Code of the District of Columbia

Subchapter I. General.


§ 24–1301. Definitions.

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) “Commission” means the Commission on Re-Entry and Returning Citizen Affairs established by § 24-1303(a).

(2) “Director” means the Executive Director of the Office on Returning Citizen Affairs.

(3) Repealed.

(4) “Office” means the Office on Returning Citizen Affairs established by § 24-1302(a).

(5) “Returning citizens” means persons who are residents of the District who were previously incarcerated.


(Mar. 8, 2007, D.C. Law 16-243, § 2, 54 DCR 605; Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 3062(a), 60 DCR 12472.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-61 substituted “Commission on Re-Entry and Returning Citizen Affairs” for “Commission on Re-entry and Ex-Offender Affairs” in (1); substituted “Office on Returning Citizens” for “Office on Ex-Offender Affairs” in (2) and (4); repealed (3); and added (5).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3062(a) of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3062(a) of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Short Title

Section 3061 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle G of Title III of the act may be cited as the “Returning Citizens Renaming Emergency Amendment Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Section 5 of D.C. Law 16-243 provided that this act shall take effect subject to inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan.

Section 7083 of D.C. Law 17-219 repealed section 5 of D.C. Law 16-243.

Because of the codification of D.C. Law 19-319 as subchapter II of this chapter, the preexisting text, consisting of §§ 24-1301 through 24-1304, was designated as subchapter I.

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.


§ 24–1302. Establishment of the Office on Returning Citizen Affairs.

(a) There is established, as a subordinate Executive agency within the Public Safety and Justice cluster, the Office on Returning Citizen Affairs. The Office shall coordinate and monitor service delivery to returning citizens. The Office shall make recommendations to the Mayor to promote the general welfare, empowerment, and reintegration of returning citizens in the areas of employment and workforce development, health care, education, housing, and social services.

(b)(1) The Office shall be headed by an Executive Director, who shall be appointed by the Mayor with the advice and consent of the Council pursuant to § 1-523.01(a). The Director shall be a full-time employee, for whom annual compensation shall be fixed in accordance with subchapter X-A of Chapter 6 of Title 1.

(2) The Director shall:

(A) Serve as principal advisor to the Mayor on matters related to the reintegration of returning citizens into the general population;

(B) Serve as an advocate for returning citizens;

(C) Respond to recommendations and policy statements from the Commission;

(D) Identify areas for service improvement and policy development and implementation for presentation to the Mayor and the Commission by funding research, hosting symposia, and undertaking other projects;

(E) Coordinate efforts of District government agencies targeted toward returning citizens;

(F) Accept volunteer services and funding from public and private sources to supplement the budget in carrying out the duties and responsibilities of the Office;

(G) Apply for, receive, and expend any gift or grant to further the purposes of the Office;

(H) File an annual report on the operations of the Office with the Mayor and the Council;

(I) Meet and coordinate with members of the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council, as set forth in § 22-4233(a), and their designates, to disseminate information and recommendations to and from the voting members of the Commission[;]

(J) Establish a pilot program for Fiscal Year 2019 to provide transportation subsidies to returning citizens, pursuant to criteria to be developed by the Office, in the amount of $60,000[; and]

[(K)] By January 1, 2020, develop a plan to register qualified electors, as that term is defined in § 1-1001.02(2), who are in the custody of the Department of Corrections or the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services, or are returning citizens, to vote and provide them with information about the voting rights of individuals currently incarcerated or with a criminal record in the District.

(L) Establish and implement a pilot program to support the employment of 10 returning citizens through grants to employers for 2 years beginning in Fiscal Year 2021; provided, that:

(i) To qualify for the pilot program, an eligible employer shall:

(I) Register with the Office on Returning Citizen Affairs to accept applications for employment from eligible individuals;

(II) Demonstrate that potential employees in the pilot program have opportunities for advancement within the eligible employer's organization or industry;

(III) Hire one or more eligible individuals who meet the requirements of sub-subparagraph (ii) of this subparagraph;

(IV) Be located within the District;

(V) Pay each employed eligible individual at least the minimum wage required pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 10 of Title 32;

(VI) Employ each eligible individual for a minimum of 20 hours per week for a minimum of 8 weeks;

(VII) Submit an application; and

(VIII) Provide documentation as required by the Office on Returning Citizen Affairs to substantiate the satisfaction of each requirement of the pilot program for the participating eligible employer and for each eligible individual employed.

