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s_jud_2017a 01/04/2017 Committee Summary

Final

STAFF SUMMARY OF MEETING



COMMITTEE ON JOINT JUDICIARY

Date: 01/04/2017
ATTENDANCE
Time: 08:35 AM to 07:21 PM
Carver
Cooke
Place: LSB B
Court
Dore
This Meeting was called to order by
Foote
Representative Kagan
Lawrence
Lee
This Report was prepared by
Lundberg
Bo Pogue
Lundeen
Melton
Merrifield
Salazar
Willett
(None)
Kagan
X = Present, E = Excused, A = Absent, * = Present after roll call
Bills Addressed: Action Taken:
Judicial Branch Presentation Pursuant to the SMART Act and JR 25

OSPD SMART Act and Rule 25 Presentation

CCJJ SMART Act and Joint Rule 25 Presentation

Department of Public Safety SMART Act and JR 25 Presentation

Department of Corrections SMART Act and JR 25 Presentation

State Board of Parole Presentation Pursuant to 17-2-201 (3.5) C.R.S
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08:35 AM -- Judicial Branch Presentation Pursuant to the SMART Act and Joint Rule 25



The committee was called to order. Nancy Rice, Chief Justice of the Colorado Supreme Court, testified to the committee concerning the Judicial Department. Committee members received a presentation packet, prepared by Judicial Department Staff (Attachment A). Chief Justice Rice discussed the department's SHERLOCK self-help litigant assistance program, as well as efforts undertaken by the department, and the department's JBC requests.



17JointJud0104AttachA.pdf17JointJud0104AttachA.pdf



Chief Justice Rice responded to a question concerning the number of cases going to trial. She stated that the rate of criminal cases that go to trial is unchanged over recent years. She stated a concern that civil cases are not being tried, but instead are settled, mediated, or arbitrated. She stated that concerns over the cost of a full trial and possible appeals discourage taking cases to trial. In response to a question concerning judge diversity, Chief Justice Rice cited demographic figures for Colorado's bench.

















08:48 AM



Chief Justice Rice responded to questions regarding juvenile in-court shackling, and a recent Colorado Supreme Court ruling on tax deductions for oil and gas activities and its impact on the state budget.





09:03 AM



Chief Justice Rice responded to questions regarding judge training, and the performance of the Judicial Performance Commission. Discussion ensued regarding judicial performance.





09:18 AM



Chief Justice Rice responded to questions regarding potential best practices for problem-solving courts, and the applicability of the Colorado Open Records Act to the Judicial Branch.





09:34 AM



Chief Justice Rice responded to questions regarding oversight of magistrates. The following person testified regarding the Judicial Branch:



09:45 AM --
Ms. Dena McClung, representing herself, read her testimony to the committee, which concerned the Lifetime Supervision Act. Ms. McClung responded to questions regarding her recommended changes to the act.





09:56 AM -- OSPD SMART Act and Rule 25 Presentation



Mr. Doug Wilson, State Public Defender, and Ms. Carmen Spond, Senior Budget Analyst, appeared before the committee on behalf of the Office of the State Public Defender (OSPD) pursuant to the SMART Government Act and legislative Joint Rule 25. Committee members received a presentation packet, prepared by OSPD Staff (Attachment B). Mr. Wilson provided an overview of the office and its mission and duties, as well as the office's budget.



17JointJud0104AttachB.pdf17JointJud0104AttachB.pdf



10:06 AM



Mr. Wilson responded to questions regarding the OSPD's caseload, and recently adopted legislation that impacts it. Mr. Wilson responded to further questions regarding recently adopted legislation concerning mental health holds. Discussion returned to the OSPD's caseload. Mr. Wilson responded to questions regarding recently adopted legislation concerning the hiring of social workers by OSPD for juvenile cases, and potential cost savings as a result of the legislation.

















10:29 AM



Discussion returned to OSPD's caseload, particularly as impacted by certain court decisions, and the resulting budget ramifications. Discussion next returned to the provision of social workers to the OSPD. Discussion followed regarding parity between deputy district attorney and public defender salaries.





