A04158 Summary:

COSPNSRJaffee, Cahill, Cook, Ortiz, Titone, Perry, Hooper, Titus, Colton, Weprin, Blake
MLTSPNSRGlick, Gottfried
Establishes the commission on post-secondary correctional education to examine, evaluate, and make recommendations concerning the availability, effectiveness and need for expansion of post-secondary education in the NYS prison system.
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A04158 Actions:

02/01/2017referred to correction
03/22/2017reported referred to ways and means
01/03/2018referred to ways and means
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A04158 Committee Votes:

CORRECTION Chair:Weprin DATE:03/22/2017AYE/NAY:10/3 Action: Favorable refer to committee Ways and Means
De La RosaAye

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A04158 Floor Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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A04158 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2017-2018 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                    February 1, 2017
        Introduced  by  M.  of  A.  AUBRY,  JAFFEE, CAHILL, COOK, ORTIZ, TITONE,
          PERRY, HOOPER, TITUS, COLTON -- Multi-Sponsored by -- M. of A.  GLICK,
          GOTTFRIED -- read once and referred to the Committee on Correction
        AN  ACT  to establish a commission on post-secondary correctional educa-
          tion; and providing for the repeal of such provisions upon  expiration
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. Legislative findings and intent. The legislature finds that
     2  the availability of post-secondary correctional education has the poten-
     3  tial to reduce recidivism, increase employment opportunities for inmates
     4  upon release and have a positive impact on prison safety  and  security.
     5  The  legislature  further finds that there is currently a lack of avail-
     6  able post-secondary educational opportunities for  inmates  in  the  New
     7  York state prison system.
     8    Studies have consistently found that the higher the level of education
     9  attained,  the more likely a former inmate will be to obtain gainful and
    10  stable employment, and the less likely he or she will be  to  engage  in
    11  future  criminal activity. However, in 1994, federal tuition assistance,
    12  in the form of Pell Grants, for individuals incarcerated in federal  and
    13  state  correctional  facilities was terminated with the enactment of the
    14  Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act. Then, in 1995,  New  York
    15  prohibited  inmates  from  accessing  state  funds  through  the Tuition
    16  Assistance Program  (TAP)  for  post-secondary  correctional  education.
    17  According  to  a report published by the Correctional Association of New
    18  York in January, 2009, entitled "Education From  the  Inside,  Out:  The
    19  Multiple  Benefits  of  College  Programs  in  Prison," only four out of
    20  seventy post-secondary  correctional  education  programs  continued  to
    21  operate  in  New  York following the termination of TAP availability for
    22  inmates.

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 4158                             2
     1    According to the Correctional Association of New York report,  statis-
     2  tical  evidence  from  several highly regarded studies demonstrates that
     3  college programming in prison is a highly  effective  tool  in  reducing
     4  recidivism.  For  example, the report cites a 1991 study released by New
     5  York's department of correctional services that found inmates who earned
     6  a  degree  while incarcerated had a 26.4 percent recidivism rate whereas
     7  44.6 percent of participants who did not earn a degree were returned  to
     8  custody.  The report cites another influential study, published in 2004,
     9  "Post-Secondary Correctional Education and Recidivism:  A  Meta-Analysis
    10  of Research Conducted 1990-1999," that found inmates who participated in
    11  post-secondary correctional education programs recidivated 22 percent of
    12  the  time  and those who did not participate had a recidivism rate of 41
    13  percent. Further, the New York state  commission  on  sentencing  reform
    14  recently  reported  that  post-secondary correctional education programs
    15  have been shown to reduce recidivism by up to  40%  and  the  commission
    16  recommended  that  more post-secondary educational opportunities be made
    17  available to inmates.
    18    The Correctional Association of New  York  report  also  asserts  that
    19  in-prison  college  programs  are  a  cost-effective method of improving
    20  public safety. The report states that "the cost differences in education
    21  versus incarceration in New York, plus the short- and long-term benefits
    22  of a better educated population, makes investment  in  higher  education
    23  for  incarcerated  individuals  and people in the community smart fiscal
    24  policy." The report cites one cost-benefit analysis that found the  cost
    25  to a state per crime prevented by offering education to inmates is about
    26  $1,600  while the cost per crime prevented by extending prison sentences
    27  is $2,800. In other words, according to the study, a $1 million  invest-
    28  ment  in  incarceration  will  prevent about 350 crimes, while that same
    29  investment in education will prevent more than 600 crimes  meaning  that
    30  correctional  education  may be almost twice as cost effective as incar-
    31  ceration.
    32    In addition, research suggests that post-secondary programs in  prison
    33  can  provide  inmates  with  an  incentive for good behavior and greatly
    34  enhance an inmate's problem-solving skills thereby reducing tension  and
    35  violent  interactions  between  inmates  and  staff  and  among inmates.
    36  Reportedly, inmates who attend post-secondary  educational  classes  are
    37  among  the  best-behaved  of  the  inmate  population because there is a
    38  strong incentive to avoid conduct that could result in discipline and  a
    39  loss of credit for the college program.
    40    Despite  the  potential benefits of post-secondary correctional educa-
    41  tion programs, only a relatively  small  number  of  programs  currently
    42  operate  in  the  New  York  state prisons funded mostly through private
    43  sources, federal grants for youth offenders or through small legislative
    44  initiative grants.
    45    § 2. A temporary state commission, to be known as the New  York  state
    46  commission   on   post-secondary   correctional  education,  hereinafter
    47  referred to as the commission, is hereby created to  examine,  evaluate,
    48  and  make recommendations concerning the availability, effectiveness and
    49  need for expansion of post-secondary education in  the  New  York  state
    50  prison  system.  The  issues  to  be  considered by the commission shall
    51  include, but not be limited to, the following:
    52    a. the benefits of post-secondary correctional education in  improving
    53  public safety by reducing recidivism;
    54    b.  the impact of post-secondary correctional education on an inmate's
    55  employment opportunities upon release from prison;

