< Back to H.R. 2656 (113th Congress, 2013–2015)

Text of the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013

This bill was introduced on July 11, 2013, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted. The text of the bill below is as of Jul 11, 2013 (Introduced).

I

113th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 2656

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

July 11, 2013

(for himself, Mr. Scott of Virginia, Mr. Conyers, Mr. Coble, Mr. Marino, Mr. Schiff, and Mr. Jeffries) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

A BILL

To enhance public safety by improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the Federal prison system with offender risk and needs assessment, individual risk reduction incentives and rewards, and risk and recidivism reduction.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013 .

2.

Purposes

The purposes of the Act are to—

(1)

enhance public safety by improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the Federal prison system, and to reduce the recidivism rates of Federal offenders;

(2)

establish offender risk and needs assessment as the cornerstone of a more effective and efficient Federal prison system;

(3)

implement a validated post-sentencing risk and needs assessment system that relies on dynamic risk factors to provide Federal prison officials with a roadmap to address the individual criminogenic needs of Federal offenders, manage limited resources, and enhance public safety;

(4)

enhance existing recidivism reduction programs and prison jobs by incentivizing Federal prisoners to reduce their individual risk of recidivism by participating and successfully completing such programs, and by satisfactorily holding such jobs over time;

(5)

reward Federal prisoners who actually reduce their individual risk of recidivism by providing them with the ability to earn and accrue time credits, and to transfer into prerelease custody when they are assessed as low risk and have earned sufficient time credits;

(6)

expand the implementation of evidence-based intervention and treatment programs designed to reduce recidivism, including educational and vocational training programs, and prison jobs, so all Federal prisoners have access to them during their entire terms of incarceration;

(7)

perform regular outcome evaluations of programs and interventions to assure that they are evidence-based and to suggest changes, deletions, and expansions based on the results; and

(8)

assist the Department of Justice to address the underlying cost structure of the Federal prison system and ensure that the Department can continue to run our prisons safely and securely without compromising the scope or quality of the Department’s many other critical law enforcement missions.

3.

Duties of the Attorney General

(a)

In general

The Attorney General shall carry out this section in consultation with—

(1)

the Director of the Bureau of Prisons;

(2)

the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts;

(3)

the Director of the Office of Probation and Pretrial Services; and

(4)

the Director of the National Institute of Justice.

(b)

Duties

The Attorney General shall, in accordance with subsection (c)

(1)

develop an offender risk and needs assessment system in accordance with section 4;

(2)

develop recommendations regarding recidivism reduction programs and productive activities in accordance with section 5;

(3)

conduct ongoing research and data analysis on—

(A)

the best practices relating to the use of offender risk and needs assessment tools;

(B)

the best available risk and needs assessment tools and the level to which they rely on dynamic risk factors that could be addressed and changed over time, and on measures of risk of recidivism, individual needs, and responsivity to recidivism reduction programs;

(C)

the most effective and efficient uses of such tools in conjunction with recidivism reduction programs, productive activities, incentives, and rewards; and

(D)

which recidivism reduction programs are the most effective—

(i)

for prisoners classified at different recidivism risk levels; and

(ii)

for addressing the specific needs of prisoners;

(4)

on a biennial basis, review the system developed under paragraph (1) and the recommendations developed under paragraph (2), using the research conducted under paragraph (3), to determine whether any revisions or updates should be made, and if so, make such revisions or updates;

(5)

hold periodic meetings with the individuals listed in subsection (a) at intervals to be determined by the Attorney General; and

(6)

report to Congress in accordance with section 6.

(c)

Methods

In carrying out the duties under subsection (b), the Attorney General shall—

(1)

consult relevant stakeholders; and

(2)

make decisions using data that is based on the best available statistical and empirical evidence.

4.

