What They’re Saying About Governor Brown’s Prison Plan


SACRAMENTO – Police chiefs, sheriffs, probation officers, district attorneys, crime victims’ rights advocates, local officials, newspapers and legislators across California support Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.’s to comply with a federal court order to limit state prison population to 137.5 percent of capacity, avoid the early release of thousands of prisoners and help protect public safety. Here’s what they’re saying:

California State Sheriffs’ Association President and Alameda County Sheriff Gregory Ahern: “We Strongly Support The Governor’s Plan” – “On behalf of the California State Sheriffs’ Association (CSSA), we are pleased to support Senate Bill (SB) 105 (Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review), a measure that will prevent the early release of thousands of state prisoners from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR). …We strongly support the Governor’s plan as it is the only solution that can be implemented prior to the end of the legislative session and the court’s December 31st deadline.” (Letter, 8/28/13)

California Police Chiefs Association President and Covina Police Chief Kim Raney: “The Police Chiefs Support The Governor’s Proposal” – “The police chiefs support the Governor’s proposal, SB 105, because it puts California in full compliance with the United States Supreme Court order, does not cede governance over public safety issues to private counsel, and provides sufficient time for a treatment and rehabilitation infrastructure to be securely in place.” (Statement, 8/28/13)

California State Association Of Counties President David Finigan: “We Agree With The Governor That Increasing The Capacity Is The Best Available Short-Term Solution” – “At CSAC our partnership with the state on public safety is strong. We must find both short-term and long-term solutions to this issue. Releasing additional offenders back into our communities in order to satisfy a court order is not the answer. We agree with the Governor that increasing the capacity is the best available short-term solution.” (Statement, 8/27/13)

League Of California Cities: Governor’s Plan “Meets The Court Order’s Prison Population Reduction Requirement Without Threatening Public Safety” – “League Executive Director Chris McKenzie joined a broad coalition of law enforcement, local government and a bipartisan group of legislators at a Capitol news conference on Tuesday where Gov. Jerry Brown presented details of his prison plan, alongside Speaker John Pérez (D-Los Angeles). Not willing to put criminals back on the street, the Governor’s proposal meets the court order’s prison population reduction requirement without threatening public safety.” (Newsletter, 8/30/13)

California District Attorneys Association President and Monterey County District Attorney Dean D. Flippo: Prosecutors “Pleased To Stand With Governor Brown” – “Prosecutors were pleased to stand with Governor Brown today as he unveiled his plan to meet court-ordered state prison population benchmarks. This blueprint complies with federal judicial mandates without releasing inmates early. We look forward to continuing to work with the Governor, the Legislature, and our justice partners to protect the public safety while longer-term strategies are developed.” (Statement, 8/27/13)

Chief Probation Officers Of California President and San Diego County Chief Probation Officer Mack Jenkins: “The Chief Probation Officers Association Is Proud To Support The Governor’s Plan” – “The Chief Probation Officers of California are very proud to stand here in support of the Governor’s plan because what’s been said already we’ll echo. This is about public safety. And the plan that the Governor’s put forward complies with the federal court requirements, but does so in a way that doesn’t unnecessarily put California citizens at risk. … The early release of prisoners is a bad idea. And it’s not something that we need to do, it’s not something that we should do. So the Chief Probation Officers Association is proud to support the Governor’s plan.” (Statement, 8/27/13)

Peace Officers Research Association Of California President Ron Cottingham: “We Applaud The Governor For This Solution” – “I represent the rank-and-file members who these chiefs and sheriffs send out to work every day. I represent the deputy sheriffs, the patrol officers, the probation officers, the district attorney investigators, and corrections throughout this state and our local jails. We have been saying since this state has hit a critical mass that originally the orders were to release the nonviolent, non-serious, non-sexual predators from prison. Those persons are not left anymore. …We applaud the Governor for this solution, for standing up and saying, ‘no more, we’re not releasing anymore prisoners, it’s too dangerous, we don’t have any of those left anymore.’” (Statement, 8/27/13)

Crime Victims United Of California Chair And President Harriet Salarno: “In The Name Of Public Safety, We Are Asking You To Pass Governor Brown’s Proposed Short Term Solution” – “On behalf of Crime Victims United of California (CVUC), I am pleased to support SB 105 related to corrections. … CVUC is proud to have worked with Governor Brown to help craft this immediate, short-term solution to preserve public safety. This bill provides for immediate solutions that will allow for the meeting of the court mandate while preventing the early release of serious and violent offenders. It is imperative that this short term solution be implemented in order to avoid more serious and violent crimes and more victims. … On behalf of all crime victims and in the name of public safety, we are asking you to pass Governor Brown’s proposed short term solution.” (Letter, 8/28/13)