(ii) For an eligible employer to receive a grant for the employment of an eligible individual, the eligible individual must:

(I) Have been previously incarcerated;

(II) Be a resident of the District;

(III) Have completed a workforce development and life skills program within the District; and

(IV) Have been unemployed for a period of at least one month prior to being hired by the participating eligible employer.

(iii) Grants offered through the pilot program shall be disbursed:

(I) Initially, after an eligible employer has provided documentation substantiating that the eligible employer employed an eligible individual for a minimum of 20 hours per week for a minimum of 8 weeks;

(II) Subsequent to the initial disbursement, at the end of each month that the eligible individual is employed pursuant to the requirements of the pilot program;

(iv) The maximum amount of the grant disbursements offered through the pilot program to each participating eligible employer shall be:

(I) For the first year that an eligible individual is employed by a participating eligible employer, 40% of the minimum wage for a period not to exceed 40 hours per week and 2,080 hours per year for each eligible individual hired under the pilot program; and

(II) For the second year that an eligible individual is employed by the same participating eligible employer, 80% of the minimum wage for a period not to exceed 40 hours per week and 2,080 hours per year for each eligible individual hired under the pilot program.

(v)(I) The total amount of funding expended through the pilot program shall not exceed the amount budgeted for the pilot program.

(II) Eligible employers shall receive funding in the order that they successfully provide the documentation required pursuant to sub-subparagraph (i)(VII) of this subparagraph for the employment of an eligible individual.

(III) For each eligible individual for whom documentation successfully has been submitted, an amount of funds shall be set aside such that the eligible employer may be reimbursed for the employment of an eligible individual for a period no shorter than the remainder of the fiscal year during which the documentation was submitted, and the remainder of the assistance shall be subject to the availability of funding.

(M) Conduct a Paralegal Fellowship Initiative pilot program that places a cohort of returning citizen students in an accredited, university-based paralegal certification program located in the District of Columbia, while providing the students with support services necessary for their success.

(N) By December 1, 2021, coordinate with youth-serving government agencies, non-government entities, and individuals to conduct and submit to the Council a comprehensive needs assessment for children in the District who have experienced the incarceration of a parent. The assessment shall:

(i) Examine the impact on children resulting from parental incarceration;

(ii) Identify the social, emotional, economic, educational, housing, health, mental health, and other needs of children impacted by parental incarceration;

(iii) Estimate the number of children who are currently, or have been, impacted by parental incarceration in total and by ward; and

(iv) Specify the gaps between existing services available in the community and the identified needs of children impacted by parental incarceration.

(O) By March 1, 2022, coordinate with youth-serving government agencies, non-government entities, and individuals to submit a strategic plan to the Council that outlines how the District can specifically meet the social, emotional, economic, educational, housing, health, mental health, and other needs of children whose parents are incarcerated. The strategic plan shall include:

(i) The timeline and resources necessary to meet the identified needs; and

(ii) Recommendations for any policy or legislative reforms necessary to meet the needs of children impacted by parental incarceration.

(3) The Office shall have staff as funded by appropriations and federal or private grants.

(4) The Director may communicate and coordinate with and seek information from the federal Bureau of Prisons ("BOP"), including by:

(A) Developing and maintaining a database containing the name, location of incarceration, and contact information for each District resident incarcerated by the BOP who is expected to be released within the next 6 months; and

(B) Contacting each District resident incarcerated by the BOP who is expected to be released within the next 6 months to provide:

(i) Information detailing available housing and employment resources, including any necessary application forms;

(ii) The Office's contact information; and

(iii) The necessary information to apply for birth certificates and non-driver identification cards.


