Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.
NewsMarylandPoliticsMaryland Politics blog

Brown releases anti-crime plan

Anthony BrownElectionsExecutive BranchDouglas F. GanslerMartin O'Malley

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Anthony G. Brown will propose a plan Friday to cut the number of released inmates who return to prison for new offenses with a variety of programs to ease the transition back to the community,

By releasing his 10-point plan, the lieutenant governor joins Democratic rivals Douglas F. Gansler and Heather R. Mizeur in offering voters a strategy for fighting crime.

Brown said his plan would build on the successes achieved under his political partner, Gov. Martin O'Malley. The lieutenant governor pointed to statistics showing drops in violent crime and recidivism since he and O'Malley took office in 2007.

Brown's plan includes his previously expressed support for the decriminalization of marijuana, which he predicted would produce savings in law enforcement costs that could help finance new programs to reduce recidivism. Unlike Mizeur, Brown's plan does not call for legalization and taxation of the drug.

The total cost of the new, mostly modest programs Brown is proposing comes to $3 million to $3.7 million a year, according to the campaign.

One initiative would enter into incentive-laden contracts with private companies that would be paid only if they achieve their goals in designing programs to keep ex-inmates from returning to prison. Others would create transition teams to help released prisoners succeed in the community, provide transitional housing to freed convicts who otherwise might end up homeless and increased investment in job training and higher education while offenders are incarcerated.

Other proposals are aimed at preventing a criminal record from becoming too high a barrier to future employment. They include a so-called "ban the box" initiative that would bar counties and municipalities from inquiring about criminal history in initial applications for non-school position. It would allow such questions after an interview. Brown is also calling for a procurement preference similar to the state's minority business participation program, for companies that employ ex-offenders.

The plan calls for "shielding" the criminal records of nonviolent offenders from public inspection. Brown's campaign manager, Justin Schall, clarified that Brown wants only some non-violent offenses to be eligible for shielding from prospective employers. Schall said details would have to be worked out with the legislature.

Michael.dresser@baltsun.com

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
Anthony BrownElectionsExecutive BranchDouglas F. GanslerMartin O'Malley
  • Complete Coverage: Baltimore Sun Poll 2014
    Complete Coverage: Baltimore Sun Poll 2014

    OpinionWorks of Annapolis conducted the poll for The Baltimore Sun. See how Maryland voters responded when asked about the gubernatorial and presidential races, as well as issues facing state lawmakers.

  • Maryland's 2014 candidates for governor
    Maryland's 2014 candidates for governor

    The 2014 campaign for Maryland governor is well under way, with contested primary races in both the Democratic and Republican parties. The primary election is June 24. Candidates include three Democrats and four Republicans. -- Michael Dresser

  • General Assembly 2014 session [Pictures]
    General Assembly 2014 session [Pictures]
  • Baltimore City mayors through the years
    Baltimore City mayors through the years

    Since its founding in 1797, Baltimore has had 57 mayors. Between 1919 and the present, 13 have occupied the mayoral chair at City Hall. Here are some facts about those mayors, along with some of their major accomplishments. --Frederick N. Rasmussen Also see: Maryland governors through the...

  • Top-paid lobbyists in Maryland for 2011
    Top-paid lobbyists in Maryland for 2011

    Eight Maryland lobbyists got more than $1 million in billing compensation, as companies spent heavily trying to promote their agendas in Annapolis. Lobbyists have to report their activities, and a listing is generated each time an advocate picks up an active client. In this gallery, you can...

  • Top-lobbying Maryland companies in 2011
    Top-lobbying Maryland companies in 2011

    Companies and organizations spent big money on lobbyists last year, looking for help in convincing the state government to act in their interests. Here are some of the biggest spenders, according to a Maryland State Ethics Commission report covering the period between Nov. 1, 2010 and Oct....

Comments
Loading