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MARCH 12, 1998

Page 52


The estimate for House File 2504 is hereby submitted as a fiscal note pursuant to Joint Rule 17 and as a correctional impact statement pursuant to Section 2.56, Code of Iowa.  Data used in developing this fiscal note and correctional impact statement are available from the Legislative Fiscal Bureau to members of the Legislature upon request.

House File 2504 enhances the penalties for certain drug offenses and the crime of voluntary absence.  The Bill adds a community service requirement to the penalty for certain offenses of manufacture, delivery, or possession with intent to deliver controlled substances and increases certain fines.  The penalties for unlawful possession of a controlled substance is increased up to a Class D felony for subsequent offenses.  Coumunity service is added for each level of penalty.

The penalty for the crime of voluntary absence from custody is increased from a serious misdemeanor to a Class D felony for convicted felons.  The penalty remains a serious misdemeanor for voluntarily absent misdemeanants.  Language is added to prohibit the Department of Corrections from counting any time during which the person is not in custody due to escape or voluntary absence when calculating the persons's term of confinement.


1. Charge, conviction, and sentencing patterns will remain stable over the projection period.
2. Prisoner length of stay, revocation rates, and other corrections policies and practices will remain stable.
3. The law will become effective on July 1, 1998, and it will be six months before the first offender enters the correctional system.
4. Three aggravated misdemeanants and 190 Class D felons who currently are not required to do community service will receive community service sentences.  Four more offenders will receive additional community service hours.
5. It is estimated that one case per year could receive the $2,500 fine increase.
6. An estimated 232 persons will receive enhanced penalties annually.  They are: 108 who have a prior conviction for possession of a controlled substance other than marijuana, 32 who have two or more prior convictions for possession of a controlled substance other than marijuans, 56 for possession of marijuana with one prior conviction, and 36 for possession of marijuana with two or more prior convictions.
7. The change in the penalty for voluntary absence will result in 253 Class D felonies that were previously serious misdemeanors.  Those sentenced to prison will serve an additional six months.
8. The change in the voluntary absence penalty will result in 92 fewer jail admissions in FY 1999 and 184 fewer in the following years.  The average jail sentence for these individuals is 55 days.  The average cost per jail day statewide is $55.



MARCH 12, 1998

Page 53



House File 2504 is expected to result in a net increase to the prison population by 94 inmates in FY 1999, by 263 inmates in KY 2000, and by 380 inmates in FY 2003.

The number of jail days served will decrease by 5,060 in FY 1999, and by 10,120 in the follnuing years.


House File 2504 is expected to increase the costs for the prison system by approximately $412,000 in FY 1999, by $1.2 million in FY 2000, and by $1.7 million FY 2003.

The costs for county jails will be reduced by $278,000 in FY 1999 and by $557,000 in the following years.


Criminal and Juvenile Justice Planning Division,
    Department of Human Rights
Department of Corrections

(LSB 3243hv, MDF)

FILED MARCH 11, 1998


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