10:47 AM



Mr. Wilson responded to questions regarding the use of plea bargains to avoid trial, and certain inputs that affect this issue, such as mandatory minimum sentences and the complexity of Colorado's sentencing scheme.





11:05 AM -- CCJJ SMART Act and Joint Rule 25 Presentation



Mr. Stan Hilkey, Chair, and Mr. Doug Wilson, Vice Chair, Colorado Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice (CCJJ), appeared before the committee pursuant to the SMART Government Act and Joint Rule 25. Chairman Hilkey briefed the committee on the role and activities of the commission, including the make-up of the commission, and the commission's various subcommittees and task forces. Mr. Wilson provided input on the Mental Health/Jails Task Force, the Juvenile Continuity Task Force, the Data Sharing Task Force, and other CCJJ task forces and initiatives.





11:15 AM



Mr. Hilkey and Mr. Wilson continued their presentation, beginning with an explanation of various sentencing reforms. Mr. Wilson responded to a question concerning the complexity of sentencing statutes. Mr. Hilkey explained the adoption of evidence-based decision making practices. They also provided a summary of recent committee bills.





11:25 AM



Mr. Hilkey and Mr. Wilson explained current CCJJ legislative recommendations and upcoming CCJJ work. They responded to questions from the committee concerning CCJJ process, and task forces that were not discussed during the presentation.





11:37 AM



They continued to respond to committee questions about the work of the CCJJ, specifically how procedural changes may affect the recommendations that CCJJ may make on certain subjects. The following person testified regarding CCJJ:





11:41 AM --
Ms. Christie Donner, representing the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition, expressed certain frustrations with the way that CCJJ operates. Ms. Donner responded to questions regarding the potential for making statutory changes that might initiate activity by the commission.















11:48 AM -- Department of Public Safety SMART Act and Joint Rule 25 Presentation



The committee took a brief recess.





11:48 AM



The committee returned to order. Mr. Stan Hilkey, Executive Director, Department of Public Safety (DPS), provided opening remarks about the department, appearing before the committee pursuant to the SMART Government Act and legislative Joint Rule 25. Committee members received a packet of presentation materials, prepared by DPS Staff (Attachment C). Director Hilkey provided an overview of the department, its duties, and recent initiatives undertaken by the department. He also discussed the department's budget and legislative agenda. Director Hilkey responded to questions regarding the hiring of peace officers by the department who are not naturalized citizens. Col. Scott Hernandez, Chief, Colorado State Patrol (CSP), provided input on this issue.



17JointJud0104AttachC.pdf17JointJud0104AttachC.pdf



12:04 PM



Discussion ensued regarding employment of those who are not citizens by law enforcement, and potential legislation that might address the issue. Discussion followed regarding an item on the DPS legislative agenda that seeks to create peace officer status for the director of the Office of Prevention and Security.





12:11 PM



Col. Hernandez provided an overview of the CSP, its duties, and some recent initiatives undertaken by the force. Col. Hernandez responded to questions regarding a CSP policy initiative to enforce the use of car pool lanes on certain highways, and efforts to increase citations for not wearing seatbelts.





12:28 PM



Col. Hernandez responded to questions regarding certain areas where CSP enforces speed limits to a greater degree.





12:29 PM



The committee recessed.





01:30 PM



The committee returned to order. Mr. Michael Rankin, Director, Colorado Bureau of Investigation, provided an overview of the bureau and its mission and duties. Mr. Mike Morgan, Director, Division of Fire Prevention and Control, provided an overview of the division, its duties, and its activities.















01:58 PM



Mr. Kevin Klein, Director, Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, briefed the committee about the division and its activities. Director Klein responded to questions regarding communications coordination among public safety agencies. Ms. Jeanne Smith, Director, Division of Criminal Justice, briefed the committee on this division and its activities.





