Legislative Office Building, Room 5200

Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 240-0200

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LCO No.: 4828

File Copy No.: 436

Senate Calendar No.: 265

OFA Fiscal Note


The amendment increases the criminal penalties for any person convicted of a second or third strike as a persistent dangerous felony offender. It provides that any person convicted of a second strike is subject to a maximum term of imprisonment that is double the maximum sentence available under current law or 40 years, whichever is greater. The amendment also provides for a mandatory prison term of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for any person convicted of a third strike.

There are currently 265 offenders under the custody of the Department of Correction (DOC) who meet the criteria to be persistent dangerous felony offenders and are eligible for a life sentence. Additionally, there are 22 crimes that would be subject to the amendment's provisions. Currently, there are 4, 612 inmates convicted for at least one of these 22 crimes. It is unknown how many offenders had previous convictions and could be affected by the amendment. However, to the extent that one offender is sentenced to a year longer sentence, the resulting cost would be $44, 165 annually.

It is likely that the number of felony trials would increase under the amendment. The magnitude of any such increase is uncertain and would depend on the use of plea (or charge) bargaining. Any substantial increase would result in a significant1 annual state cost to add personnel to the Division of Criminal Justice and/or the Public Defender Services Commission, and to cover various litigation expenses, including expert witness fees. Note that the addition of one attorney with either the Public Defender Services Commission or the Division of Criminal Justice yields a state cost of more than $100, 000 to include salary, expenses and fringe benefits.2

The preceding Fiscal Impact statement is prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for the purposes of information, summarization and explanation and does not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose.

1 OFA defines “significant” as any cost exceeding $100, 000.

2 Starting salary $61, 899 + fringe benefits equal to 60% of salary $37, 139 + expenses $3, 095 = $102, 133.