In order to decrease the number of individuals incarcerated and under probation and parole supervision, the County of Santa Clara is focusing on developing a comprehensive effort that addresses the needs and risks of former offenders. The County's Reentry Program represents a new way of doing business.
On March 1, 2011, the Board of Supervisors established a cross-system Re-Entry Network to develop and implement a re-entry plan for the county. The Network is expected to identify comprehensive re-entry and recidivism reduction strategies to elevate existing efforts, streamline processes to link inmates to effective in-custody and community-based programming, identify cost-saving methods, and prepare Santa Clara County for the realignment of parolees and low-level prisoners under the Public Safety Realignment Act (AB109).
In an effort to reduce the number of offenders incarcerated in the California prison system and assist in alleviating the State's financial crisis, AB 109 was signed into law on April 4, 2011. Subsequently, on June 30, 2011, AB 117 was signed by Governor Brown, further outlining the provisions of Realignment. This Act shifts the responsibility for inmates convicted of non-serious, non-violent, non-sex offenses to local jurisdictions by requiring them to serve their sentence in local jails rather than in State prisons, pursuant to the newly added Penal Code §1170(h). All inmates serving local sentences will now come under the post-release supervision of local agencies, Post Release Community Supervision (PRCS) offenders. Additionally, this legislation changes the sentencing laws to keep these offenders from being committed to State prisons.
The Reentry Resource Center: Five Years of Community Collaboration
Since its founding in 2012, the County of Santa Clara Reentry Resource Center has created opportunities for more than 10,000 residents reentering the community from jail or prison. The Center celebrated its fifth anniversary on February 23rd with more than 200 elected and public officials, county and community partners, clients, former clients and residents. The following video was presented at that event to celebrate the Center’s five years of development and growth and to communicate the Center’s services and its impact on our community. The Reentry Resource Center has developed partnerships with more than 75 community, faith-based and County departments. These champions of Reentry are working collaboratively to help empower Santa Clara County residents exiting incarceration to create healthy, happy and productive lives.