        A. 4158                             3
     1    c. the impact of post-secondary correctional education on an  inmate's
     2  reintegration into society upon release from prison;
     3    d.  the  cost  savings, if any, associated with reduced recidivism and
     4  the successful reintegration of released inmates who  have  participated
     5  in post-secondary correctional education;
     6    e. the impact of post-secondary correctional education on prison safe-
     7  ty and security;
     8    f. the need, if any, to expand post-secondary correctional educational
     9  programs  in  the  New York state prison system and the costs associated
    10  with such an expansion; and
    11    g. recommendations for funding options, including but not  limited  to
    12  the  Tuition  Assistance Program, to increase that availability of post-
    13  secondary correctional education in the New York state prison system.
    14    § 3. The commission shall consist of fifteen members, to be  appointed
    15  as  follows:  four  members shall be appointed by the governor and shall
    16  include the commissioner of the department of correctional services, and
    17  one member each from the division of parole, the  division  of  criminal
    18  justice services and the New York state higher education services corpo-
    19  ration;  six members, with three appointments by the temporary president
    20  of the senate and three by the speaker of the assembly, shall be  repre-
    21  sentatives  of private providers of post-secondary education services in
    22  New York state prisons, criminal justice advocates, and academic profes-
    23  sionals; one member shall be appointed by the  minority  leader  of  the
    24  senate;  and one member shall be appointed by the minority leader of the
    25  assembly. The remaining members shall be the chancellor, or his  or  her
    26  designee,  of the city university of New York, the chancellor, or his or
    27  her designee, of the state university of New York and  the  commissioner
    28  of the state department of education. The commission shall be co-chaired
    29  by the commissioner of the state department of correctional services and
    30  the  commissioner  of the state department of education. The vice-chair-
    31  person of the commission shall be a representative of one of the private
    32  providers of post-secondary  education  services  as  appointed  by  the
    33  chairpersons.  Vacancies  in  the  membership of the commission shall be
    34  filled in the manner provided for original appointments.
    35    § 4. The members of the commission shall receive no  compensation  for
    36  their services, but shall be allowed their actual and necessary expenses
    37  incurred  in  the  performance of their duties hereunder. To the maximum
    38  extent feasible, the commission shall be entitled to request and receive
    39  and shall utilize and be provided with such facilities,  resources,  and
    40  data  of  any court, department, division, board, bureau, commission, or
    41  agency of the state or any political subdivision  thereof  as  it  deems
    42  necessary or desirable to carry out properly its powers and duties here-
    43  under.
    44    §  5.  For the accomplishment of its purposes, the commission shall be
    45  authorized and empowered to undertake any studies, inquiries, surveys or
    46  analyses it may deem relevant in cooperation with or by  agreement  with
    47  any  other  public or private agency. The commission shall meet and hold
    48  public hearings or private meetings within or  without  the  state,  and
    49  shall  have  all  the  powers of a legislative committee pursuant to the
    50  legislative law.
    51    § 6. The commission shall make a report of its findings, including any
    52  recommendations for legislative action as  it  may  deem  necessary  and
    53  appropriate, to the governor, the temporary president of the senate, the
    54  speaker  of  the  assembly,  the  chairperson of the senate committee on
    55  crime victims, crime and correction and the chairperson of the  assembly

        A. 4158                             4
     1  committee  on correction no later than one year after the effective date
     2  of this act.
     3    §  7.  This  act shall take effect immediately and shall expire and be
     4  deemed repealed one year after such effective date;  provided  that  the
     5  appointment  of  members to the New York state commission on post-secon-
     6  dary correctional education shall be completed within sixty days of such
     7  effective date.
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