I decided to look into the Snohomish County Sheriff’s race on a request from a voter who emailed me.

 

The two top candidates areblueshirt.jpgTom Greene, and lovick_legis_thumbnail.jpgJohn Lovick.

I was told that Mr. Lovick was tough on crime and that’s why he would make a good County Sheriff. So I called him to ask him a few questions about his toughness on crime and his experience and where he stands on a few important issues to me. I am still waiting to hear back from him. So while I’m waiting for his call (I’ll report on that later) I decided to look at a bill he voted for.

 

Lovick voted in favor of the 56 page SB 6157 pilot work release program which, in trying to reduce recidivism, will mandate every county in Washington to BUILD & MAINTAIN RESIDENTIAL HOUSES IN RESIDENTIAL NEIGHBORHOODS focused on “reentry” programs for ex-cons. Doesn’t that sound warm and fuzzy? Greene, has adamently opposed this bill publically and stated, “If elected Sheriff I will continue to aggressively oppose it.” Now that’s what I like to hear coming from the elected!

 

This bill will provide education, treatment, job training yammer, yammer, yammer and “batterer” education to those men who commit love crimes on their wives.

 

Each county will be mandated to create a “local law and justice council
(Section 108 -p.10)” which members of the legislature, sheriff’s office, Department of Corrections (DOC), and many other entities will be picked to
participate on this council.

 

How much will this cost the taxpayers? Who knows, who cares!

 

The Bill claims “Attempting to keep communities safe by building more prisons and paying the costs of incarceration has proven to be expensive to taxpayers.” (Sec. 1–p. 3) Really? It costs about $26,000/ yr. (one million $$ for one prisoner for 40 years) to house a prisoner which is pretty standard for any American prison.

 

How much does it cost to rehabilitate a prisoner? Who knows and who cares! The cost is so staggering I don’t think anybody really has the answer to that
question. If the goal is to reduce recidivism then the current services available in their current fashion will work, but ONLY IF the ex-con chooses to make good choices. It doesn’t matter how many services are available that is designed to create an environment for one to make good choices if the ex-con chooses to reoffend then the money put out for creating that environment was wasted.

 

We haven’t even talked about the cost to communities, and the individual as well as the family who are the victims. Double and triple the overall cost, what ever that mysterious number is, when it is a repeat offender causing the problems.

 

What I find interesting in the government’s argument for more rehab, more
treatment, more understanding is the following list of CURRENT available resources to ex-cons, and our wonderful neighbor the sex offender:

Sec. 102. (1) Each county or group of counties shall conduct an
inventory of the services and resources available in the county or
group of counties to assist offenders in reentering the community.

(2) In conducting its inventory, the county or group of counties
should consult with the following:
(a) The department of corrections, including community corrections
officers;
(b) The department of social and health services in applicable
program areas;
(c) Representatives from county human services departments and,
where applicable, multicounty regional support networks;
(d) Local public health jurisdictions;
(e) City and county law enforcement;
(f) Local probation/supervision programs;
(g) Local community and technical colleges;
(h) The local worksource center operated under the statewide
workforce investment system;
(i) Faith-based and nonprofit organizations providing assistance to
offenders;
(j) Housing providers;
(k) Crime victims service providers; and
(l) Other community stakeholders interested in reentry efforts.
(3) The inventory must include, but is not limited to:
(a) A list of programs available through the entities listed in
subsection (2–above) of this section and services currently available in the community for offenders including, but not limited to, housing assistance, employment assistance, education, vocational training,
parenting education, financial literacy, treatment for substance abuse,
mental health, anger management, life skills training, specialized (double speak for we create it as we go) treatment programs such as batterers treatment and sex offender.

So if one commits a domestic violence against a spouse, in the name of love of course, (“Honey, I beat you because I love you.”) then there is Batterers Treatment! What will they think of next?

 

Let’s not forget all of the free transportation in cabs these people get going back and forth to these venues! We found one sex offender whose transportation cost 100K/yr because of free cab fares going back and forth to
his minimum wage job until his employer found out he was a Registered Sex Offender, and then fired him.

 

See we already have tons of services for these people and yet the argument is to reduce recidivism. If the already currently available services haven’t reduced recidivism then why does the legislature think ANOTHER EXPENSIVE GOVERNMENT PROGRAM mandating more government involvement will reduce recidivism?

 

Oh, yeah: how much will SB 6157 cost the tax payers? Who knows, who cares! The Legislature doesn’t seem to ask that question let alone care about these expensive programs costing the taxpayers so much so why should they care about the cost of building more prisons?

 

So what’s the real agenda here?

