Setting aside personal and moral views on the death penalty, Proposition 34 makes sense economically.
If passed, the proposition would abolish the death penalty in California and automatically resentence all of the current prisoners on death row to life without the possibility of parole ““ the maximum possible sentence in the state.
With the passing of this proposition, valuable money would be saved in the already overburdened prison system ““ estimates say around $1 million could be saved each year.
The proposition will also set aside $100 million of state funds to be used by law enforcement agencies to help investigate murder and rape cases.
Currently, cases subject to a death-penalty sentencing may involve at least two trials. The first determines whether the verdict is guilty; the second determines whether or not to impose the death penalty.
Prisoners sentenced to death are kept in single cells and are escorted by guards at all times. This leads to unnecessary overcrowding in prisons and becomes quite costly.
By eliminating the death penalty and thus the need for a second trial procedure, this proposition will save the state money and help free up court time for other cases.
Because Proposition 34 will help save the state money, increase safety and free up overcrowded state prisons, this board endorses a “yes” vote.