California Assembly Speaker Karen Bass has removed a commission to reevaluate California’s sentencing laws from a package intended to cut spending on state prisons, reports the Los Angeles Times. It was unclear whether Senate leader Darrell Steinberg would go along with the Assembly’s limited version. The sentencing review is one of Steinberg’s priorities, and his house would have to approve the changes before the legislation could go to the governor.
The Assembly also cut other provisions from the package that would leave a nearly $200-million hole in the state budget. The prison package stalled last week as wary Democrats, many of whom are running for higher office, refused to go along with the version passed by the Senate. That plan would reduce the prison population by 37,000 inmates over two years. Each inmate costs $49,000 a year to house.