House Bill No. 405
Introduced By wyatt, christiaens, dowell
A Bill for an Act entitled: "An Act creating a community supervised release program to divert
offenders from prison; and providing an effective date."
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:
NEW SECTION. Section 1. Community supervised release program for
nonviolent FELONY offenders pilot
program -- purpose. (1) There is a pilot program called the "Community Supervised Release Program for Nonviolent
FELONY Offenders". A total of 100 offenders may be served in the pilot program, and there may be pilot projects in two
FOUR locations across the state.
(2) The purpose of the program is to provide:
(A) a less costly and restrictive alternative to incarceration for offenders who have
not committed violent felony offenses
that holds an offender accountable, PROVIDES FOR RESTITUTION TO VICTIMS, provides for community safety, and
addresses the deficiencies and needs of the offenders in order to give the offender the opportunity to obtain treatment, to
gain and maintain stable employment, and to meet the responsibilities of being a member of society; AND
(B) AN INCREASED LEVEL OF SUPERVISION FOR PROBATION AND PAROLE OFFENDERS WHO HAVE VIOLATED THE TERMS OF THEIR SUPERVISION.
NEW SECTION. Section 2. Definitions. As used in [sections 1 through 8], the following definitions apply:
(1) "Department" means the department of corrections as provided in 2-15-2301.
(2) "Educational entity" means a public or private institution of higher education that has graduate programs in corrections and human services-related disciplines.
(3) "Immediate family" means a person who lives with the offender and is related by blood, marriage, or adoption.
offender has no relatives by blood, marriage, adoption, or law the offender may name a person with whom the offender
lives to be considered as a member of immediate family for the purposes of [sections 1 through 8], if the person agrees to
abide by the requirements imposed on members of an immediate family.
(4) "Mental health professional" means any social worker, clinical social worker, professional counselor, clinical professional counselor, psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist, or other professional who is licensed or certified to provide mental health services in this state pursuant to Title 37.
(5) "Offender" means an offender who has
not committed a violent felony offense, as defined in 46-18-1001 45-2-101.
(6) "SPONSOR" MEANS A PERSON, NAMED BY THE OFFENDER, WITH WHOM THE OFFENDER LIVES AND WHO AGREES TO ABIDE BY THE REQUIREMENTS IMPOSED ON MEMBERS OF AN IMMEDIATE FAMILY.
NEW SECTION. Section 3. Qualifications to be selected as pilot project. (1) A judicial district may apply to the department to be selected as a site of a pilot project.
(2) For a judicial district to qualify for the project, the jurisdiction must have an intensive supervision program and
electronic monitoring. (3)(2) (A) For the purposes of application, the judicial district shall organize a community supervised release program team
composed of: (a)(I) a representative of an educational entity; (b)(II) a probation and parole officer; (c) an intensive supervision officer, if necessary; (d)(III) a certified chemical dependency counselor; and (e)(IV) a mental health professional.
(B) THE TEAM REQUIRED IN SUBSECTION (2)(A) MAY INCLUDE A VICTIM.
(4)(3) The members of a team shall enter into a written agreement that outlines each member's and each member's agency's
responsibilities and that contains a provision for compliance with the requirements of the agreement. (5)(4) The program may pursue Job Training Partnership Act funding; any other federal, state, or local government
funding; and any private funding to develop programs for the offenders sentenced to this program.
NEW SECTION. Section 4. Application -- eligibility criteria. (1) Upon conviction
for an offense other than a violent
OF A felony offense , as defined in 46-18-1001, and after a presentence investigation report, as provided in 46-18-111, that
recommends a sentence of imprisonment, a probation and parole officer or the offender's counsel may make application to
the court for participation in the community supervised release program. APPLICATION MAY ALSO BE MADE
DURING REVOCATION PROCEEDINGS OF AN OFFENDER'S PROBATION OR PAROLE.
(2) AFTER A REPORT OF VIOLATION HAS BEEN WRITTEN ON A PROBATIONER OR PAROLEE, IF THE DETERMINATION IS THAT THE OFFENDER NEEDS CLOSER SUPERVISION THAN STANDARD PROBATION AND PAROLE SUPERVISION CAN PROVIDE BUT THAT IT IS NOT NECESSARY TO INCARCERATE, THEN THE PROBATION AND PAROLE OFFICER OR THE OFFENDER'S COUNSEL MAY MAKE APPLICATION TO THE COURT FOR PARTICIPATION IN THE COMMUNITY SUPERVISED RELEASE PROGRAM.
