2018 Louisiana Laws
Revised Statutes
TITLE 15 - Criminal Procedure
RS 15:1111 - Work release program

Universal Citation: LA Rev Stat § 15:1111 (2018)


§1111. Work release program

            A. The Department of Public Safety and Corrections is hereby authorized to establish and administer a work release program for inmates of any institution under the jurisdiction of the department.

            B. The department shall establish rules for the administration of the work release program and shall determine those inmates who may participate in the release program. Any inmate sentenced to imprisonment at hard labor shall be eligible at any time during his sentence to participate in the work release program, subject to the provisions of this Part. If any inmate violates the conditions prescribed by the department, his work release privileges may be withdrawn. Failure to report to or return from the planned employment shall be considered an escape under the provisions of R.S. 14:110. The department may approve as work release privileges, placement in universities, colleges, technical, vocational or trade schools, or in sheltered workshops or in training programs designed to improve the skills and abilities of the inmate.

            C. The department shall designate and adapt facilities for the purpose of housing inmates with work release privileges or it may arrange and contract for other facilities, including but not limited to portions of parish jails for inmates employed in the area. No inmate shall be granted work release privileges until: (1) such suitable quarters have been provided in the area of accepted or preferred employment or educational or training placement, and (2) a position of employment or educational or training placement is available for the inmate.

            D. Every inmate with work release privileges shall be liable for the cost of his room, board, clothing and other necessary expenses incident to his employment or placement unless other means of payment are approved by the department.

            E. The wages of any inmate so employed shall be collected by the agency or organization operating the work release program and deposited in a public banking institution. An accurate account of the financial status of each inmate shall be maintained and shall be subject to the approval of the secretary of the department.

            F. The wages of any such inmate shall be disbursed by the department for the following purposes and in the order stated, subject to the approval of the secretary of the department:

            (1) The board of the inmate including food and clothing;

            (2) Necessary travel expense to and from work and other incidental expenses of the inmate;

            (3) Support of the inmate's dependents, if any;

            (4) Payment, either in full or ratably of the inmate's obligations acknowledged by him in writing, or which have been reduced to judgment;

            (5) The balance if any, to the inmate upon his discharge.

            G. The wages of an inmate so employed shall be not less than the customary wages for an employee performing similar services.

            H.(1) Deductions for room, board, and other administrative and incidental costs resulting from participation in a work release program authorized by this Section shall not exceed seventy percent of the gross wages received by the inmate. This deduction rate shall be established by the secretary of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections.

            (2) For the purposes of this Subsection, administrative and incidental costs are all costs other than room and board.

            I.(1) Any inmate who has been convicted of forcible or second degree rape (R.S. 14:42.1), aggravated arson (R.S. 14:51), armed robbery (R.S. 14:64), attempted murder (R.S. 14:27 and 29), or attempted armed robbery (R.S. 14:27 and 64), shall be eligible to participate in a work release program during the last six months of his term. Any person sentenced as a habitual offender pursuant to R.S. 15:529.1 shall be eligible to participate in a work release program during the last year of his term if the offender has obtained a low-risk level designation determined by a validated risk assessment instrument approved by the secretary of the Department of Public Safety and Corrections. Notwithstanding the provisions of this Section and unless the inmate is eligible at an earlier date, those inmates who have served a minimum of fifteen years in the custody of the department for those crimes enumerated in this Section shall be eligible to participate in a work release program during the last twelve months of their terms.

            (2) Any inmate convicted of producing, manufacturing, distributing, or dispensing or possession with intent to produce, manufacture, distribute, or dispense a controlled dangerous substance classified in R.S. 40:964 shall be eligible to participate in the work release program if the inmate is otherwise in compliance with the standards for work release.

            J. No inmate employed in the work release program shall be employed in a position which would necessitate his departure from the state, except for those inmates assigned to work release programs who are employed in industries off the coast of Louisiana.

            K. The department shall compile statistical data on the incidence of work release violations by participating inmates. Violations shall include the commission of new offenses as well as any transgressions that result in disciplinary action or removal from the program. The data shall indicate the nature of the incident, the age of the offender, his original offense, the length of his sentence, his prior criminal record, and any other characteristic found to be predictive of success or failure. This information shall be used by the department to guide it in formulating program policies and eligibility standards and shall be available to the legislature upon request.

            L. In no case shall inmates participating in a work release program be authorized or permitted to work or to continue to work on a project or job involved in a labor dispute.

            Added by Acts 1968, No. 187, §§1, 3. Amended by Acts 1970, No. 444, §1; Acts 1978, No. 337, §2; Acts 1978, No. 510, §1; Acts 1985, No. 786, §1; Acts 2003, No. 634, §1; Acts 2006, No. 173, §1; Acts 2008, No. 31, §1; Acts 2009, No. 266, §1; Acts 2010, No. 809, §1; Acts 2014, No. 37, §1; Acts 2015, No. 184, §2.

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