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California Inmate Rehabilitation Initiative (2008)

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The Inmate Rehabilitation Initiative (07-0070) was proposed as an initiated state statute in California. It was circulating in preparation for the November 2008 ballot; its supporters will need to turn in 433,971 valid signatures for that to happen but they did not reach that goal.

What the initiative would have done:

  • Eliminates certain restrictions on prisoners’ participation in educational and substance dependency classes and family visitation programs.
  • Prohibits exclusion based on sentence, custody designation, prior crimes or disciplinary offenses and commitment offenses.
  • Provides that inmates condemned to die are not eligible for family visitation program.
  • Allows family visitation privileges only to inmates who: (1) are not residing in reception centers or administrative segregation/security housing units; (2) are competent to and have obtained a high school diploma or equivalent; (3) agree to random drug testing; (4) pay $25 toward cost of a visit.

Fiscal estimate

Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government: Annual state prison operating costs that would range between several tens of millions and a few hundreds of millions of dollars annually, primarily to expand inmate educational and substance abuse programs. These costs could be more than offset by state savings due to reductions in the prison population resulting from expanding these programs. One-time capital outlay costs of between several tens of millions and several hundreds of millions of dollars to construct and renovate prison visiting, education, and substance abuse treatment facilities.


The proponents of the measure were Catherine Langston and Danielle Swaze.

See also

External links