Gov. Jerry Brown’s constitutional amendment to make some nonviolent felons eligible for early parole qualified for the November ballot on Thursday – the statutory deadline – after a harried signature-gathering effort and intervention from the California Supreme Court.
The measure’s qualification, the 15th for the fall ballot, followed a Supreme Court ruling earlier this month overturning a bid to block the measure on procedural grounds.
In a sweeping effort to reduce prison crowding and ease effects of California’s fixed-term sentencing standards, Brown’s initiative would make some nonviolent felons eligible for early release and give the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation authority to award credits for good behavior.
Brown signed – and later came to regret – more rigid sentencing standards enacted when he was governor before, from 1975 to 1983. The measure is opposed by the California District Attorneys Association.