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Measure Details

Death Penalty. Initiative Statute.

California Ballot Measure - Proposition 34

Election: Nov. 6, 2012 (General)
Outcome: Failed

Budget, Spending and Taxes
Government Operations
Death Penalty


Argument For


Argument Against


- Repeals death penalty as maximum punishment for persons found guilty of murder and replaces it with life imprisonment without possibility of parole.

- Applies retroactively to persons already sentenced to death.

- States that persons found guilty of murder must work while in prison, as prescribed by the Department
of Corrections and Rehabilitation, with their wages subject to deductions to be applied to any victim
restitution fines or orders against them.

- Creates $100 million fund to be distributed to law enforcement agencies to help solve more homicide and rape cases.

Summary of estimate by Legislative Analyst and Director of Finance of fiscal impact on state and local government:

- State and county savings related to murder trials, death penalty appeals, and corrections of about
$100 million annually in the first few years, growing to about $130 million annually thereafter. This
estimate could be higher or lower by tens of millions of dollars, largely depending on how the measure is
implemented and the rate at which offenders would otherwise be sentenced to death and executed in the

- One-time state costs totaling $100 million for grants to local law enforcement agencies to be paid over then next four years.

Measure Text

Repeals death penalty and replaces it with life imprisonment without possibility of parole. Applies retroactively to existing death sentences. Directs $100 million to law enforcement agencies for investigations of homicide and rape cases. Fiscal Impact: Ongoing state and county criminal justice savings of about $130 million annually within a few years, which could vary by tens of millions of dollars. One-time state costs of $100 million for local law enforcement grants.

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