(Mar. 8, 2007, D.C. Law 16-243, § 3, 54 DCR 605; Jan. 19, 2012, D.C. Law 19-80, § 2(a), 58 DCR 8908; Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 3062(b), 60 DCR 12472; Dec. 13, 2018, D.C. Law 22-197, § 301(a), 65 DCR 9554; Apr. 26, 2019, D.C. Law 22-309, § 4, 66 DCR 909; Dec. 3, 2020, D.C. Law 23-149, §§ 1062, 1072, 3043, 67 DCR 10493; Apr. 27, 2021, D.C. Law 23-278, § 2, 68 DCR 001154.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 24-1301.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 19-80, in subsec. (b)(2), deleted “and” from the end of subpar. (G ), substituted “; and” for a period the end of par. (H), and added par. (I).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-61 substituted “Office on Returning Citizens” for “Office on Ex-Offender Affairs” in the section heading and (a); and substituted “returning citizens” for “ex-offender” throughout the section.

Applicability

Applicability of D.C. Law 23-278: § 3 of D.C. Law 23-278 provided that the change made to this section by § 2 of D.C. Law 23-278 is subject to the inclusion of the law’s fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan. Therefore that amendment has not been implemented.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3072(a) of Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-458, Oct. 3, 2018, 65 DCR 11212).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3072(a) of Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-434, July 30, 2018, 65 DCR 8200).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3062(b) of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3062(b) of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Short Title

Section 3061 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle G of Title III of the act may be cited as the “Returning Citizens Renaming Emergency Amendment Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.


§ 24–1303. Establishment of the Commission on Re-Entry and Returning Citizen Affairs.

(a) There is established the Commission on Re-Entry and Returning Citizen Affairs to advise the Mayor, the Council, and the Director on the process, issues, and consequences of the reintegration of returning citizens into the general population.

(b)(1) The Commission shall consist of 15 public voting members appointed by the Mayor with the advice and consent of the Council pursuant to § 1-523.01(a). There shall also be 13 ex-officio non-voting members, including the following officials or their designees:

(A) Attorney General;

(B) Director of the Department of Human Services;

(C) Director of the Department of Health;

(D) Director of the Department of Housing and Community Development;

(E) Director of the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs;

(F) Superintendent of Education of the District of Columbia;

(G) President of the University of the District of Columbia;

(H) Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department;

(I) Director of the Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services;

(J) Director of the Department of Employment Services;

(K) Director of the Office of Human Rights;

(L) Director of the Department of Behavioral Health; and

(M) Director of the Addiction Prevention and Recovery Administration, or the administrative head of the agency or the successor agency within the Department of Health responsible for administering substance abuse prevention and treatment services.

(2) Ex-officio members or their designees shall develop and implement policies and programs in their respective agencies that will ensure that the purposes of this chapter are accomplished. Ex-officio members or their designees shall meet with the Director, at a minimum, once per quarter in planning and coordinating policies and programs to assist in the successful reintegration of returning citizens into the general population.

(3)(A) Voting members shall be appointed with due consideration for significant representation from the returning citizens community and established District-based public, private, nonprofit, and volunteer community organizations involved with the provision of services for returning citizens, the incarcerated, and their families.

(B) Voting members of the Commission shall serve terms of 3 years except, that of the initial members, 5 shall be appointed for a term of 3 years, 5 shall be appointed for a term of 2 years, and 5 shall be appointed for a term of one year. Members may be reappointed, but shall not serve more than 3 consecutive full terms. Terms for the initial Commission members shall begin on the date that a majority of the members are sworn in, which date shall become the anniversary date for all subsequent appointments.

(C) If a vacancy occurs on the Commission, the Mayor shall appoint, with the advice and consent of the Council, a successor to fill the unexpired portion of the term in accordance with § 1-523.01(a).

(4) The Mayor shall appoint the Chairperson of the Commission.

(5) All members of the Commission shall serve without compensation. Expenses incurred by the Commission or by its individual members, when authorized by the Chairperson, shall become an obligation to the extent of appropriated District of Columbia and federal funds designated for that purpose.

(6) The Commission shall adopt rules of procedure.