(2)(3) The community supervised release program team members shall review the application and make a determination on
eligibility. Eligibility requirements for application into the program are:
(a) an offender must be convicted of
an A FELONY offense other than a violent felony offense, as defined in 46-18-1001;
(b) the presentence investigation report prepared by the probation and parole officer must indicate that a prison sentence is recommended for this offender OR THAT THE OFFENDER NEEDS CLOSER SUPERVISION THAN REGULAR PROBATION AND PAROLE STANDARDS BUT THAT INCARCERATION MAY NOT BE NECESSARY;
an offender shall agree to submit to electronic monitoring and related requirements THE PROBATION OR PAROLE
VIOLATION REPORT PREPARED BY THE PROBATION AND PAROLE OFFICER MUST INDICATE THE NEED
FOR CLOSER SUPERVISION BUT MUST INDICATE THAT INCARCERATION MAY NOT BE NECESSARY;
(d) an offender shall agree to submit to chemical dependency and mental health evaluation;
(e) an offender shall indicate an amenability to treatment and aftercare for chemical dependency or mental health, as may be determined through evaluation;
(f) the members of an offender's immediate family OR THE SPONSOR shall agree to participate in counseling and treatment activities that are considered necessary for the success of the offender in the program;
(g) the offender shall agree to participate in education, job readiness, or job placement activities as developed for the offender;
(h) the offender shall agree to participate in victim-offender mediation, if the victim desires mediation;
(i) the offender shall agree to participate in other programming as considered necessary by the team; and
(j) the offender shall agree to pay part or all of the costs of treatment, supervision, or other activities required by the program, based on the current and future ability to pay in a reasonable payment schedule over the duration of the sentence OR BY CONTRACT PAST THE DURATION OF THE SENTENCE.
NEW SECTION. Section 5. Acceptance to program -- program responsibilities. (1) Upon acceptance into the program, the team shall meet as soon as possible and organize the initial intake and screening procedures.
(2) Intake and screening procedures include:
(a) contact with the victim to determine whether the victim is amenable to victim-offender mediation and, if the victim is amenable, organizing an initial meeting before sentencing;
(b) contact with the members of the offender's immediate family OR THE SPONSOR to determine
their THE MEMBERS'
OR SPONSOR'S concerns, needs, and responsibilities;
(c) a chemical dependency and mental health evaluation;
(d) an educational and job assessment to determine what educational needs or job placement needs an offender may have. If an offender is currently enrolled in an educational program or is currently employed, the evaluation must include an assessment of the program or job and any needs to stabilize or assist the success of that program.
(e) a general assessment of other programming needs, such as anger management, financial management, and life skills; and
(f) a general assessment of residential and housing needs. This component may include use of a community corrections facility or program, as defined in 46-18-104, or use of a residential aftercare setting, an offender's own home, or other community resources that contribute to the success of the program and that can operate in conjunction with the requirements for electronic monitoring.
(3) The members of the team and each member's responsibilities are as follows:
(a) A person who is the representative of an educational entity is the team leader. The team leader is responsible for
developing the overall program. The team leader shall develop a program using students of a graduate program in a
discipline related to human services, such as social work, criminal justice, sociology, or psychology, who assist the
offender in the development of a program and who organize the contacts WITH A PROBATION AND PAROLE
OFFICER for the
electronic monitoring, chemical dependency and mental health evaluation, chemical dependency and
mental health treatment, and other programming as needed.
The team member responsible for setting up the electronic monitoring element of the program is the intensive
supervision officer or the probation and parole officer. The probation and parole officer shall participate in the capacity of
coordinating with the other team members for the purpose of conducting the presentence investigation, as provided in
46-18-111, and OR PREPARING THE REPORT OF VIOLATION FOR THE development of the plan to present to the
(c) A certified chemical dependency counselor is responsible for conducting the initial chemical dependency evaluation and for setting up a treatment and aftercare plan that the offender shall follow to successfully complete the program.
(d) A mental health professional is responsible for conducting the initial mental health evaluation and for setting up a treatment and aftercare plan as needed, in conjunction with the chemical dependency counselor, that the offender shall follow to successfully complete the program.
