Hope all of you are doing well. Last month I reported out about the last L&J committee meeting and put out a list of bills that past through committee. A lot of you have requested the bills and I am in the process of printing and sending them to you. If you requested to see the bills please be patient and you will receive yours soon. The committee sent 12 proposals to the 2015 Legislature for its consideration. They made five changes to the structure and operation of the MT Board of Pardons and Parole. The recommendations include:
- Making the board comply with more of the laws that govern how executive agencies adopt and revise administrative rules;
- Requiring board meetings and parole hearings to be video-recorded;
- Clarifying that the governor may change the presiding officer of the board without removing that person from the board;
- Moving parole criteria from the administrative rule to statute; and
- Allowing the governor to weigh in on executive clemency decisions even when the board doesn’t recommend that clemency be granted.
The committee also adopted three other bills related to non-study work on re-entry from prison to a community and to its oversight of the D.O.C. They also recommended a study be done in the next interim of Shelby. We will support that and try to add in all regionals. A letter was sent to the Legislative Audit Committee asking to conduct a performance audit of the D.O.C. and its contract with Shelby. We will stay on top of all of these issues during the session that will start in Jan. 2015 and keep you posted as to how they are moving along.
The Native American survey is still having trouble getting through and I am not sure what the problem is but I will continue to try to get them to the people that need to get them. I would ask that you send the completed ones back to me so that I can collect them and give them to the Indian Peoples Action group. I was told they weren’t getting any survey’s back either and so maybe if they are sent to us we can get this going. If you would like a survey let me know. I will be sending you two surveys and two consent forms. The white survey is for the prisoner and the blue one goes to a family member of your choice. Your family can mail theirs to the Butte address, you send yours back to me and we will make a note in our records and put you on the list to receive our updates and newsletters FREE.
As usual we are accepting apps for the Advisory Board in all facilities let me know if your interested and I will send you the app. We can use your help. In closing we wish all of you many blessings and thank you for your help and support in helping us help all of you.
Connections Box 4142 Bozeman MT. 59772