(7) The Commission shall meet monthly. The meetings shall be held in space provided by the District government and shall be open to the public. A quorum to transact business shall consist of a majority, plus one, of the voting members.

(8) At least one of the 15 public voting members of the Commission shall be a member of a group, organization, or service provider that focuses on the needs of female returning citizens.

(c) The Commission shall:

(1) Serve as an advocate for returning citizens;

(2) Review and submit to the Mayor, the Council, and the Office an annual report that shall be submitted to the Mayor and the Council within 90 days after the end of each fiscal year, be the subject of a public hearing before the Council, and include:

(A) A summary of the recommendations of the Commission, including a summary of required monthly meetings pursuant to subsection (b)(7) of this section;

(B) A budget breakdown, with supporting budget documents, detailing the fiscal implications of the Commission’s recommendations;

(C) Executive branch policy and legislative priorities of the Commission for the following fiscal year; and

(D) A summary of community outreach efforts undertaken by members of the Commission;

(3) Develop sustainable relationships and coordinate with federal, state and private agencies working with returning citizens;

(4) Participate in public hearings and promote community dialogue concerning the issues confronting returning citizens;

(5) Review and comment on proposed legislation and regulations, policies, and programs and make policy recommendations on issues affecting returning citizens;

(6) Develop policy and provide continuing review of the planning undertaken by the Office; and

(7) Make reasonable requests for information necessary to effectuate the discharge of its responsibilities.


(Mar. 8, 2007, D.C. Law 16-243, § 4, 54 DCR 605; Jan. 19, 2012, D.C. Law 19-80, § 2(b), 58 DCR 8908; Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 3062(c), 60 DCR 12472; Dec. 13, 2018, D.C. Law 22-197, § 301(b), 65 DCR 9554.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 24-1301.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 19-80, in subsec. (b)(1), substituted “13 ex-officio” for “11 ex-officio” in the lead-in language, deleted “and” at the end of subpar. (J), substituted a semicolon for a period at the end of subpar. (K), and add subpars. (L) and (m); and rewrote subsec. (c)(2), which formerly read:

“(2) Review and submit to the Mayor, the Council, and the Office an annual report, made available to the public, that includes a comprehensive analysis of the needs of ex-offender;”

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-61 substituted “Office on Returning Citizens” for “Office on Ex-Offender Affairs” in the section heading and (a); substituted “returning citizens” for “ex-offender” throughout the section; and deleted “and returning citizens” from the end of (b)(8).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3072(b) of Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-458, Oct. 3, 2018, 65 DCR 11212).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3072(b) of Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2018 (D.C. Act 22-434, July 30, 2018, 65 DCR 8200).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3062(c) of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 3062(c) of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Short Title

Section 3061 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle G of Title III of the act may be cited as the “Returning Citizens Renaming Emergency Amendment Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.


§ 24–1304. Issuance of certificate of good standing.

(a) The Mayor is authorized to establish a program for the issuance of a certificate of good standing to any person previously convicted of a crime in the District of Columbia.

(b) A certificate of good standing shall include the following:

(1) Its date of issuance.

(2) The date the individual’s last sentence, including parole, probation, or supervised release, was completed.

(3) Any outstanding and pending charges against the individual as of the date that the certificate of good standing is issued.

(4) Any outstanding and pending writs and holds placed on the individual as of the date that the certificate of good standing is issued.

(5) A statement that the information on the certificate of good standing reflects only the records, as of the date of issuance, in the database of the Department of Corrections and all other databases to which the department has access, and that the certificate is only a statement of the individual’s status and shall not be construed as a statement of the individual’s character.

(c) An individual may petition the Mayor for a certificate of good standing at any time after his or her completion of any and all sentences, including parole, probation, or supervised release.

(d) The District of Columbia shall not be liable for the actions of an individual to whom a certificate of good standing has been issued.

(e) The Mayor, pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2 [§ 2-501 et seq.], may issue rules to implement this section.


(Mar. 8, 2007, D.C. Law 16-243, § 4a; as added June 15, 2013, D.C. Law 19-319, § 6, 60 DCR 2333.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-319 added this section.