With a very short-sighted pen-stoke, Florida Governor Rick Scott recently vetoed House Bill 177: Inmate Reentry ( HB 177 ). A strongly supported bill that received a Senate vote of 40-0 and a House vote of 112-4. This was a Bill that directed the DOC to develop and administer a reentry program for nonviolent offenders, including substance abuse treatment & rehabilitative programming.
The Denson Firm is passionate about drug addiction and rehabilitation. Our recently founded charity "Paddle Addict" helps treat citizens with Alcohol or Drug Addiction and keep them out of prison. Without help, prison alone does not break addictions, and inmates commit crimes again once they are free. This bill would have assisted people in transitioning out of prison. Inmates with good behavior records would be chosen and sent to rehabilitation programs first. This program would have saved money in the long run by reducing recidivism.
The Estimated Florida Budget for Corrections is over $2 Billion. Politicians often run campaigns based on budget cuts and saving money for their state. This Bill was a perfect example of prison reform and budget reform before it was canceled. We welcome your thoughts on this subject. Follow us on Twitter and reply to #HB177 with your comments.