CaliforniaWatch (via Sara at the Prison Law Blog) reports:
The court’s first benchmark orders the corrections department to lower it prisoner population to 167 percent of capacity by Dec. 27. The department says it expects to reach that benchmark by Jan. 27, 2012.
Corrections department spokesman Oscar Hidalgo said the delay is necessary to allow the department to get a better estimate of the state's prisoner population.
In a declaration in support of Wednesday's filing, Jay Atkinson, the department's acting deputy director of the Office of Research, said:
"CDCR forecasts population levels by using a simulation model, which employs data trends and projected new admissions, to determine how long the new admissions will stay, the number of offenders who will be returned to prison, and how long they and the current inmates will stay. …This simulation is repeated for each individual inmate until the total population is projected. After the Fall 2011 projection is completed, staff in the Office of Research will project the impact on CDCR’s population that Assembly Bill 109, the realignment legislation, will have."
The decrowding process is being executed pursuant to the Realignment law. Stay tuned in the next months for a blow-by-blow followup on the decrowding process.