undergo 28 an education assessment and a full substance abuse 29 assessment if admitted into the reentry program; 30 requiring the offender to be enrolled in an adult 31 education program in specified circumstances; 32 requiring that assessments of vocational skills and 33 future career education be provided to the offender; 34 requiring that certain reevaluation be made 35 periodically; providing that the nonviolent offender 36 is subject to the disciplinary rules of the 37 department; specifying the reasons for which the 38 offender may be terminated from the reentry program; 39 requiring that the department submit a report to the 40 sentencing court at least 30 days before the 41 nonviolent offender is scheduled to complete the 42 reentry program; setting forth the issues to be 43 addressed in the report; providing a court may 44 schedule a hearing to consider any modifications to an 45 imposed sentence; requiring the sentencing court to 46 issue an order modifying the sentence imposed and 47 placing the nonviolent offender on drug offender 48 probation if the nonviolent offender’s performance is 49 satisfactory; authorizing the court to revoke 50 probation and impose the original sentence in 51 specified circumstances; authorizing the court to 52 require the offender to complete a postadjudicatory 53 drug court program in specified circumstances; 54 directing the department to implement the reentry 55 program using available resources; requiring the 56 department to submit an annual report to the Governor 57 and Legislature detailing the extent of implementation 58 of the reentry program, specifying information to be 59 provided and outlining future goals and 60 recommendations; authorizing the department to enter 61 into contracts with qualified individuals, agencies, 62 or corporations for services for the reentry program; 63 authorizing the department to impose administrative or 64 protective confinement as necessary; providing that 65 the section does not create a right to placement in 66 the reentry program or any right to placement or early 67 release under supervision of any type; providing that 68 the section does not create a cause of action related 69 to the program; providing that specified provisions 70 are not severable; authorizing the department to 71 establish a system of incentives within the reentry 72 program which the department may use to promote 73 participation in rehabilitative programs and the 74 orderly operation of institutions and facilities; 75 directing the department to develop a system for 76 tracking recidivism, including, but not limited to, 77 rearrests and recommitment of nonviolent offenders who 78 successfully complete the reentry program, and to 79 report on recidivism in its annual report of the 80 program; directing the department to adopt rules; 81 providing an effective date. 82 83 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 84 85 Section 1. Nonviolent offender reentry program.— 86 (1) As used in this section, the term: 87 (a) “Department” means the Department of Corrections. 88 (b) “Nonviolent offender” means an offender: 89 1. Whose primary offense is a felony of the third degree; 90 2. Who has never been convicted of a forcible felony as 91 defined in s. 776.08, Florida Statutes; 92 3. Who has never been convicted of an offense listed in s. 93 775.082(9)(a)1.r., Florida Statutes, without regard to prior 94 incarceration or release; 95 4. Who has never been convicted of an offense described in 96 chapter 847, Florida Statutes, involving a minor or a depiction 97 of a minor; 98 5. Who has never been convicted of an offense described in 99 chapter 827, Florida Statutes; 100 6. Who has never been convicted of any offense described in 101 s. 784.07, s. 784.074, s. 784.075, s. 784.076, s. 784.08, s. 102 784.083, or s. 784.085, Florida Statutes; 103 7. Who has never been convicted of any offense involving 104 the possession or use of a firearm; 105 8. Who has never been convicted of a capital felony or a 106 felony of the first or second degree; 107 9. Who has never been convicted of any offense that 108 requires a person to register as a sexual offender pursuant to 109 s. 943.0435, Florida Statutes; and 110 10. Who is not the subject of a domestic violence 111 injunction currently in force. 112 (2)(a) The department shall develop and administer a 113 reentry program for nonviolent offenders. The reentry program 114 must include prison-based substance abuse treatment, general 115 education development and adult basic education courses, 116 vocational training, training in decisionmaking and personal 117 development, and other rehabilitation programs. 118 (b) The reentry program is intended to divert nonviolent 119 offenders from long periods of incarceration when a reduced 120 period of incarceration supplemented by participation in 121 intensive substance abuse treatment and rehabilitative 122 programming could produce the same deterrent effect, protect the 123 public, rehabilitate the offender, and reduce recidivism. 124 (c) The nonviolent offender shall serve at least 6 months 125 in the reentry program. The offender may not count any portion 126 of his or her sentence served before placement in the reentry 127 program as progress toward program completion. 128 (d) A reentry program may be operated in a secure area in 129 or adjacent to an adult institution. 130 (3) The department shall screen offenders committed to the 131 department for eligibility criteria to participate in the 132 reentry program. In order to be eligible, an offender must be a 133 nonviolent offender, must have served at least one-half of his 134 or her original sentence, and must have been identified as 135 having a need for substance abuse treatment. 136 (4) The department shall select eligible offenders for the 137 reentry program. When selecting participants for the reentry 138 program, the department shall be guided in its selection by its 139 evaluation of the following considerations: 140 (a) The offender’s history of disciplinary reports. 