An estimated 8,000 people on parole will be discharged from the supervision of the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision by the end of month as part of the Less is More law approved last September by Gov. Kathy Hochul.
Corrections officials announced the releases come as part of effort to apply the "spirit of the law" for technical warrants and absconder dispositions to qualified parole violators. The measure is meant to reduce the number of people in prison and jails as well as supervision through a credit system.
Under the law, a credit system of "30 for 30" in which a person being released can earn up to 30 days' credit off their sentence for every 30 days they are not violation status. So far, more than 5,400 people have been discharged from supervision and estimated 8,000 will be released from supervision or custody by the end of this week.
“When the Governor signed Less Is More into law she transformed the parole system in New York State. In the spirit of the law, DOCCS staff immediately went to work implementing some provisions long before the law took effect,” DOCCS Acting Commissioner Anthony J. Annucci said. “I want to thank my staff for the hard work and the hours it took to prepare the Department, as well as work with many law enforcement agencies and legal entities to ensure our compliance with the law on March 1st of this year. Parole Officers will continue to play a vital role in keeping our communities safe, while leveraging a variety of resources to ensure successful outcomes for formerly incarcerated individuals.“
The announcement comes as state lawmakers and Hochul are negotiating a potential package of criminal justice law changes that could include new circumstances for which cash bail is required in criminal cases — a move opposed by reform advocates.
As of last week, the state counted 25,949 people with parolee status in New York, down from 31,019 at the end of February.