SACRAMENTO -- While Gov. Jerry Brown wrestles with a court order to reduce the state prison population, county sheriffs are quietly seeking more flexibility to reduce the number of felons in their county jails.
A bill requested by Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca was approved this week by the state Senate. It would allow county jail inmates to earn sentence-reducing credits if they complete classes to improve their employability, literacy or social skills.
Assemblywoman Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) said it makes sense to allow credits for non-violent felons sent to jails instead of prisons under a state realignment plan.
“Let’s equip sheriffs with tools to help inmates function better before they’re released back into our communities,” Mitchell said recently. “New skills, better behavior, improved employment prospects will, hopefully, reduce recidivism and make communities safer.”