Governor John Bel Edwards touts state’s criminal justice reform at Loyola University

NEW ORLEANS - Governor John Bel Edwards spoke at Loyola University's College of Law in a mock courtroom in front of a crowd of 50 people today for a special event on mass incarceration and its impact on the families of Louisiana.

Governor Edwards also talked about his criminal justice reform agenda.

In March of this year, the Louisiana Justice Reinvestment Task Force released their report, which said our corrections system was producing low public safety returns at a high cost.

The Louisiana legislature passed 10 bills aimed at making improvements. The plan hopes to reduce the prison population by 10 percent and save roughly $262 million over the next decade.

Seventy percent of those savings will go towards programs and policies that will reduce recidivism and support crime victims.

The plan takes effect November 1, and 1,400 inmates will be released that day. The governor says this is legislation that he and his fellow lawmakers can be proud of. The plan passed with support from both sides of the table.

"I think it's a good day for Louisiana," he said. "We're certainly moving in a new and a much better direction. We modeled everything that we did after other Southern conservative states, who have been successful, so we know we're on the right track."