 

Another way to ask this question is why are our prisons so stuffed–according to the Legislature? Is this a even true statement? According to the gov’t logic the prisons should not be stuffed with all of these currently available government programs for those who have committed crimes and sex offenses? Recidivism should be going down! At least that is what the gov’t hacks and supporters claim whenever the public wants tougher laws for violent offenders.

 

Washington has 15 prison facilities and 114 Field and Work Release Offices across the state where the distribution of all of these programs are doled out to ex-cons.

 

We have all the programs in the world and it still WILL NOT & DOES NOT REDUCE recidivism because if it did reduce repeat crime then our prisons wouldn’t be stuffed and they wouldn’t need duplicate services. People make choices regardless of education or whether someone is rich or poor or white or black or whatever. For some reason Liberals do not believe that. They claim that if we create the right environment then the potential offender won’t commit the crime or they won’t repeat their crimes.

 

There are alot of educated rich people out there committing white collar crimes and there are alot of poor uneducated people who never commit crimes. So why does the taxpayer continue to be duped by this same OLD argument?

 

Onward, second new panel mandated by the Legislature:

 

Sec 103 ( p. 6)–The department of community, trade, and economic
development shall establish a community transition coordination network
pilot program for the purpose of awarding grants to counties or groups
of counties for implementing coordinated reentry efforts for offenders
returning to the community . . . . The employees in this program will conduct evaluations, develop criteria, review applications for grants, and submit proposals for a county’s transition coordination network.

 

How much will this cost the taxpayers to employ these wurkers? Who knows, who cares!

 

Section 103 (8) p. 8 convenes yet another advisory committee charged with meeting annually to report on annual reports, the pilot program, evals, research and includes a member from the following entities: the senate, the house, the governor’s office of financial management, the DOC, to include one representative who is a community corrections officer, the office of crime victims’ advocacy, the Washington state association of counties, association of Washington cities, a nonprofit provider of reentry services, and an ex-offender who has discharged the terms of his or her sentence.

 

Hmm, it’s starting to look like a lucrative jobs creation program for the government. After all, government bureaucracy is the fastest growing industry in Washington! Also, if you’re looking for work the DOC is advertising 900+ open jobs! Apply Now!!

 

How much will this panel cost us? Who knows, who cares!

 

In Part II Section 201 p. 13 states, “Individual reentry plans are intended to be a tool for the department of corrections to identify the needs of an offender. Individual reentry plans are meant to assist the department in targeting programming and services to offenders with the greatest need and to the extent that those services are funded and available. The state cannot meet every need that may have contributed to every offender’s criminal proclivities.”

 

Yeah, but they’re sure gonna try!

“Further, an individual reentry plan, and the programming resulting from that plan, are not a guarantee that an offender will not recidivate. Rather, the legislature intends that by identifying offender needs and offering programs that have been proven to reduce the likelihood of reoffense, the state will benefit by an overall reduction in recidivism.”

 

If this was true with all of the programs currently in operation we would see those numbers drop, so instead of coming out of our denial about these kinds of individuals let’s create a whole bunch of expensive feel good gov’t programs trying to change people based on environment.

 

Or is that the real agenda here?

The legislature admits that this new program will not guarantee a repeat in the behaviors of offenders, but admits the likelihood of the reduction of re-offense. Offenders already have counselors and probation officers and even chaplains and teachers who can help determine the needs of offenders upon release. There are already plenty of programs out there from free education and medical care to even free cab rides back and forth to all of these programs to the tune of millions of dollars. The only purpose of SB 6157 is to ensure job security for those who already have government jobs.

 

Btw, do you realize how many prisoners have a better working knowledge of law than a lot of the attorneys and legislators out there practicing? I have seen some of their pleadings and it’s quite remarkable how well educated some of these prisoners are. Gee, see what happens when they simply apply themselves?

 

PART III Section 301 p. 18 — Washington’s work release centers will be TRANSFORMED into residential reentry centers which will provide a “full range of reentry services.”

 

Like what they get now? I guess we can call this a one stop shop to meet most all of the prisoner’s needs!

 

p. 19 The DOC will convene a new WorkGroup with the following as members:

“A rep appointed by the governor, a community corrections officer, a rep
of the Washington association of prosecuting attorneys, a rep of the superior court judges association, a member selected by the Washington association of sheriffs and police chiefs, a rep from the Washington state association of counties, a rep from the association of Washington cities, a rep from contract work release facilities in the state, a rep from state-run work release facilities in the state, a rep from a nonprofit organization that works with former offenders who have completed a work release program, a crime victims’ advocate, and a rep from the department of community, trade, and economic development.”

