The state of California recently implemented a prison realignment plan
for the purpose of remediating the problem of overcrowding in state prisons.
Unfortunately, it has had an unforeseen side-effect. Counties across the
state of California are now short on funds for community corrections performance
grants. In previous years, counties were given hundreds of millions in
order to fund these grants whereas this has now been cut by Governor Jerry
Brown to a mere $35 million. What exactly are these grants and why is
it important that their funding has been cut?
These grants are issued by counties to probation departments. The probation
departments in turn use this funding to reduce the number of felons that
get sent back to state prison after
probation violations or for repeating an offense. When the state of California doesn't
have to put someone behind bars, it saves money. With this program, the
saved money would go straight to the counties and their probation departments.
This program was implemented in 2009.
Here's where the unintentional side-effect comes into play. Parole
violators and minor offenders are now the responsibility of their respective
counties. This is the major contributing factor to the fall in California
state prison populations, but an overall rise in county jails. In tangible
terms, this means that 9,500 felons that normally would have gone to state
prison remained in county jail. Nearly 4,000 of these offenders come from
Los Angeles County.
If you were recently arrested for a violation of your probation, how does
this affect you? First of all, it is important to understand the different
types of probation. There is formal probation and informal probation.
Formal probation refers to an offender reporting directly to a probation
officer for scheduled meetings while an informal probation refers that
an offender simply meet certain requirements to complete their term. Your
penalties will not only differ depending on your type of probation and
how you allegedly violated it, but it will depend on which county you
are located in.
After learning more about California's community corrections performance
grants, you may be under the impression that you will automatically remain
in county jail. While this would seem to be the case, it is important
to consult with an attorney about your case. Only your representative
criminal defense lawyer will be able to advise you as to your charges and your future.
To learn more or to secure legal representation for your probation violation, please
contact Martinian & Associates Inc. today!