United States District Court, N.D. Texas, Fort Worth Division
OPINION AND ORDER
O' Connor, United States District Judge.
the Court is a Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus under
U.S.C. § 2241 filed by Petitioner Rufino Munoz, a
federal prisoner housed at FMC-Fort Worth, in Fort Worth,
Texas. After considering the petition and relief sought by
Petitioner and the applicable law, the Court concludes that
the § 2241 petition must be dismissed.
BACKGROUND/CLAIM FOR RELIEF
Munoz informs that he is serving a term of 108 months'
imprisonment. Pet. 1, ECF No.1. A review of Pacer records
confirms that Rufino Villa Munoz was convicted of being a
convicted felon in possession of a firearm in violation of 18
U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) and sentenced to the term of
imprisonment noted above, in the United States District Court
for the Western District of Texas, Midland Division. J.,
United States v. Munoz, No.7:12-cr-072-01 (W.D. Tex.
July 20, 2012), ECF No. 38. At this time, the Bureau of
Prisons (“BOP”) shows Munoz's projected
release date as December 30, 2019. See www.bop.gov/inmate
locator (last visited April 23, 2019).
petition, Munoz alleges that he is eligible for a
recalculation of the award of good time credits as a result
of the First Step Act of 2018. Pet. 1, ECF No. 1. He requests
that be provided 54 days of good time credit for each year of
his sentence rather than 47 days. Id. Munoz seeks
for this “Court to order the BOP to credit the extra 7
days the law requires . . . .” Pet 2, ECF No. 1.
102(b)(1) of the First Step Act of 2018, Public Law No.
115-391, amended 18 U.S.C. § 3624(b) to permit federal
inmates to earn 54 days of good conduct time for each year of
the prisoner's sentence imposed by the court, rather than
for each year of the sentence served, effectively abrogating
Barber v. Thomas, 560 U.S. 474, 476 (2010)
(upholding the BOP's method of awarding good time credit
at the end of each year the prisoner served). See
Public Law 115-391, 132 Stat. 5194, § 102(b)(1). But the
good time calculation provisions of the FSA 2018 amending
§ 3624(b) did not become effective when the law was
signed on December 21, 2018. See Banegas v. Wilson,
No. 4:19-CV-178-A (N.D. Tex. Mar. 26, 2019); Roy v.
Bureau of Prisons, No. 2:19-CV-59-RMP, 2019 WL 1441622,
at *1 (E.D. Wash. April 1, 2019). Rather, the
good-time-credit change will not take effect until the
attorney general completes the “risk and needs
assessment system” required to be completed within 210
days after the December 21, 2018 enactment, as provided by
§§ 101(a) and 102(b)(2) of the FSA 2018. See
Schmutzler v. Quintana, No.5:19-046-DCR, 2019 WL 727794,
at *2 (E.D. Ky. Feb. 20, 2019). Therefore, § 102(b)(1)
will not take effect until approximately mid-July 2019.
Id.; Banegas, No. 4:19-CV-178-A (doc. 7.)
courts are limited under Article III of the Constitution to
deciding “cases” and “controversies.”
U.S. Const. art. III, § 2. “In order to give
meaning to Article III's case-or-controversy requirement,
the courts have developed justiciability doctrines, such as
the standing and ripeness doctrines.” Sample v.
Morrison, 406 F.3d 310, 312 (5th Cir. 2005) (citing
United Transp. Union v. Foster, 205 F.3d 851, 857
(5th Cir. 2000) and Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife,
504 U.S. 555, 650 (1992)). The ripeness doctrine is designed
“to prevent the courts, through avoidance of premature
adjudication, from entangling themselves in abstract
disagreements over administrative policies, and also to
protect the agencies from judicial interference until an
administrative decision has been formalized and its effects
felt in a concrete way by the challenging parties.”
Id. (quoting Nat'l Park Hosp. Ass'n v.
Dep't of Interior, 538 U.S. 803, 807-08
(2003)(internal citations omitted).
the BOP does not presently have the authority to recalculate
Munoz's good time credit until the relevant provisions of
the FSA 2018 take effect in approximately mid-July 2019, the
question of whether the BOP has erred in the calculation of
Munoz's sentence is premature. Accord Banegas,
No. 4:19-CV-178-A (dismissing § 2241 petition seeking
recalculation of good time credits as premature); Gossman
v. Underwood, No.3:19-CV-351-G (BK) (N.D. Tex. April 1,
2019) (adopting findings, conclusions, and recommendation to
dismiss § 2241 petition seeking recalculation of good
time without prejudice as premature); Roy, 2019 WL
1441622 at *2 (discussing “ripeness” doctrine and
finding that § 2241 petition challenging good time under
the FSA was premature). Accordingly, Munoz's petition
under § 2241 must be dismissed without prejudice.
reasons discussed herein, Petitioner Rufino Munoz's
petition for relief under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 is
DISMISSED without prejudice.