141 (b) The offender’s criminal history, with particular 142 scrutiny of any charges for offenses listed in paragraph (1)(b). 143 (c) The severity of the offender’s addiction. 144 (d) The offender’s history of criminal behavior related to 145 substance abuse. 146 (e) Whether the offender has participated or requested to 147 participate in a general education development or other 148 educational, technical, work, vocational, or self-rehabilitation 149 program. 150 (f) The results of any risk assessment of the offender. 151 (g) The outcome of all past participation of the offender 152 in substance abuse treatment programs. 153 (h) The possible rehabilitative benefits that substance 154 abuse treatment, educational programming, vocational training, 155 and other rehabilitative programming might have on the offender. 156 (i) The likelihood that participation in the program will 157 produce the same deterrent effect, protect the public, save 158 government funds, and prevent or delay recidivism to an equal or 159 greater extent than completion of the sentence previously 160 imposed. 161 (5)(a) If an offender volunteers to participate in the 162 reentry program, meets the eligibility criteria, is selected by 163 the department based on the considerations in subsection (4), 164 and space is available in the reentry program, the department 165 may request the sentencing court to approve the offender’s 166 participation in the reentry program. The request shall be made 167 in writing and shall include a brief summation of the 168 department’s evaluation under subsection (4) and a recital of 169 the documents or other information upon which the evaluation is 170 based. All documents may be delivered to the sentencing court 171 electronically. 172 (b)1. The department shall notify the state attorney that 173 the offender is being considered for placement in the reentry 174 program. The notice must include a copy of all documents 175 provided with the request to the court. The notice and all 176 documents may be delivered to the state attorney electronically 177 and may take the form of a copy of an electronic delivery to the 178 sentencing court. 179 2. The notice must also state that the state attorney may 180 notify the sentencing court in writing of any objection the 181 state attorney might have if the nonviolent offender is placed 182 in the reentry program. The state attorney must notify the 183 sentencing court of his or her objections within 15 days after 184 receiving the notice. Whether or not an objection is raised, the 185 state attorney may provide to the sentencing court any 186 information supplemental or contrary to the information provided 187 by the department that may assist the court in its 188 determination. 189 (c) When approving a nonviolent offender for participation 190 in the reentry program, the sentencing court may consider any 191 facts the court considers relevant, including, but not limited 192 to, the criteria listed in subsection (4); the original 193 sentencing report and any evidence admitted in a previous 194 sentencing proceeding; the offender’s record of arrests without 195 conviction for crimes; any other evidence of allegations of 196 unlawful conduct or the use of violence by the offender; the 197 offender’s family ties, length of residence in the community, 198 employment history, and mental condition; the likelihood that 199 participation in the program will produce the same deterrent 200 effect, rehabilitate the offender, and prevent or delay 201 recidivism to an equal or greater extent than completion of the 202 sentence previously imposed; and the likelihood that the 203 offender will engage again in a criminal course of conduct. 204 (d) The sentencing court shall notify the department in 205 writing of the court’s decision to approve or disapprove the 206 requested placement of the nonviolent offender within 30 days 207 after the court receives the department’s request to place the 208 offender in the reentry program. If the court approves, the 209 notification shall list the factors upon which the court relied 210 in approving the placement. 211 (6) After the nonviolent offender is admitted into the 212 reentry program, he or she shall undergo a full substance abuse 213 assessment to determine his or her substance abuse treatment 214 needs. The offender shall also have an educational assessment, 215 which shall be accomplished using the Test of Adult Basic 216 Education or any other testing instrument approved by the 217 Department of Education. Each offender who has not obtained a 218 high school diploma shall be enrolled in an adult education 219 program designed to aid the offender in improving his or her 220 academic skills and earn a high school diploma. Further 221 assessments of the offender’s vocational skills and future 222 career education shall be provided to the offender as needed. A 223 periodic reevaluation shall be made in order to assess the 224 progress of each offender. 225 (7)(a) If a nonviolent offender in the reentry program 226 becomes unmanageable, the department may revoke the offender’s 227 gain-time and place the offender in disciplinary confinement in 228 accordance with department rule. Except as provided in paragraph 229 (b), the offender shall be readmitted to the reentry program 230 after completing the ordered discipline. Any period during which 231 the offender is unable to participate in the reentry program 232 shall be excluded from the specified time requirements in the 233 reentry program. 234 (b) The department may terminate an offender from the 235 reentry program if: 236 1. The offender commits or threatens to commit a violent 237 act; 238 2. The department determines that the offender is unable to 239 participate in the reentry program due to the offender’s medical 240 condition; 241 3. The offender’s sentence is modified or expires; 242 4. The department reassigns the offender’s classification 243 status; or 244 5. The department determines that removing the offender 245 from the reentry program is in the best interest of the offender 246 or the security of the institution. 