Crime Victims Action Alliance: “Crime Victims Action Alliance Supports The Governor’s Bi-Partisan Backed Plan” – “Crime Victims Action Alliance supports the Governor’s bi-partisan backed plan to utilize additional beds to prevent the need for further inmate releases.” (Information Alert, 8/28/13)

L.A. Daily News & Fresno Bee: The Governor’s Plan Is The “Best Way To Deal With California’s Long-Standing Prison Crisis And Safeguard Citizens” – “While Brown’s proposal is expensive, we believe it’s the best way to deal with California’s long-standing prison crisis and safeguard citizens. As the governor said on Tuesday at a news conference where he unveiled the plan: After releasing 46,000 inmates to comply with federal court orders, only the most dangerous convicts remain in state prison.” (Editorial, L.A. Daily News & Fresno Bee, “Brown plan is right bandage,” 8/31/13)

The Desert Sun: “We Agree With The Governor’s Assessment That Dangerous Criminals Must Remain In State Prison” – “The Desert Sun has long supported Gov. Jerry Brown’s steadfast refusal to release more prisoners in defiance of federal court orders. This week, he found a way to compromise without creating a greater risk to public safety. … We agree with the governor’s assessment that dangerous criminals must remain in state prison.” (Editorial, Desert Sun, “Releasing dangerous convicts in California is no option,” 8/28/13)

U-T San Diego: “We Need Decisive Action” – “A recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling made clear that California must remove nearly 10,000 inmates from its overcrowded prisons by year’s end to honor a 2009 high court mandate that the state system can hold no more than 137.5 percent of its normal capacity. This prompted Gov. Jerry Brown to offer a plan to spend $315 million on additional prison beds this fiscal year and even more in coming years. It quickly won the support of legislative leaders in both parties, with one exception: Senate President Darrell Steinberg. … But on this issue, we need decisive action, not just debate. Otherwise, come New Year’s Day, there will be 10,000 more felons walking our streets. Here’s hoping state leaders understand that can’t be allowed to happen.” (Editorial, U-T San Diego, “State has little time to spare in prison fix,” 8/29/13)

Small Business Action Committee President And Fox & Hounds Editor Joel Fox: The Situation “Demands The Kind Of Immediate Fix The Governor Is Proposing” – “The prisoner problem has festered but it demands the kind of immediate fix the governor is proposing to protect the public’s safety. Then the legislature can get down to business and find out how tax dollars have been spent – and should be spent – to make changes for the long term.” (Fox & Hounds, “Steinberg Objection Shows Gov’s Prison Plan Needed Now,” 8/28/13)

Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez: “The Governor’s Plan Is The Right Plan” – “The Governor’s plan is the right plan given our circumstances. It keeps inmates behind bars and develops long-term cost-effective solutions that protect public safety. The Governor’s plan achieves what the Senate says they want—without kicking the can down the road to achieve it. Some of the elements of Senator Steinberg’s proposal are already included in our bipartisan plan, but I am deeply skeptical about Senator Steinberg’s approach that gives prisoner plaintiffs who favor mass release of prisoners the power to set our prison population and effectively takes the people’s elected representatives out of the equation. Safe communities shouldn’t be the hope for Californians—they should be the reality, and our bipartisan plan, supported by law enforcement, keeps communities safe.” (Statement, 8/28/13)

Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff: Governor’s Plan Makes “Safety Of California Families And Communities Our First Priority” – “We are glad to see the Governor join Senate Republicans in making the safety of California families and communities our first priority. … I am pleased the Governor is now using the ideas that Republicans sent him earlier this year to ensure that additional dangerous felons are not released into our communities.” (Statement, 8/27/13)

Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway: The Governor’s Plan “Helps Address The Prison Crisis” – “While today’s announcement helps address the prison crisis in the short term, there’s still more work to be done to address the challenges in the criminal justice system. We will continue to work with the Governor and the Speaker to find sustainable solutions that will honor the court’s demands, while keeping Californians safe.” (Statement, 8/27/13)