Senate Bill No. 457
(By Senators Cookman, Miller, Laird, Plymale, Kessler (Mr. President), Tucker and Snyder)
[Passed March 6, 2014; in effect ninety days from passage.]
AN ACT to amend and reenact §31-20-5h of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, relating to programs for inmates committed to state correctional facilities; requiring programs offered in regional jails to be the same as those offered in a Division of Corrections facility; requiring Division of Corrections employees or designees of the Commissioner of Corrections to provide said courses and classes; and authorizing the Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority and Division of Corrections to agree to designate certain facilities where said classes and programs are to be provided.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That §31-20-5h of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended and reenacted to read as follows:
ARTICLE 20. WEST VIRGINIA REGIONAL JAIL AND CORRECTIONAL FACILITY AUTHORITY.
§31-20-5h. Programs for inmates committed to prison.
(a) The Division of Corrections may develop and implement a cognitive behavioral program to address the needs of inmates detained in a regional jail, but committed to the custody of the Commissioner of Corrections. The program shall be developed in consultation with the Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority, and may be offered by video teleconference or webinar technology. The costs of the program shall be paid out of funds appropriated to the Division of Corrections. The program shall be covered by the rehabilitation plan policies and procedures adopted by the Division of Corrections under subsection (h), section thirteen, article twelve, chapter sixty-two of this code.
(b) In addition to subsection (a) of this section, the Division of Corrections shall make available, to each inmate in the custody of the commissioner who is detained in a regional jail facility awaiting transfer to a Division of Corrections facility, those programs and courses, as are determined by an inmate’s risk and needs assessment mandated by section thirteen, article twelve, chapter sixty-two of this code, necessary to prepare the inmate for parole. Such programming and courses shall be provided by the Division of Corrections personnel or the commissioner’s designees.
(c) The Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority shall provide the necessary facilities and equipment to effectuate this section or, upon the agreement of the Regional Jail and Correctional Facility Authority and the commissioner, other facilities may be utilized.