Master's Theses


Political Science

Degree Name

Master of Liberal Studies (MLS)


California’s 2011 Realignment Legislation Addressing Public Safety is the most sweeping public safety reform package since shortly after California’s statehood in 1850. Traditionally, any person convicted and confined for a felony has been incarcerated and supervised by the state. Moving forward, realignment will put many convicted felons in local jails instead of state prisons. It will also place paroling offenders under local probation supervision rather than state parole. The change in parole supervision represents a monumental shift of responsibility from the state to local governments. Realignment will have major effects on local government operations and budgets. Realignment has been conceptualized for a number of years. It became a reality this year largely because of a United States Supreme Court Ruling that ordered California’s prison system to reduce its inmate population. California’s prison system has been overcrowded for the past 20 years. Realignment is expected to reduce overcrowded conditions and bring the state into compliance with the Supreme Court order. Realignment is also designed to cut costs in the state prison system. The state legislature is also hopeful that realignment will improve rehabilitation of offenders and bolster local law enforcement supervision of these offenders. Realignment is projected to make more than 25,000 inmates eligible for local incarceration and more than 29,000 eligible for local probation supervision.


Dr. Chapman Rackaway

Date of Award

Spring 2012

Document Type



© 2012 John Mineau


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