(Editor’s Note: The following comments in press releases were issued as the SB 10 bail reform measure made its way to the governor. Sen. Bob Hertzberg, co-author of the bill in support; Sen. Jim Nielsen, former Chair of the Board of Prison Terms in opposition)

Senator Bob Hertzberg:

“It is no secret that our criminal justice system has a host of issues that must be addressed. Eliminating wealth as a determination in pretrial detention would be a groundbreaking first step in making our criminal justice system fairer and safer. In the Jewish tradition, Pirkei Avot teaches us: ‘You are not obligated to complete the task, but neither are you free to desist from it.’ The California Legislature will continue to examine bail reform, and strengthen SB 10’s data collection and reporting requirements in order to evaluate our progress. I look forward to the future, when we can all look back at a time when we wrongly let for-profit businesses decide who stayed in jail.”

Senator Jim Nielsen:

“This is a stay-out-of-jail card.

The current bail system serves as an incentive for those accused of a crime to appear before a judge. Without a bail system and the fear of being tracked down by a bail bondsman, what is the motivation for anyone to appear in court? And what standard will be used to determine whether the accused is a flight risk?

This measure, if signed into law, will result in a worse system where victims and their loved ones will not get the justice they deserve.

Criminals will thumb their noses and dismiss court orders. With our criminal justice system already weakened by AB 109, Proposition 47 and Proposition 57, this bill will further deteriorate our public safety.

With parole supervision virtually eliminated, bail agents are the only boots-on-the- ground supervision for most convicted felons.

Under realignment reform, burglars receive nothing but a notice to appear, with little to no consequences if they do not show up in court.

The effect is no justice, and criminals are free to continue victimization.”