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A09506 Summary:

SPONSORBichotte Hermelyn
Add Art 35 §847, Exec L
Enacts the "Michael K. Williams law" to establish a grant program to incentivize counties and municipalities to reduce prison populations; makes an appropriation therefor.
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A09506 Actions:

03/10/2022referred to codes
03/28/2022amend (t) and recommit to codes
03/28/2022print number 9506a
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A09506 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
SPONSOR: Bichotte Hermelyn
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the executive law, in relation to enacting the "Michael K. Williams law" to establish a grant program to incentivize counties and municipalities to reduce prison populations; and making an appropri- ation therefor   PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: Section 1: Establishes that the act shall be known as the "Michael K. Williams Law". Section 2: Amends the executive law to provide grants administered by the commissioner of the division of criminal justice under the attorney general, to county governments. These grants may be awarded to counties upon submission of an application denoting the ability to collect and analyze local criminal justice and incarceration data regarding racial and ethnic disparities and; provide for ways to decrease local jail and prison populations within the county while monitoring racial and ethnic disparities among the incarcerated populations and; establishes a path- way to terminate contracts with counties where crime rates rise at a rate of more than three(3) percent. Section 3: Appropriates a total allocation through the program of seven million dollars ($7,000,000). Section 4: Appropriates a sum of up to and including, three hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($350,000) per grant. Section 5: States that each county may submit no more than one applica- tion annually. Section 6: States that the act shall take effect immediately.   JUSTIFICATION: Michael K. Williams was an American actor, producer, and racial justice advocate who grew up in East Flatbush, going on to be successful in the film industry and lending his voice, as an Ambassador to the Innocence Project and ACLU. "Our criminal justice system has swallowed up too many people I love," Williams famously said. Over-sentencing in predominately Black and brown communities across the state has led to a dramatic inequality in the incarcerated population. Attempts to lower prison populations through sentence reduction and waivers have been carried out in such a way that minority groups contin- ue to be disproportionately represented in these systems, making up fifty-two (52) percent of the prison population as recently as 2020  1. In New York City, Black and Latinx people make up just 52 percent of the population, but comprise 90 percent of jail admissions2. These dispari- ties not only affect those within the prison community, but also those who were formerly imprisoned, with studies showing that of the $1.9 billion lost in earnings recorded in 2021, eighty (80) percent of those loses were borne by the Black and Latino communities. Studies done by the Brennan Center for Justice and the Center for Ameri- can Progress have also shown positive projections for governments that institute policies incentivizing reductions in mass incarceration with direct focuses on equality through specifically targeted grant quali- fications and crime reduction safeguards0). Criminal justice practices that have been successful in reducing crime both pre, and post, incarceration include: community policing through collaboration with local business and citizens; increased recreational opportunities for youth, increasing the availability and use of alterna- tive-to-incarceration programs such as restorative justice programs and substance abuse treatment; and employing community corrections approaches such as risk/needs assessments, intensive wraparound services, and comprehensive case managementluBy utilizing local and community based approaches, and encouraging data collection and analyza- tion, including data on racial and ethnic disparities, this bill serves to both reduce the prison population and keep our communities safe.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately. 1 "2020 Adjusted Population for Incarcerated Individuals ." New York State Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment, https://www.latfor.state.ny.usidatai?sec.2020amendpop. 2 https://thecrimereport.org/2021/04/20/glaring-radal-dIsparities-persist- in-nyciails-study/ 3 Grawert, Ames, et al. "Poverty and Mass Incarcera- tion in New York: An Agenda for Change." Brennan Center forJustice, 1 Mar. 2022, https://www.brennancenter.org,/ourwork/policy-solutIons/poverty-and-mass -incarceratIon-newlork-agenda-change. 4 Stemen, Don..-For the Record the Prison Paradox: More Incarceration Will Not Make Us Safer." Vera Institute of Justice, July 2017, https://www.vera.org/downIoads/publIcations/for-the-record-prison-parado x_02.pdf.
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A09506 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                     March 10, 2022
        Introduced  by  M.  of A. BICHOTTE HERMELYN -- read once and referred to
          the Committee on Codes -- committee discharged, bill amended,  ordered
          reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee
        AN  ACT to amend the executive law, in relation to enacting the "Michael
          K.  Williams law" to establish a grant program to incentivize counties
          and municipalities to reduce prison populations; and making an  appro-
          priation therefor
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "Michael K.
     2  Williams law".
     3    § 2. Article 35 of the executive  law  is  amended  by  adding  a  new
     4  section 847 to read as follows:
     5    §  847.  Michael K. Williams grant program. 1. There is hereby created
     6  within the division of criminal justice services a  decarceration  grant
     7  program  to  be  administered by the attorney general acting through the
     8  commissioner to award grants to county governments for  the  implementa-
     9  tion  of  evidence-based  programs  designed  to  reduce crime rates and
    10  incarcerations.
    11    2. A grant may be awarded upon the submission of an application to the
    12  attorney general which:
    13    (a) demonstrates the ability to collect  and  analyze  local  criminal
    14  justice  and  incarceration  data  including  data  on racial and ethnic
    15  disparities;
    16    (b) establishes benchmarks to track decarceration, a clear methodology
    17  to account for the number of people in custody and growth rate over  the
    18  past three calendar years;
    19    (c)  provides  a  means  to develop a strategic, collaborative plan to
    20  decrease local jail/prison populations which shall be public facing  and
    21  outline  how  funds, if awarded, shall be used to reduce the prison/jail
    22  population in the county over time;
    23    (d) sets goals for the reduction of racial and ethnic jail  incarcera-
    24  tion disparities;
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 9506--A                          2
     1    (e)  demonstrates  that the crime rate within the municipality did not
     2  increase by more than three percent.
     3    3.  If a grant is awarded upon the submission of an application, funds
     4  cannot be used to construct new jails or correctional centers.
     5    4. Financial savings created through decreased incarceration shall  be
     6  used  to sustain programmatic and community-based efforts to reduce jail
     7  incarceration.
     8    5. Grantees  shall  consult  with  municipal,  county  and  state  law
     9  enforcement  agencies, courts, public defense practitioners and communi-
    10  ty-based organizations to plan, implement and evaluate.
    11    6. If a grantee fails to meet the incarceration rate  and  racial  and
    12  ethnic  disparities reduction requirements under subdivision two of this
    13  section in any two consecutive years of the award, the attorney general,
    14  acting through the commissioner, shall terminate the award.
    15    § 3. The sum of seven million dollars ($7,000,000), or so much thereof
    16  as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated to the Michael  K.  Williams
    17  grant  program  as  established pursuant to section 847 of the executive
    18  law from any moneys in the state treasury not otherwise appropriated and
    19  made immediately available to the division of criminal justice  services
    20  for  distribution to municipalities for the purposes of carrying out the
    21  provisions of this act. Such moneys shall be payable on  the  audit  and
    22  warrant  of  the  comptroller  on  vouchers certified or approved by the
    23  commissioner of criminal justice services in the  manner  prescribed  by
    24  law.
    25    §  4.  Any financial assistance in the form of a grant may be provided
    26  for any amount from funds appropriated specifically therefor up  to  and
    27  including the amount of three hundred fifty thousand dollars.
    28    § 5. Each county may submit no more than one application annually.
    29    § 6. This act shall take effect immediately.
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