January 8, 2024 — Comments

NCLC submitted comments, co-authored by the Fines and Fees Justice Center and joined by five other organizations, in response to the Bureau of Prisons’ (“BOP”) Proposed Rule on “Reservation of Funds for Reentry Under the First Step Act.”

In these comments, we argue that the BOP must revise its Proposed Rule to better accord with the First Step Act. Specifically, we urge the BOP to amend the current Proposed Rule to ensure that (1) reentry funds are made available to incarcerated people before their release, so long as the funds will be used for costs associated with their release from custody; (2) funds set aside for reentry costs are made fully and maximally available for that purpose ((including by putting them in an interest-bearing account and protecting them from being seized for any other purpose); and (3) incarcerated people who will not be released from prison are not harmed by the rule.

We also urge the BOP to publish a formal Notice of Withdrawal of its earlier proposed rule regarding the “Inmate Financial Responsibility Program.” We explain why doing so will ensure the BOP complies with the reentry objectives dictated both by the Biden Administration and by Congress in the First Step Act.