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SCG Policy Update


Criminal Justice Reform: Changes to the Pretrial System

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In 2017-8 California State Legislative Session, SCG developed an analysis on the background and implications of Senate Bill (SB) 10 (Hertzberg), which proposed to restrict the practice of setting “monetary bail” by establishing a risk assessment tool conducted by judges. Monetary bail is a sum of money that an accused person awaiting trial can deposit to receive a temporary release from jail. The deposit conceptually acts as an incentive for accused persons to return to court. SB 10 proposed an alternative to monetary bail system with a statewide “risk assessment tool”. The tool determines whether defendants can be safely released from jail while awaiting trial. SB 10 proposed this change because the bail system unfairly affects individuals who cannot afford to pay for bail.

Funding Issue Area & Geographic Regions
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Geographic Location 

Request for Action – Public Charge

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On September 22, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a proposed rule to revise the criteria for “public charge.” Public charge refers to guidelines employed by immigration officers to determine if an immigrant is likely to become “primarily dependent on the government for subsistence.”


2020 Census: Hard-to-Count Fact Sheets

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The Census Bureau faces various challenges to an unconventional census which includes a new online response option and the pending inclusion of the citizenship question. These challenges increase the potential of undercounting historically underrepresented groups referred to as “Hard-to-Count” (HTC) communities. These groups are at higher risk of not being fully counted in the 2020 Census which can lead to unequal access to vital public and private resources.


Highlights from the California State Budget

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By Eric Schroer and Gustavo Medrano

At the end of June, Governor Brown and the Legislature negotiated a state budget of $201 billion. This summary examines the state’s spending in areas of funders’ interest, including: