Report Title:

Early Parole Eligibility; Earned-Time


Establishes an earned-time program providing incentives for inmate rehabilitation by allowing inmates to become eligible for parole prior to serving a minimum term of imprisonment set by the Hawaii paroling authority by making consistent progress in all of the following areas: work and vocational training, social adjustment, counseling, self-help, therapeutic, educational, and literacy programs. Appropriates funds.


S.B. NO.












SECTION 1. Chapter 353, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"353-   Earned-time program. (a) There is established the earned-time program to be administered by the department of public safety. Under this program, a committed person shall be eligible for parole before the expiration of the person's minimum term set by the Hawaii paroling authority upon demonstrating progress towards rehabilitation in each of the following categories to the extent the category is available at the committed person's correctional facility:

(1) Work, vocational, or occupational training and skills, including skills such as attendance, promptness, performance, cooperation, care of materials, and safety;

(2) Social adjustment skills, including skills such as group living, housekeeping, personal hygiene, and cooperation;

(3) Counseling sessions and self-help groups;

(4) Therapeutic and other similar departmental programs; and

(5) Education or literacy programs.

(b) The following committed persons are ineligible for the earned-time program:

(1) A person serving a mandatory minimum until the person's mandatory minimum has been served; and

(2) A person serving a term of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.

(c) A committed person demonstrating progress as required under subsection (a) who is certified by the person's case manager according to departmental procedure shall earn credits under the program. Each month served according to the requirements of the earned-time program shall be equal to ten days for each month, and prorated for any portion of a month served in accordance with program requirements.

(d) The department shall review the performance of each person committed to the custody of the director, review certified records of the person's performance in the earned-time program and, consistent with the provisions of this section and procedures and standards under subsection (e), may grant, withhold, withdraw, or restore an earned-time deduction, and apply the same to the person's minimum term of imprisonment set by the Hawaii paroling authority. The review shall be conducted annually while the person is incarcerated and an earned-time deduction shall vest upon being granted. If the annual review changes the amount of earned-time vested for the person committed, then the director shall notify the crime victim, if any, of the person's adjusted minimum term completion date.

(e) The department shall develop, establish, and implement the following standards and procedures for the earned-time program:

(1) Objective standards for measuring progress in each of the categories listed in subsection (a);

(2) Procedures for evaluating, recording, and certifying progress under the earned-time program; and

(3) Procedures for awarding earned-time deductions and recording and applying days earned under the earned-time program.

(f) The following information about the earned-time program shall be made available in writing to all eligible committed persons upon request, and shall be conspicuously posted in an area of the correctional facility where committed persons may review them:

(1) Departmental standards and procedures for the earned-time program; and

(2) Equivalencies between:

(A) Days served in accordance with earned-time program requirements and credits earned; and

(B) Credits earned and days earned.

(g) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, earned-time shall not reduce the minimum term of any committed person by a period of time that is more than twenty-five per cent of the person's minimum term."

SECTION 2. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $          , or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2004-2005, for the department of public safety to establish and operate the earned-time program.

The sum appropriated shall be expended by the department of public safety for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 3. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 4. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2004.