December 2010 Update

Merry Christmas Everybody,

Hope all of you are doing what you can to have a positive attitude and are feeling festive in remembering the true meaning of the season. We are blessed as a nation as well as individuals.

As you know we had sent out an ALERT concerning the New Rules proposed by the Board of Pardons and Parole. A lot of people responded with letters and emails stating their concerns especially with Rule # IV and the 3, 5, and 8 year flops. After some conference calls with other organizations concerned with the New Rules we determined that these New Rules were basically just business as usual and the Board was trying to change verbiage to match the statutes that are already in place. What was more disturbing and a red flag was that the Board has the power to make any changes they want and not have to answer to anybody. Under the Montana Administrative Procedure Act the Board is exempt from informing the public and getting public comment when they want to change something. The New Rules will be in effect this week as written.

“Business as usual” is not a good thing and only alerts us that we need to stay on top of these things. The ACLU and Human Rights Network have drafted a bill expressing their concerns with the fact that the Board has way to much power. Connections pledged to help with the bill and get our network involved when the time comes. That may mean we need to go to the legislature and give testimony with our concerns and advocate for Parole Board Reform. Another concern that is brought up in the draft is the fact that the Board wants to take away Native American representation on the Board and replace it with Native American cultural sensitivity training for all Board members. We will keep you posted and send out ALERTS as needed.

Thank all of you for another great year and for all the cards that are coming into the office. We appreciate your prayers, love and support. Have a great Holiday season and many blessings to you.

Casey

Connections | 1117 N 7th Ave #3 | Bozeman, MT 59715

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