Post-sentencing risk and needs assessment system

(a)

In general

Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Attorney General shall develop and release for use by the Bureau of Prisons an offender risk and needs assessment system, to be known as the Post-Sentencing Risk and Needs Assessment System (referred to in this Act as the System), which shall provide risk and needs assessment tools (developed under subsection (b)) in order to, for each prisoner—

(1)

classify the recidivism risk level of prisoners as low, moderate, or high as part of the intake process, and assign the prisoner to appropriate recidivism reduction programs or productive activities based on that classification, the prisoner’s specific needs, and in accordance with subsection (c);

(2)

reassess the recidivism risk level of prisoners periodically, and reassign the prisoner to appropriate recidivism reduction programs or productive activities based on the revised classification, the specific needs of the prisoner, and the successful completion of recidivism reduction programs in accordance with subsection (d); and

(3)

determine when a prisoner who has been classified as having a low recidivism risk level is ready to transfer into prerelease custody in accordance with subsection (d).

(b)

Risk and needs assessment tools

(1)

In general

The Attorney General shall develop the risk and needs assessment tools to be used in the System developed under subsection (a) by using the research and data analysis conducted under section 3(b)(3) on the best available risk and needs assessment tools available as of the date of the enactment of this Act, and determining, using the methods described in section 3(c), how to make the most effective and efficient tools to accomplish for each prisoner, the assessments described in paragraphs (1) through (3) of subsection (a).

(2)

Use of existing risk and needs assessment tools permitted

In carrying out this subsection, the Attorney General may determine that the best available risk and needs assessment tools available as of the date of the enactment of this Act are sufficiently effective and efficient for the purpose of accomplishing for each prisoner, the assessments described in paragraphs (1) through (3) of subsection (a), and may determine that those are the tools to be used in the System instead of developing new tools.

(3)

Validation on prisoners

In carrying out this subsection, the Attorney General shall statistically validate any tools that the Attorney General selects for use in the System on the Federal prison population, or ensure that the tools have been so validated.

(c)

Assignment of recidivism reduction programs

The System shall provide guidance on the kind and amount of recidivism reduction programming or productive activities that should be assigned for each classification of prisoner and shall provide—

(1)

that the higher the risk level of a prisoner, the more programming the prisoner shall participate in;

(2)

information on the best ways that the Bureau of Prisons can tailor the programs to the specific needs of each prisoner so as to best lower each prisoner’s risk of recidivating; and

(3)

that all prisoners, even those classified as having a low or no risk of recidivating, shall participate in recidivism reduction programs or productive activities throughout their entire term of incarceration.

(d)

Recidivism reduction program and productive activity incentives and rewards

The System shall provide incentives and rewards for prisoners to participate in and complete recidivism reduction programs and productive activities as follows:

(1)

Family phone and visitation privileges

A prisoner who is successfully participating in a recidivism reduction program or a productive activity shall receive, for use with family (including extended family), close friends, mentors, and religious leaders—

(A)

up to 30 minutes per day, and up to 900 minutes per month that the prisoner is permitted to use the phone; and

(B)

additional time for visitation at the prison, as determined by the warden of the prison.

(2)

Time credits

(A)

In general

A prisoner who successfully participates in a recidivism reduction program or productive activity shall receive time credits as follows:

(i)

Prisoners who have been classified as having a low risk of recidivism shall earn 30 days of time credits for each month that they successfully participate in a recidivism reduction program or productive activity.

(ii)

Prisoners who have been classified as having a moderate risk of recidivism shall earn 15 days of time credits for each month that they successfully participate in a recidivism reduction program.

(iii)

Prisoners who have been classified as having a high risk of recidivism shall earn 8 days of time credits for each month that they successfully participate in a recidivism reduction program.

(B)

Availability

A prisoner may not receive time credits under this paragraph for a recidivism reduction program or productive activity that the prisoner successfully participated in—

(i)

prior to the date of the enactment of this Act; or

(ii)

during official detention prior to the date that the prisoner’s sentence commences under section 3585(a) of title 18, United States Code.

