The legislature finds that the good time system is too static, not reactive enough, and does not create an ecosystem that drives behavioral change through incentives. The legislature finds that a study to better understand what we have and what works will inform how the legislature can change good time to prioritize the programs that work and most effectively change behavior with carrots and sticks for those who committed a crime, but are clearly making efforts to improve their lives and rehabilitate themselves. The legislature finds that a formula where completion of a program triggers automatic credit will create a clear system of incentives for those incarcerated to engage in programming and education that is directly tied with release from confinement.
The Washington state institute for public policy shall prepare an evaluation of the top five programs with the highest participation rates at the department that are classified by the institute as evidence-based, in addition to the reentry community services program in RCW 72.09.370. Program evaluations required under this section may not include the correctional postsecondary education program in RCW 72.09.460 and 72.09.465.
For each of the programs identified, the evaluation must analyze the program's effectiveness and impact on recidivism.
The institute shall submit, in compliance with RCW 43.01.036, a report on the five program evaluations, in addition to the evaluation on the reentry community services program, in accordance with this section to the legislature and the Washington state criminal sentencing task force by December 1, 2023.
The Washington state criminal sentencing task force shall develop and recommend a formula for awarding earned early release time in accordance with RCW 9.94A.729 to individuals who complete programming at the department that is recognized by the program evaluations under subsection (1) of this section as having a positive, demonstrable impact on recidivism. The task force shall identify which offenses, if any, would be ineligible for the formula developed under this subsection.
The Washington state criminal sentencing task force shall report its findings and formula recommendations, in compliance with RCW 43.01.036, to the governor and the appropriate committees of the legislature by September 1, 2024.
This section expires June 30, 2025.