Pay for Success Initiative: Outcomes-based Contracting to Lower Recidivism

Second Chance Act

The Second Chance Act (SCA) Pay for Success Initiative: Outcomes-based Contracting (OBC) to Lower Recidivism provides assistance and funding to state, local, and tribal governments to price, write, negotiate, fund, and manage contracts that pay for these services in a way that ensures accountability of the contract service providers, and incentivizes improved performance over time. Contracted services that may be purchased with grant funds include reentry services which are tailored to individuals leaving incarceration who are at moderate to high risk for recidivism in the community and services available to individuals living in permanent supportive housing units.

Objectives and Deliverables


  • Enter into an outcomes-based contract to provide individualized (as documented in a case management plan informed by a validated needs assessment) reentry services for people leaving incarceration who are identified through a validated risk tool as being at moderate to high risk to reoffend in the community.
  • Manage the outcomes-based reentry service contract, including data and report collection, regular performance and outcome reviews between the governments and service provider, on and off-site monitoring, outcomes validation, and incentive payment approvals.
  • Ensure government staff and service providers have adequate training on SCA OBC procurement, reentry service/intervention, data collection, and outcomes validation.


  • Analysis that demonstrates reentry service needs, based on evidence, and data indicating the number and needs of people to be served. Describe the mechanisms to ensure the intended size and target population are identified and provided with contracted services.
  • Analysis that demonstrates the outcomes selected for payment. Contracts must include recidivism outcomes that can include rearrests, reconviction, reincarceration, revocation and can also include time between offenses and reduction in severity of offense.
  • Analysis that demonstrates the grantee’s decision about the outcomes-based contract structure, repayment strategy, and timing of payments.

See link to 2019 solicitation at:

See link to awards at: