Honorable Jodie Laubenberg, Chair, House Committee on Elections
Ursula Parks, Director, Legislative Budget Board
HB4133 by Fallon (Relating to investigation and prosecution of certain election offenses; creating a criminal offense; increasing criminal penalties.), Committee Report 1st House, Substituted
The provisions of the bill addressing felony sanctions are the subject of this analysis. The bill would amend various sections of the Election Code as they relate to criminal offenses and penalties. Under the provisions of the bill, certain punishments would be enhanced or expanded, and one would be decreased. The bill would also create new offenses for certain behavior involving elections. These offenses would be punished by a misdemeanor or a felony, depending upon the specific circumstances of the offense.
A first degree felony is punishable by confinement in prison for life or a term from 5 to 99 years; a second degree felony is punishable by confinement in prison for 2 to 20 years; a third degree felony is punishable by confinement in prison for a term from 2 to 10 years; and a state jail felony is punishable by confinement in a state jail for a term from 180 days to 2 years or Class A misdemeanor punishment. In addition to confinement, most felony offenses are subject to an optional fine not to exceed $10,000.
Enhancing the penalty for any criminal offense and creating new criminal offenses are expected to result in increased demands on the correctional resources of the counties or of the State due to longer terms of supervision in the community or longer terms of confinement within state correctional institutions. Decreasing penalties for a criminal offense is expected to result in decreased demands on the correctional resources of the counties or of the State due to shorter terms of supervision in the community or shorter terms of confinement within state correctional institutions.
In fiscal year 2016, fewer than ten individuals were arrested, few than ten were placed under community supervision, and fewer than ten were admitted into state correctional institutions for the election offenses subject to felony enhancement under the provisions of the bill. This analysis assumes the provisions of the bill addressing felony sanctions would not result in a significant impact on the demand for state correctional resources.