(4) The team shall recommend imposition of the following conditions:
(a) 24-hour-a-day electronic monitoring for the first 3 months of the sentence, unless the offender resides at a community
corrections facility; (b)(A) financial responsibility for dependents; and (c)(B) payment of costs of restitution and treatment in a reasonable schedule of payment over the duration of the sentence.
The payments may be deferred for an initial period of time to allow the offender to receive treatment, job training, and job
(5) The team may recommend the imposition of any combination of the following conditions, as determined by the needs of the community, the victim, and the offender:
an extension of the 24-hour-a-day electronic monitoring beyond the initial 3 months;
(B) DAY REPORTING OR TRANSITIONAL LIVING AT A PRERELEASE CENTER;
(b)(C) chemical dependency education and counseling; (c)(D) chemical dependency treatment and aftercare if determined necessary by a certified chemical dependency counselor; (d)(E) mental health treatment and aftercare if determined necessary by a mental health professional; (e)(F) specialized treatment and education, such as programs for check-writing offenders and domestic violence offenders; (f)(G) family counseling; (g)(H) parenting classes; (h)(I) education; (i)(J) vocational training; (j)(K) job training and placement programs or full-time employment; (k)(L) financial management and budgeting training, using the offender's restitution and other payments; or (l)(M) life skills such as health and nutrition, anger management, and crisis management.
NEW SECTION. Section 6. Recommendations for sentence and conditions. (1) Upon completion of the initial intake
and evaluation, the team shall
meet to HELP THE PROBATION AND PAROLE OFFICER develop a substitute
recommendation to the sentencing judge on the type of sentence that is appropriate, a recommendation for the length of
time that the offender needs to successfully complete the treatment and programming necessary, and the conditions that the
offender must meet to be considered successful in the completion of the program.
(2) The probation and parole officer who performed the presentence investigation OR PREPARED THE REPORT OF
include ATTACH the substitute recommendations for sentencing with the officer's presentence
investigation report OR REPORT OF VIOLATION to the court.
(3) The sentencing judge may suspend
or defer an offender's sentence as provided in 46-18-201 and OR place the offender,
under the commitment to the department, in a community supervised release program and impose any combination of the
conditions listed in [section 5] as recommended by the team and any additional conditions the judge believes to be
(4) The offender is subject to the provisions of 46-18-203 upon failure to successfully complete the program. Upon a minor violation of the conditions of the sentence, sanctions may be applied in an effort to maintain an offender in the program prior to revocation proceedings.
NEW SECTION. Section 7. Department responsibilities. (1) The department shall provide
devices and equipment and may assess a fee on the offender for the actual cost of supplying the devices and equipment A
PROBATION AND PAROLE OFFICER TO BE THE LEAD IN THE SUPERVISION OF THE OFFENDERS
PARTICIPATING IN THE PROGRAM PROVIDED FOR IN [SECTIONS 1 THROUGH 8].
The department is responsible for the payment of treatment and programming. The department may assess a
reasonable fee on the offender, based on the offender's ability to pay throughout the duration of the sentence, for the use of
electronic monitoring devices and equipment and treatment and supervision costs. These costs may not exceed those
charged for other offenders in other department programs. (3) If an offender is unable to pay for services, the department shall coordinate with other state and local agencies to obtain
any services for which the offender is eligible. (4)(3) The department or judicial district may pursue federal or private grant funds to assist the program in the provision of
services for the offender. (5)(4) The department shall negotiate a fee to be paid to the educational entity for the costs associated with supervising
students and coordinating the community supervised release program.
NEW SECTION. Section 8. Juvenile
nonviolent offender program. (1) Subject to the provisions in Title 41, chapter 5,
a youth who has been adjudicated as a delinquent and who qualifies for placement at a state youth correctional facility, as
defined in 41-5-103, may be placed in the court-supervised DEPARTMENT-SUPERVISED release program for nonviolent
YOUTH offenders. This program may be used as a disposition under 41-5-523 as a commitment to the department.
(2) The youth placement committee, as provided in 41-5-525, shall perform the responsibilities of the community supervised release program team in determining the conditions of the youth's disposition. The representative of the educational entity shall coordinate with the youth placement committee to organize any contacts necessary for the programming for the youth.
NEW SECTION. Section 9. Codification instruction. [Sections 1 through 8] are intended to be codified as an integral part of Title 46, chapter 18, and the provisions of Title 46, chapter 18, apply to [sections 1 through 8].
NEW SECTION. Section 10. Effective date. [This act] is effective July 1, 1997.