(C)

Prerelease custody

A prisoner who is classified as having a low risk of recidivism, who has earned time credits in an amount that is equal to the remainder of the prisoner’s imposed term of imprisonment, and who has been determined by the warden of the prison to be otherwise qualified for prerelease custody, shall be eligible to be transferred into prerelease custody in accordance with section 3624(c)(3) of title 18, United States Code. The System shall provide guidelines, for use by the Bureau of Prisons for prisoners placed in home confinement under section 3624(c)(3) of title 18, United States Code, for different levels of supervision and consequences based on the prisoner’s conduct, including a return to prison and a reassessment of recidivism risk level under the System as a result of certain behavior.

(D)

Ineligible prisoners

A prisoner convicted of an offense under any of the following provisions of law shall be ineligible to receive time credits:

(i)

Section 113(a)(1) of title 18, United States Code, relating to assault with intent to commit murder.

(ii)

Section 115 of title 18, United States Code, relating to influencing, impeding, or retaliating against a Federal official by injuring a family member, except for a threat made in violation of that section.

(iii)

Any section of chapter 10 of title 18, United States Code, relating to biological weapons.

(iv)

Any section of chapter 11B of title 18, United States Code, relating to chemical weapons.

(v)

Section 351 of title 18, United States Code, relating to Congressional, Cabinet, and Supreme Court assassination, kidnaping, and assault.

(vi)

Section 793 of title 18, United States Code, relating to gathering, transmitting, or losing defense information.

(vii)

Section 794 of title 18, United States Code, relating to gathering or delivering defense information to aid a foreign government.

(viii)

Any section of chapter 39, United States Code, relating to explosives and other dangerous articles, except for section 836 (relating to the transportation of fireworks into a State prohibiting sale or use).

(ix)

Section 842(p) of title 18, United States Code, relating to distribution of information relating to explosive, destructive devices, and weapons of mass destruction, but only if the conviction involved a weapon of mass destruction (as defined in section 2332a(c)(2) of such title).

(x)

Subsections (f)(3), (i), or (h) of section 844 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the use of fire or an explosive.

(xi)

Section 924(e) of title 18, United States Code, relating to unlawful possession of a firearm by a person with 3 or more convictions for a violent felony or a serious drug offense.

(xii)

Section 1030(a)(1) of title 18, United States Code, relating to fraud and related activity in connection with computers.

(xiii)

Any section of chapter 51 of title 18, United States Code, relating to homicide, except for section 1112 (relating to manslaughter), 1115 (relating to misconduct or neglect of ship officers), or 1122 (relating to protection against the human immunodeficiency virus).

(xiv)

Any section of chapter 55 of title 18, United States Code, relating to kidnaping.

(xv)

Any offense under chapter 77 of title 18, United States Code, relating to peonage, slavery, and trafficking in persons, except for sections 1592 through 1596.

(xvi)

Section 1751 of title 18, United States Code, relating to Presidential and Presidential staff assassination, kidnaping, and assault.

(xvii)

Section 1841(a)(2)(C) of title 18, United States Code, relating to intentionally killing or attempting to kill an unborn child.

(xviii)

Section 1992 of title 18, United States Code, relating to terrorist attacks and other violence against railroad carriers and against mass transportation systems on land, on water, or through the air.

(xix)

Section 2113(e) of title 18, United States Code, relating to bank robbery resulting in death.

(xx)

Section 2118(c)(2) of title 18, United States Code, relating to robberies and burglaries involving controlled substances resulting in death.

(xxi)

Section 2119(3) of title 18, United States Code, relating to taking a motor vehicle (commonly referred to as carjacking) that results in death.

(xxii)

Any section of chapter 105 of title 18, United States Code, relating to sabotage, except for section 2152.

(xxiii)

Any section of chapter 109A of title 18, United States Code, relating to sexual abuse, except that with regard to section 2244 of such title, only a conviction under subsection (c) of that section (relating to abusive sexual contact involving young children) shall make a prisoner ineligible under this subparagraph.

(xxiv)

Section 2251 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the sexual exploitation of children.

(xxv)

Section 2251A of title 18, United States Code, relating to the selling or buying of children.

(xxvi)

Any of paragraphs (1) through (3) of section 2252(a) of title 18, United States Code, relating to certain activities relating to material involving the sexual exploitation of minors.

(xxvii)

A second or subsequent conviction under any of paragraphs (1) through (6) of section 2252A(a) of title 18, United States Code, relating to certain activities relating to material constituting or containing child pornography.

(xxviii)

Section 2260 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the production of sexually explicit depictions of a minor for importation into the United States.

(xxix)

Section 2283 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the transportation of explosive, biological, chemical, or radioactive or nuclear materials.

(xxx)

Section 2284 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the transportation of terrorists.

(xxxi)

Section 2291 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the destruction of a vessel or maritime facility.

(xxxii)

Any section of chapter 113B of title 18, United States Code, relating to terrorism.

(xxxiii)

Section 2340A of title 18, United States Code, relating to torture.

(xxxiv)

Section 2381 of title 18, United States Code, relating to treason.

(xxxv)

Section 2442 of title 18, United States Code, relating to the recruitment or use of child soldiers.

(xxxvi)

Section 57(b) of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 ( 42 U.S.C. 2077(b) ), relating to the engagement or participation in the development or production of special nuclear material.

(xxxvii)

Section 92 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 ( 42 U.S.C. 2122 ), relating to prohibitions governing atomic weapons.

(xxxviii)

Section 101 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 ( 42 U.S.C. 2131 ), relating to the atomic energy license requirement.

(xxxix)

Section 224 or 225 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 ( 42 U.S.C. 2274 , 2275), relating to the communication or receipt of restricted data.

(xl)

Section 236 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 ( 42 U.S.C. 2284 ), relating to the sabotage of nuclear facilities or fuel.

(xli)

Section 60123(b) of title 49, United States Code, relating to damaging or destroying a pipeline facility.

(xlii)

Section 401(a) of the Controlled Substances Act ( 21 U.S.C. 841(a) ), relating to manufacturing or distributing a controlled substance, but only in the case of a conviction for an offense described in subparagraphs (A), (B), or (C) of subsection (b) of that section for which death or serious bodily injury resulted from the use of such substance.

(xliii)

Section 276(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act ( 8 U.S.C. 1326(b)(1)(2) ), relating to the reentry of a removed alien, but only if the alien is described in paragraph (1) or (2) of subsection (b) of that section.

(xliv)

Any section of the Export Administration Act of 1979 (50 U.S.C. App. 2401 et seq.).

(xlv)

Section 206 of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (50 U.S.C. 1705).

(xlvi)

Section 601 of the National Security Act of 1947 ( 50 U.S.C. 3121 ), relating to the protection of identities of certain United States undercover intelligence officers, agents, informants, and sources.

(xlvii)

A third or subsequent conviction of—

(I)

any crime of violence (as such term is defined in section 3156(a)(4) of title 18, United States Code); or

(II)

any drug trafficking offense.

(3)

Risk reassessments and level adjustment

A prisoner who successfully participates in recidivism reduction programs or productive activities shall receive periodic risk reassessments (with high and moderate risk level prisoners receiving more frequent risk reassessments), and if the reassessment shows that the prisoner’s risk level or specific needs have changed, the Bureau of Prisons shall so change the prisoner’s risk level or information regarding the prisoner’s specific needs and reassign the prisoner to appropriate recidivism reduction programs or productive activities based on such changes.

(4)

Relation to other incentive programs

The incentives described in this subsection shall be in addition to any other rewards or incentives for which a prisoner may be eligible.

