Austin, Texas
May 11, 2015

Honorable Harold V. Dutton, Jr., Chair, House Committee on Juvenile Justice & Family Issues
Ursula Parks, Director, Legislative Budget Board
SB1630 by Whitmire (Relating to the commitment of juveniles in post-adjudication secure correctional facilities operated by the Texas Juvenile Justice Department and by local probation departments.), As Engrossed

The provisions of the bill that relate to juveniles adjudicated of felony conduct are the subject of this analysis. The bill would amend the Human Resources Code to require the Texas Juvenile Justice Department (TJJD) to identify and transfer eligible youth out of state residential facilities. Transferring youth out of state residential facilities will result in decreased demands for capacity however; the impact of this provision on juvenile correctional populations is indeterminate due to a lack of criteria on how eligible youth would be identified. The bill would amend the Family Code to allow only certain indeterminate sentence youth to be committed to TJJD state residential facilities. The bill would make youth found to have engaged in felony conduct who received an indeterminate sentence ineligible for commitment to TJJD state residential facilities unless the child has documented behavioral health or other special needs that cannot be met within the community. In FY2014, 715 juveniles received an indeterminate sentence and were committed to TJJD state residential facilities.  Based on an analysis of risk assessment data 17 percent would no longer be eligible for commitment and subsequent placement on juvenile parole. It is assumed these youth would instead be placed on juvenile probation. Applying these figures to the projected juvenile correctional population in fiscal year 2018, and assuming sentencing patterns not addressed in the bill remain constant, the probable impact of implementing the provisions of the bill during each of the first five years following passage is estimated as follows:

Fiscal Year Decrease In Demand for TJJD State Residential Capacity Decrease in Demand for Juvenile Parole Increase in Demand for Juvenile Probation
2016 0 0 0
2017 0 0 0
2018 69 0 69
2019 88 20 88
2020 88 63 88

Source Agencies:
LBB Staff:
UP, ESi, LM, JPo