247 (8)(a) The department shall submit a report to the 248 sentencing court at least 30 days before the nonviolent offender 249 is scheduled to complete the reentry program. The report must 250 describe the offender’s performance in the reentry program and 251 certify whether the performance is satisfactory. The court may 252 schedule a hearing to consider any modification to the imposed 253 sentence. Notwithstanding the eligibility criteria contained in 254 s. 948.20, Florida Statutes, if the offender’s performance is 255 satisfactory to the department and the court, the court shall 256 issue an order modifying the sentence imposed and placing the 257 offender on drug offender probation as described in s. 258 948.20(2), Florida Statutes, subject to the department’s 259 certification of the offender’s successful completion of the 260 remainder of the reentry program. The term of drug offender 261 probation must not be less than the remainder of time that the 262 offender would have served in prison, but for participating in 263 the program. A condition of drug offender probation may include 264 electronic monitoring or placement in a community residential or 265 nonresidential licensed substance abuse treatment facility under 266 the jurisdiction of the department or the Department of Children 267 and Families or any public or private entity providing such 268 services. The order shall include findings that the offender’s 269 performance is satisfactory, that the requirements for 270 resentencing under this section are satisfied, and that the 271 public safety will not be compromised. If the nonviolent 272 offender violates the conditions of drug offender probation, the 273 court may revoke probation and impose any sentence that it might 274 have originally imposed. An offender may not be released from 275 the custody of the department under this section except pursuant 276 to a judicial order modifying his or her sentence. 277 (b) If an offender being released pursuant to paragraph (a) 278 intends to reside in a county that has established a 279 postadjudicatory drug court program as described in s. 397.334, 280 Florida Statutes, the sentencing court may require the offender 281 to successfully complete the postadjudicatory drug court program 282 as a condition of drug offender probation. The original 283 sentencing court shall relinquish jurisdiction of the offender’s 284 case to the postadjudicatory drug court program until the 285 offender is no longer active in the program, the case is 286 returned to the sentencing court due to the offender’s 287 termination from the program for failure to comply with the 288 terms thereof, or the offender’s sentence is completed. If 289 transferred to a postadjudicatory drug court program, the 290 offender shall comply with all conditions and orders of the 291 program. 292 (9) The department shall implement the reentry program to 293 the fullest extent feasible within available resources. 294 (10) The department shall submit an annual report to the 295 Governor, the President of the Senate, and the Speaker of the 296 House of Representatives detailing the extent of implementation 297 of the reentry program, the number of participants selected, 298 approved, and who have successfully completed the program, a 299 reasonable estimate or description of the additional public 300 costs incurred and any public funds saved with respect to each 301 participant, a brief description of each sentence modification, 302 and a brief description of the subsequent criminal history, if 303 any, of each participant following any modification of sentence 304 under this section. The report shall also outline future goals 305 and any recommendation the department has for future legislative 306 action. 307 (11) The department may enter into performance-based 308 contracts with qualified individuals, agencies, or corporations 309 for the provision of any or all of the services for the reentry 310 program provided that an offender may not be released from the 311 custody of the department under this section except pursuant to 312 a judicial order modifying a sentence. 313 (12) A nonviolent offender in the reentry program is 314 subject to rules of conduct established by the department and 315 may have sanctions imposed, including loss of privileges, 316 restrictions, disciplinary confinement, alteration of release 317 plans, or other program modifications in keeping with the nature 318 and gravity of the program violation. Administrative or 319 protective confinement, as necessary, may be imposed. 320 (13) This section does not create or confer any right to 321 any inmate to placement in the reentry program or any right to 322 placement or early release under supervision of any type. An 323 inmate does not have a cause of action under this section 324 against the department, a court, or the state attorney related 325 to the reentry program. This subsection is not severable from 326 the remaining provisions of this section. If this subsection is 327 determined by any state or federal court to be not fully 328 enforceable, this section shall stand repealed in its entirety. 329 (14) The department may establish a system of incentives 330 within the reentry program which the department may use to 331 promote participation in rehabilitative programs and the orderly 332 operation of institutions and facilities. 333 (15) The department shall develop a system for tracking 334 recidivism, including, but not limited to, rearrests and 335 recommitment of nonviolent offenders who successfully complete 336 the reentry program, and shall report the recidivism rate in its 337 annual report of the program. 338 (16) The department shall adopt rules pursuant to ss. 339 120.536(1) and 120.54, Florida Statutes, as are necessary to 340 administer the reentry program. 341 Section 2. This act shall take effect October 1, 2013.