(e)

Penalties

The System shall provide guidelines for the Bureau of Prisons to reduce rewards earned under subsection (d) for prisoners who violate prison, recidivism reduction program, or productive activity rules, which shall provide—

(1)

general levels of violations and resulting reward reductions;

(2)

that any reward reduction that includes the forfeiture of time credits shall be limited to time credits that a prisoner earned as of the date of the prisoner’s rule violation, and not to any future credits that the prisoner may earn; and

(3)

guidelines for the Bureau of Prisons to establish a procedure to restore time credits that a prisoner forfeited as a result of a rule violation based on the prisoner’s individual progress after the date of the rule violation.

(f)

Bureau of Prisons Training

The Attorney General shall develop training programs for Bureau of Prisons officials and employees responsible for administering the System, which shall include—

(1)

initial training to educate employees and officials on how to use the System in an appropriate and consistent manner, as well as the reasons for using the System;

(2)

continuing education; and

(3)

periodic training updates.

(g)

Quality assurance

In order to ensure that the Bureau of Prisons is using the System in an appropriate and consistent manner, the Attorney General shall monitor and assess the use of the System, which shall include conducting periodic audits of the Bureau of Prisons regarding the use of the System.

5.

Recidivism reduction program and productive activity recommendations

The Attorney General shall—

(1)

review the effectiveness of recidivism reduction programs and productive activities that exist as of the date of the enactment of this Act in prisons operated by the Bureau of Prisons;

(2)

review recidivism reduction programs and productive activities that exist in State-operated prisons throughout the United States; and

(3)

make recommendations to the Bureau of Prisons regarding—

(A)

the expansion of programming and activity capacity and the replication of effective programs and activities described in paragraph (1); and

(B)

the addition of any new effective programs and activities that the Attorney General finds, using the methods described in section 3(c), would help to reduce recidivism.

6.

Report

Beginning on January 1, 2015, and annually thereafter, the Attorney General shall submit a report to the Committees on the Judiciary of the Senate and the House of Representatives and the Subcommittees on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies of the Committees on Appropriations of the Senate and the House of Representatives, a report that contains the following:

(1)

A summary of the activities and accomplishments of the Attorney General in carrying out this Act.

(2)

An assessment of the status and use of the System by the Bureau of Prisons, including the number of prisoners classified at each risk level under the System at each prison.

(3)

A summary and assessment of the types and effectiveness of the recidivism reduction programs and productive activities in prisons operated by the Bureau of Prisons, including—

(A)

evidence about which programs and activities have been shown to reduce recidivism;

(B)

the capacity of each program and activity at each prison, including the number of prisoners along with the risk level of each prisoner enrolled in each program; and

(C)

identification of any gaps or shortages in capacity of such programs and activities.

(4)

An assessment of the Bureau of Prisons’ compliance with section 3621(h) of title 18, United States Code.

(5)

An assessment of progress made toward carrying out the purposes of this Act, including any savings associated with—

(A)

the transfer of low risk prisoners into prerelease custody under this Act and the amendments made by this Act; and

(B)

any decrease in recidivism that may be attributed to the implementation of the System or the increase in recidivism reduction programs and productive activities required by this Act and the amendments made by this Act.

7.

Use of System and recommendations by Bureau of Prisons

(a)

Implementation of System generally

Section 3621 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

(h)

Post-Sentencing Risk and Needs Assessment System

(1)

In general

Not later than 180 days after the Attorney General completes and releases the Post-Sentencing Risk and Needs Assessment System (referred to in this subsection as the System) developed under the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013, the Bureau of Prisons shall—

(A)

implement the System and complete a risk and needs assessment for each prisoner, regardless of a prisoner’s length of imposed term of imprisonment; and

(B)

expand the effective recidivism reduction programs (as such term is defined under section 8 of the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013) and productive activities it offers and add any new recidivism reduction programs and productive activities necessary to effectively implement the System, and in accordance with the recommendations made by the Attorney General under section 5 of that Act and with paragraph (2).

