Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 121874
Printable PDF Format Download Adobe Reader  Clerk's Official Copy   

File Number: 121874 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-933-12 Control: County Commission
File Name: THE USE OF ELIGIBLE INMATES FOR LABOR Introduced: 9/19/2012
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 11/8/2012
Agenda Date: 11/8/2012 Agenda Item Number: 11A5
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION DIRECTING MAYOR OR MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO PREPARE A PLAN FOR THE USE OF ELIGIBLE INMATES IN THE CUSTODY OF THE MIAMI-DADE COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS AND REHABILITATION FOR WORK ON ROADS, BRIDGES, PUBLIC WORKS, OR OTHER PROJECTS
Indexes: INMATES
  JAIL
Sponsors: Jose "Pepe" Diaz, Co-Prime Sponsor
  Sally A. Heyman, Co-Prime Sponsor
  Lynda Bell, Co-Sponsor
  Esteban L. Bovo, Jr., Co-Sponsor
  Barbara J. Jordan, Co-Sponsor
  Rebeca Sosa, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 11/8/2012 11A5 Adopted P

Public Safety & Healthcare Admin Cmte 10/16/2012 2A Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Gerald Sanchez read the foregoing proposed resolution into the record. Chairman Diaz explained the purposed of this resolution was to provide a mechanism that utilized inmates to give back to the community by providing unskilled labor services in lieu of serving idle time. Commissioner Heyman asked that Miami-Dade Corrections and Rehabilitation Department Director Timothy Ryan provide the committee all information and memorandum requests her office made to the Correction’s Department over the past four years regarding utilizing individuals under that department’s custody to perform unskilled labor tasks. She asked Deputy Mayor Chip Iglesias to work collaboratively with Director Ryan to obtain this information. Commissioner Heyman expressed concern with millions of taxpayers dollars paid for criminal court appearances and noted programs were available through the Court Liaison’s office that permitted the collection of fines and fee obligations, other than restitution, at a statute assessed ten dollars per hour. She noted the county could collect by utilizing inmates to provide unskilled labor services throughout the community. She noted her intent was focused on those individuals under the custody of the Corrections Department for pre-trial; pre-adjudication; those incarcerated for traffic misdemeanors who can’t meet their financial obligation under a bail bond offense; and those on probation. She pointed out this type of program would exclude any individual incarcerated for a sex offense. She also asked Deputy Mayor Iglesias to review the Jack Cardis (phonetic) initiative that, directly through the courts, placed individuals under the custody of the Corrections Department into unskilled labor jobs. She also asked County Administration to provide a report on the City of Miami Gardens inmate program and how individuals could be used to provide animal services. Deputy Mayor Chip Iglesias noted he would provide a detailed review of the numbers provided by the Corrections Department; to reflect what individuals were being used and in what capacity. Deputy Director Marydell Guevara, Department of Corrections, explained the State, not their department, monitored individuals on probation and noted, of the approximately 5,200 inmates in county jail, about 10% were incarcerated for misdemeanors and/or sentenced. She noted the remaining 90% were unsentenced felons which made it difficult to utilize those individuals who were considered a risk. She spoke about the individuals utilized by the department in-house and the department’s collaboration with the Court’s to devise new types of sanctions that could be used. She also noted that forty to fifty percent of the individuals eligible to work did not pass medical clearance and commented on a proposed pilot project currently being negotiated that would allow the weekend inmates to report to a worksite as opposed to being detained in a facility. Chairman Diaz clarified this proposed resolution was specific to inmates providing unskilled labor. Commissioner Heyman noted many other local governments tapped into the State’s Department of Corrections (DOC) for these types of services and asked that the felon population not be overlooked. She asked Deputy Mayor Iglesias to arrange a meeting with her and other entities directly involved with, or concerned about, this type of program in order to discuss creative alternatives that could be implemented. She also asked for a report on the total number of felons statewide. Commissioner Jordan asked County Administration to provide information on other county programs throughout the State and how Miami-Dade County’s proposal compared. She asked that the report include whether sentenced or unsentenced felons were used on work crews. Deputy Director Guevara noted the State DOC was also having difficulty identifying sentenced felons that could be used on a work crew and assured that Miami-Dade County would not put anyone out in the community that was considered a flight risk or was unsentenced. Upon inquiry by Commissioner Jordan, Deputy Director Guevara explained felons sentenced to 365 days or more were sent to State prison and further noted the County was using a boot camp crew to provide assistance in waste management, transit, medical examiner’s office, and animal control. In response to Commissioner Jordan’s question regarding inmate medical clearance, Deputy Director Guevara noted a screening was required prior to placing an inmate in a work environment. She explained that forty to fifty did not pass the screening for various reasons; including but not limited, to heart problems and communicable diseases. Chairman Diaz addressed concerns expressed regarding the language in the proposed resolution that indicated work on roads, bridges and public works, noting those areas were included to permit inmate work crews in those areas for clean up, not actually to participate in county projects. He asked Assistant County Attorney Gerald Sanchez to ensure that the intent of this resolution was to allow inmates to provide unskilled labor for maintenance, landscaping, and clean-up services. Commissioner Heyman commented on the County Corrections Department’s hesitation in using felons on work crews was because of flight risk concerns, noting the State DOC consisted entirely of felons; and based on nationwide risk assessment it was determined that the flight risk of a felon was less than an individual incarcerated on a misdemeanor based on the consequences of the felony sentence versus a misdemeanor sentence. Deputy Director Guevara clarified that unsentenced felons in the custody of the County’s Corrections Department were not used; however those on supervised release were utilized for their work program. She noted their department currently didn’t have the authority and would work with the Court’s system to establish criteria for felons. Commissioner Bell spoke in support of the resolution and stressed the importance of County Administration ensuring the calculations in their reports were accurate. She asked Deputy Mayor Iglesias to also report on the possibility of Miami-Dade County using State felons. Chairman Diaz asked for further clarification on the medical screening process and asked Deputy Mayor to include the criteria used for that screening process in their report. Commissioners Bovo and Jordan asked to be shown as co-sponsor of this resolution. There being no further comments or questions, the Committee proceeded to vote on this item.