 

Also, realize that in Section 103 (2) p. 6, the Washington State Institute for
Public Policy has a role in all of this: they get to create all of the stats necessary to keep this “Community Transitional Coordination Network” ship afloat and is mandated to cooperate with the various workgroups, committees and blue ribbons panels who design all of these programs and reports.

 

Sec 302 p. 20–Community Justice Centers will be created and is defined as a nonresidential facility staffed primarily by the department (DOC) in which recently released offenders may access services necessary to improve their successful reentry into the community. (So the 114 all ready existing facilities isn’t enough? Or is this just reinventing the wheel?)

 

“Such services may include but are not limited to, those listed in the individual reentry plan, mental health, chemical dependency, sex offender treatment, anger management, parenting education, financial literacy, housing assistance, and employment assistance.”

 

Wait a minute now: I thought that is what the residential houses were
for even though all of these prisoners can get these services in prison! Good Gawd man! When will it stop?

 

This center also provides a range of sanctions for violating offenders. I thought that was the job of the parole officer?! Now we will have Centers designed for this role too?

 

How much will these Centers cost to be built in each County of Washington?
Who cares how much it costs! It’s about rehabilitation and understanding! How dare you even ask such a question! The KC Secured Community Transitional Facility for the most violent sexual terrorists exiting McNeil Island cost 10 million dollars just to renovate an already existing structure in the SODO District. The cost for each offender each year is about $500,000. A federal judge mandated Washington to build an SCTF in each County.

 

Snohomish County is next for this wonderful neighborhood transitional facility. Some how we can’t afford the $26,000/yr to house a violent offender,
or taxpayers can’t afford to build more prisons, but we can afford these
expensive gov’t programs on the assumption that it will reduce recidivism? Some how we can pour literally billions of cha’ching into all of these programs in hopes to reduce recidivism? Sounds like gov’t intelligence to me, or perhaps gov’t conspiracy. Oh, the gov’t could never conspire against the taxpayer. Oh, Heaven’s no!

 

Okay, onward, in:

Sec 302 (p. 20) The Center isn’t an empty building. It will have “Transition Coordinators” who “shall provide information to former offenders regarding services available to them in the community regardless of the length of time since the offender’s release from the correctional facility. The transition coordinator shall, at a minimum, be responsible for the following:
(a) Gathering and maintaining information regarding services
currently existing within the community that are available to offenders
including, but not limited to:
(i) Programs offered through the department of social and health
services, the department of health, the department of licensing,
housing authorities, local community and technical colleges, other
state or federal entities which provide public benefits, and nonprofit
entities;
(ii) Services such as housing assistance, employment assistance,
education, vocational training, parent education, financial literacy,
treatment for substance abuse, mental health, anger management, and any
other service or program that will assist the former offender to
successfully transition into the community;
(b) Coordinating access to the existing services with the community
providers and provide offenders with information regarding how to
access the various type of services and resources that are available in
the community.
(6)(a) A minimum of six community justice centers shall be
operational by December 1, 2009. The six community justice centers
include those in operation on the effective date of this section.

Isn’t it wonderful knowing how much of your tax dollars will go to duplicate services HOPING that offenders won’t reoffend. I’m only on page 20 and I’m exhausted so feel free to read further. I’m stopping here.

 

The questions is this: Why do voters allow this mockery and repeat crime of theft on our hard earned money for keeping those people who work in government secure in their jobs?

 

Our economy can not possibly keep going on with this lunacy which
eventually will push the middle class right out of this state. This is only ONE bill. Think about how many other Bills the Legislature has passed just like this one!

 

Does anyone know how many different taxes this Legislature has raised
since Gregoire became Governor so as to create more job security for the government? Does this kind of Legislating anger anyone, but me? Are you making so much money that none of this matters to you?

 

Bills like this will not and never have reduced recidivism. How do I know that? Because for decades we have been fed a constant stream of these
same old promises of recidivism reduction as justification for launching all of these offender social programs that have been available for anyone who asks, but according to the word on the streets, our prisons are stuffed! Well, how can that be?

 

This bill and all of the other bills they have passed claiming it might reduce recidivism has only ensured their gov’t jobs. That’s the real agenda! Don’t be fooled by any other line they give you!

PS. As of today, 08.08.07 Lovick has not returned my call. I would like him to answer questions I have concerning Washington’s continued coddling of criminals and why the Legislature is so eager to give more mercy to criminals then give mercy to victims of violent crimes! If we are going to spend zillions on rehab, treatment, education etc. that money would be better spent on stabilizing the victims not the criminals!