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Earned Eligibility Program Summary: Semiannual Report April 2001-September 2001

NCJ Number
Date Published
20 pages
Based on initial hearing dispositions and earned eligibility reviews, this report provides a statistical overview of the New York State Department of Correctional Services, Earned Eligibility Program during the semi-annual reporting period, from April 2001 through September 2001.
The Earned Eligibility Program of the New York State Department of Correctional Services requires a counselor to evaluate an eligible inmate’s program performance during his/her period of incarceration. Program eligibility is based on a minimum indeterminate sentence length which cannot exceed 6-years. An evaluation takes place prior to the inmate’s initial Parole Board hearing. Evaluation results are provided to the Parole Board to be used in deciding whether to release the inmate or to deny parole. Complying with the legislative reporting requirements established in 1992 requiring semiannual earned eligibility reports this report focuses on those cases that had initial Parole Board hearings from April 2001 through September 2001. A summary is presented on earned eligibility evaluation outcomes, parole dispositions, program impact on release rates for individuals who appeared before the Board of Parole, and estimated cost savings since program implementation. During this 6-month period of time, there were 8,458 initial parole eligibility hearings. Of these initial parole eligibility hearings, 76 percent were issued a Certificate of Earned Eligibility prior to their initial Parole Board hearing with 7 percent denied a Certificate. The highest release rates were for drug offenders issued Earned Eligibility Program (EEP) Certificates (79 percent) and youthful offenders (73 percent). The purpose of the EEP is to increase the number of inmates released at their initial Parole Board hearing without increasing the risk to the community. The final section of the report provides a 3-year follow-up of releases according to earned eligibility status at the time of release for 1995 through 1997. Among the 1997 releases that were followed for 3-years, within each crime category, inmates who received EEP Certificates returned at a lower rate than inmates who were denied. The lowest return rate per major crime category was for drug offenders who were issued Certificates. The highest return rate was for youthful offenders who were denied Certificates. Tables and appendix