(2)

Phase-in

In order to carry out paragraph (1), so that every prisoner has the opportunity to participate in and complete the kind and amount of recidivism reduction programming or productive activities in order to effectively implement the System and that the Attorney General recommends, the Bureau of Prisons shall, subject to the availability of appropriations, provide such recidivism reduction programs and productive activities—

(A)

for not less than 20 percent of prisoners by the date that is one year after the date on which the Bureau of Prisons completes a risk and needs assessment for each prisoner under paragraph (1)(A);

(B)

for not less than 40 percent of prisoners by the date that is 2 years after the date on which the Bureau of Prisons completes a risk and needs assessment for each prisoner under paragraph (1)(A);

(C)

for not less than 60 percent of prisoners by the date that is 3 years after the date on which the Bureau of Prisons completes a risk and needs assessment for each prisoner under paragraph (1)(A);

(D)

for not less than 80 percent of prisoners by the date that is 4 years after the date on which the Bureau of Prisons completes a risk and needs assessment for each prisoner under paragraph (1)(A); and

(E)

for all prisoners by the date that is 5 years after the date on which the Bureau of Prisons completes a risk and needs assessment for each prisoner under paragraph (1)(A) and thereafter.

(3)

Priority during phase-in

During the phase-in period described in paragraph (2), the priority for such programs and activities shall be accorded based on, in order, the following:

(A)

The recidivism risk level of prisoners (as determined by the System’s risk and needs assessment), with low risk prisoners receiving first priority, moderate risk prisoners receiving second priority, and high risk prisoners receiving last priority.

(B)

Within each such risk level, a prisoner’s proximity to release date.

(4)

Preliminary expansion of recidivism reduction programs and authority to use incentives

Beginning on the date of the enactment of the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013, the Bureau of Prisons may begin to expand any recidivism reduction programs and productive activities that exist at a prison as of such date, and may offer to prisoners who successfully participate in such programming and activities the incentives and rewards described in—

(A)

section 4(d)(1) of such Act; and

(B)

section 4(d)(2)(A) of such Act, except a prisoner may receive up to 30 days of time credits for each recidivism reduction program or productive activity in which the prisoner successfully participates, with the amount of time credits to be determined by the warden of the prison.

(5)

Recidivism reduction partnerships

In order to expand recidivism reduction programs and productive activities, the Bureau of Prisons shall develop policies for the warden of each prison to enter into partnerships with any of the following:

(A)

Nonprofit organizations, including faith-based and community-based organizations that will deliver a recidivism reduction program in a prison, on a paid or volunteer basis.

(B)

Institutions of higher education (as defined in section 101 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 20 U.S.C. 1001 ) that will deliver an academic class in a prison, on a paid or volunteer basis.

(C)

Private entities that will, on a volunteer basis—

(i)

deliver vocational training and certifications in a prison;

(ii)

provide equipment to facilitate vocational training or employment opportunities for prisoners;

(iii)

employ prisoners; or

(iv)

assist prisoners in prerelease custody or supervised release in finding employment.

.

(b)

Prerelease custody

(1)

In general

Section 3624(c) of title 18, United States Code, is amended—

(A)

by redesignating paragraphs (3) through (6) as paragraphs (4) through (7), accordingly;

(B)

by inserting after paragraph (2) the following:

(3)

Prisoners with a low risk of recidivating

In the case of a prisoner that has been classified under the Post-Sentencing Risk and Needs Assessment System developed under the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013 as having a low risk of recidivating, has earned time credits in an amount that is equal to the remainder of the prisoner’s imposed term of imprisonment, and has been classified by the warden of the prison as otherwise qualified to be transferred into prerelease custody, the following shall apply:

(A)

The warden of the prison shall submit a recommendation that the prisoner be transferred into prerelease custody to the United States district court in which the prisoner was convicted, and a judge for such court shall, not later than 30 days after the warden submits such recommendation, approve or deny the recommendation; however, a judge may only deny a recommendation to transfer a prisoner into prerelease custody under this paragraph if the judge finds by clear and convincing evidence that the prisoner should not be transferred into prerelease custody based only on evidence of the prisoner’s actions after the conviction of such prisoner and not based on evidence from the underlying conviction, and submits a detailed written statement regarding such finding to the warden of the prison recommending that the prisoner be transferred into prerelease custody.

(B)

The failure of a judge to approve or deny a recommendation to transfer at the end of the 30 day period described in subparagraph (A) shall be treated as an approval of such recommendation.

(C)

Upon the approval of a recommendation under subparagraph (A) or 30 days after the warden submits a recommendation, whichever occurs earlier, the prisoner shall be placed in home confinement, provided that the prisoner will be able to stay in a residence that the warden approves, and the time limits under paragraphs (1) and (2) shall not apply.

(D)

The prisoner shall remain in home confinement until the prisoner has served not less than 85 percent of the prisoner’s imposed term of imprisonment.

(E)

The warden shall use the guidelines developed by the Attorney General under section 4(d)(2)(C) of the Public Safety Enhancement Act of 2013 to determine the level of supervision and consequences for certain actions for a prisoner transferred into prerelease custody under this paragraph.

.

(2)

Effective date

The amendments made by this subsection shall take effect beginning on the date that the Attorney General completes and releases the Post-Sentencing Risk and Needs Assessment System.

8.

Definitions

In this Act the following definitions apply:

(1)

Risk and needs assessment tool

The term risk and needs assessment tool means an objective and statistically validated method through which information is collected and evaluated to determine—

(A)

the level of risk that a prisoner will recidivate upon release from prison; and

(B)

the recidivism reduction programs that will best minimize the risk that the prisoner will recidivate upon release from prison.

(2)

Recidivism reduction program

The term recidivism reduction program means either a group or individual activity that—

(A)

has been shown by empirical evidence to reduce recidivism;

(B)

is designed to help prisoners succeed in their communities upon release from prison; and

(C)

may include—

(i)

classes on social learning and life skills;

(ii)

classes on morals or ethics;

(iii)

academic classes;

(iv)

cognitive behavioral treatment;

(v)

mentoring;

(vi)

substance abuse treatment;

(vii)

vocational training;

(viii)

faith-based classes or services; or

(ix)

a prison job.

(3)

Productive activity

The term productive activity means either a group or individual activity that is designed to allow prisoners classified as having a low risk of recidivism to remain productive and thereby maintain a low risk classification, and may include the delivery of the activities described in subparagraph (C) to other prisoners.

(4)

Prisoner

The term prisoner means a person who has been sentenced to a term of imprisonment pursuant to a conviction for a Federal criminal offense.

(5)

Time credit

The term time credit means the equivalent of one day of a prisoner’s sentence, such that a prisoner shall be eligible for one day of home confinement for each credit earned.

(6)

Drug trafficking offense

The term drug trafficking offense means any crime punishable under Federal, State, or local law that prohibits the manufacture, import, export, distribution, dispensing of, or offer to sell a controlled substance or counterfeit substance (as such terms are defined in section 102 of the Controlled Substances Act (21 U.S.C. 802)) or the possession of a controlled substance or counterfeit substance with intent to manufacture, import, export, distribute, or dispense.

9.

Authorization of appropriations

(a)

In general

There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out this Act $50,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2015 through 2019. Of the amount appropriated under this subsection, 80 percent shall be reserved for use by the Director of the Bureau of Prisons to implement the System under section 7 and the amendments made by that section.

(b)

Sense of Congress

It is the sense of Congress that any savings associated with reducing recidivism and reducing the prison population that result from this Act should be reinvested into further expansion of recidivism reduction programs and productive activities by the Bureau of Prisons.