County Attorney 9/19/2012 Referred Public Safety & Healthcare Admin Cmte 10/16/2012

County Attorney 9/19/2012 Assigned Ben Simon

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION DIRECTING MAYOR OR MAYOR’S DESIGNEE TO PREPARE A PLAN FOR THE USE OF ELIGIBLE INMATES IN THE CUSTODY OF THE MIAMI-DADE COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS AND REHABILITATION FOR WORK ON ROADS, BRIDGES, PUBLIC WORKS, OR OTHER PROJECTS

BODY


WHEREAS, Sections 951.01 and 951.05 of the Florida Statutes authorize each county to “employ all persons in the jail of their respective counties under sentence upon conviction for a crime at labor upon … projects for which the governing body of the county could otherwise lawfully expend public funds and which it determines to be necessary for the health, safety, and welfare of the county”; and
WHEREAS, Section 925.08 of the Florida Statutes authorizes county commissioners to so employ pretrial detainees who are “charged with misdemeanor and confined in the county jail for failure to give bail” subject to certain requirements regarding hours (not more than 10 hours a day), compensation ($5 per day if acquitted), record keeping, etc.; and
WHEREAS, Miami-Dade County has previously expended public funds or utilized County employees to accomplish tasks such as working on roads, bridges, public works and other projects; and
WHEREAS, the use of inmate labor pursuant to Florida Statutes would alleviate the need for similar expenditures in the future,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that the County Mayor or Mayor’s designee is directed to prepare a plan for the use of those eligible inmates in the custody of the Miami-Dade Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation who pose only a minimum security risk for work on roads, bridges, public works, and other projects.



Home  |   Agendas  |   Minutes  |   Legislative Search  |   Lobbyist Registration  |   Legislative Reports
2014 BCC Meeting Calendar  |   Miami-Dade County Code of Ordinances   |   ADA Notice  |  

Home  |  Using Our Site  |  About Phone Directory  |  Privacy  |  Disclaimer

E-mail your comments, questions and suggestions to Webmaster  

Web Site © 2014 Miami-Dade County.
All rights reserved.