BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Gov. Bobby Jindal has signed a bill that will let some nonviolent drug offenders out of prison early and keep others out of jail entirely if they complete an intensive drug treatment program.
The shift to rehabilitation for low-risk offenders is estimated to save $6 million next year.
The bill creates an early release program for nonviolent criminals jailed on first and second offense charges involving drug possession and possession with intent to distribute. They'll have to serve at least two years of their sentence, have less than one year left in prison and complete drug treatment.
Others convicted of similar drug crimes could be diverted to a substance abuse treatment program under probation supervision, instead of being sent to prison.
House Bill 442 can be found at www.legis.la.gov