02:11 PM




Director Smith responded to questions regarding the availability of federal funds for a recently created body camera grant program. Director Smith responded to further questions regarding the division's responsibilities with regard to sex offender supervision, and the relationship between offender risk assessment and recidivism. Discussion ensued regarding trends in offender risk, and the use of specialty offender beds for offenders with mental health issues.





02:23 PM



Discussion continued regarding behavioral health issues in the criminal justice system, and the ability of agencies to collaborate on this topic. Director Smith responded to questions regarding disparities in treatment by the criminal justice system based upon ethnicity, and studies undertaken on this issue.





02:34 PM -- Department of Corrections SMART Act and Joint Rule 25 Presentation



Ms. Kellie Wasko, Deputy Executive Director, Department of Corrections (DOC), appeared before the committee pursuant to the SMART Government Act and Joint Rule 25. Committee members received a packet of presentation slides (Attachment D), the department's FY 2016-17 performance plan (Attachment E), and the department's FY 2015-16 annual performance evaluation (Attachment F). Ms. Wasko briefed the committee on the department's activities and duties based on the contents of Attachment D. Ms. Wasko responded to questions regarding the department's efforts to reduce recidivism based on technical parole violations. Ms. Melissa Roberts, DOC Director of Adult Parole, provided input on this issue.



17JointJud0104AttachD.pdf17JointJud0104AttachD.pdf 17JointJud0104AttachE.pdf17JointJud0104AttachE.pdf



17JointJud0104AttachF.pdf17JointJud0104AttachF.pdf



























02:49 PM



Discussion ensued regarding the circumstances facing offenders who are released from prison. Director Roberts provided input on this issue. Ms. Wasko returned to briefing the committee pursuant to the SMART Act, discussing DOC's budget, regulatory agenda, and legislative agenda. Ms. Wasko then provided an overview of the department's divisions and functions, and DOC's offender population. Ms. Wasko responded to questions regarding the offender population numbers as compared to last year, and certain offender categories.





03:01 PM



Ms. Wasko discussed the demographics of the offender population. Ms. Wasko responded to questions regarding programming available to offenders based on demographics. Ms. Wasko discussed how certain behavioral and health issues impact DOC's inmate population. Discussion ensued regarding a recent audit of DOC's behavioral health programs by the Office of the State Auditor (OSA), and issues associated with the department's information technology that impacts these programs.





03:17 PM



Discussion continued regarding the audit of DOC's behavioral health programs, and the department's plan for ensuring that the affected offender population receives appropriate treatment.





03:30 PM



Discussion continued regarding issues associated with DOC's behavioral health programs. The committee also discussed funding for certain DOC programs. The committee and Ms. Wasko discussed treatment for individuals convicted of sex offenses.





03:43 PM



Discussion continued regarding treatment for individuals convicted of sex offenses.





03:55 PM



Ms. Wasko continued her presentation, including a presentation regarding DOC's operations under interstate compacts. She also played a video concerning restorative justice, and discussion ensued on the topic. Ms. Wasko concluded her presentation by discussing restrictive housing reform.



04:02 PM --
Mr. Rick Thompkins, DOC Director of Human Resources, provided an overview of his division, including a discussion of system modernization and employee training and retention. He responded to a question concerning DOC employee retirement. Discussion continued on treatment for those who have committed sex offenses.



















04:15 PM --
Ms. Renae Jordan, DOC Director of Clinical and Correctional Services, provided an overview of her division, which are all customer-service oriented, providing services directly to prisoners. She responded to a question concerning recommendations made in an audit of DOC by the OSA. She also responded to questions concerning feminine hygiene products and other issues related to transition forms raised in the OSA audit.





04:25 PM



Ms. Jordan continued to respond to questions about treatment of mentally ill offenders and the mother baby unit.



04:28 PM --
Ms. Jennifer Bennett, DOC Director of Finance and Administration, provided an overview of her division and the included units. She responded to a question concerning the OSA audit findings and recommendations. Ms. Bennett continued her presentation. Representative Court commented.



