ABOUT PROP 47
The Safe Neighborhood and Schools Act of 2014
On November 4, 2014, California voters overwhelmingly passed Proposition 47, a law that changed certain low-level crimes from potential felonies to misdemeanors. The savings from reduced incarceration costs will be invested into drug and mental health treatment, programs for at-risk students in K-12 schools, and victim services.
The proponents of the reform proposal were retired San Diego Police Chief William Lansdowne and San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón. In addition to law enforcement leaders, crime victims, teachers, rehabilitation experts, business leaders and faith-based organizations support the reform.
Stops Wasting Prison Space on Low-Level Nonviolent Crimes
Changes the lowest level nonviolent drug possession and petty theft crimes from felonies to simple misdemeanors. It authorizes resentencing for anyone who is incarcerated for these offenses and poses no threat to public safety. These changes apply to juveniles as well as adults.
Redirects Hundreds of Millions to K-12 and Treatment
California counties will save hundreds of millions annually and state prison reductions will generate between $750 million to $1.25 billion in savings over the next five years alone. Those savings will be shifted into K-12 school programs (25%), victim services (10%) and mental health and drug treatment (65%).
Protects Public Safety
Focuses law enforcement resources on violent and serious crimes, and directs savings to programs that stop the cycle of crime. Prisoners may only be released if they demonstrate that they are no longer a threat to public safety.
Reduces the Collateral Consequences for Low-Level Crime
Reduces the barriers that many with felony convictions for low-level nonviolent crimes face to becoming stable and productive citizens, such as employment, housing and access to assistance programs and professional trades.