04:35 PM --
Mr. Travis Trani, DOC Director of Prison Operations, provided an overview of the Division of Prisons. He discussed restrictive housing, highlighting differences with administrative segregation. He also discussed offender reintegration programs.





04:45 PM



Mr. Trani continued his presentation by discussing felony DUI offenders. He responded to a question regarding re-entry programs. He continued his presentation by discussing juvenile sentencing reform adopted by the General Assembly during the 2016 session. Discussion ensued concerning those sentencing reforms. Mr. Trani responded to a prior question concerning feminine hygiene products; discussion continued on the subject.





04:56 PM



Ms. Wasko commented on restrictive housing programs, highlighting an average reduction in time spent in restrictive housing compared to other states as well as Colorado's administrative segregation program. Discussion continued on this topic.



05:01 PM --
Ms. Melissa Roberts, DOC Director of Adult Parole, provided an overview of her division. She discussed re-entry processes, short term jail sanction programs, and evidence-based programs. She responded to questions about parole violations and the safe and sure program.





05:13 PM



Ms. Roberts continued her presentation by explaining data reporting methodologies. She responded to a question about data reporting. Ms. Roberts responded to questions concerning reviewing cases for parole eligibility, employee training and development, and responses to parole violations.





05:23 PM



Discussion continued concerning responses to parole violations.













05:34 PM



Discussion continued concerning responses to parole violations.





05:44 PM



Discussion continued concerning responses to parole violations. Ms. Wasko made closing remarks.




05:49 PM --
Greeley Police Department Chief Jerry Garner testified to the committee concerning parole. He discussed responses to parole violations. Representatives Kagan and Salazar commented on issues concerning parole violations.



06:02 PM --
Mr. J.D. Pyatt, representing himself, testified to the committee concerning parole. He stated issues that he has with how parole is presently operated. He also discussed detoxification as it relates to treatment, the sure and swift program, the parole absconsion rate, and parole revocation procedures, among other topics.





06:14 PM -- State Board of Parole Presentation Pursuant to Section 17-2-201 (3.5), C.R.S.



Mr. Joe Morales, Chairperson, State Board of Parole, made a presentation to the committee. The Parole Board (board) distributed a Clarification of Information Provided in the CLEAR Act Report (Attachment G) and the board's annual report (Attachment H). Mr. Morales introduced his staff and the members of the board. Mr. Morales was joined by Vice Chairperson Rebecca Oakes. Mr. Morales walked the committee through the annual report, discussing the constitution and functions of the board.



17JointJud0104AttachG.pdf17JointJud0104AttachG.pdf 17JointJud0104AttachH.pdf17JointJud0104AttachH.pdf



06:29 PM



Mr. Morales continued to brief the committee on the contents of Attachment H, discussing the hearing process. Mr. Morales responded to questions regarding how closely the board follows release guidelines, and the rate of release as compared to parole deferral.





06:44 PM



Mr. Morales returned to briefing the committee based upon Attachment H, picking up with early parole discharge hearings. Ms. Anne Andrews, Statistical Analyst for the board, responded to questions regarding revocation hearing statistics. Discussion ensued regarding these statistics.



























06:55 PM



Mr. Morales returned to briefing the committee based upon Attachment H, picking up with prison return rates. Mr. Morales made some closing remarks. Ms. Oakes reported on presumptive parole as guided by legislation.





07:07 PM



Ms. Denise Balazic, board member, invited committee members to attend a parole board hearing. Discussion ensued regarding efforts on the part of the board to ensure reintegration of minority offenders into society. Discussion followed regarding a particular case of early release from prison. The following person testified regarding the board:



07:16 PM --
Ms. Dena McClung, representing herself, raised some issues about certain statistics cited and assertions made by the board. Committee members received copies of Ms. McClung's testimony from earlier in the day (Attachment I).



17JointJud0104AttachI.pdf17JointJud0104AttachI.pdf



07:21 PM



The committee adjourned.