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Oregon Sentencing Reform Plans June 30, 2010

Posted by FairSentencing in : Current News , trackback

“The time is now to find more effective and sustainable ways to use the hundreds of millions of dollars we spend on incarceration,” Gov. Ted Kulongoski said Friday as he called for modifying Measure 11, Oregon’s strict voter-approved sentencing law for violent offenders.

“This does not mean that we stop holding criminals accountable, or shorten sentences of violent offenders. I won’t tolerate that, and neither will the citizens of Oregon. But there are actions we can take to reduce some sentences for some offenders without sacrificing public safety, and ways to divert offenders from prison. These options must be explored.”

He also called for a continuing freeze on Measure 57, a voter-approved ballot measure that imposed tougher sentences on repeat property offenders.

To rein in prison spending, Kulongoski and his Reset Cabinet recommend:

-Selectively adjusting Measure 11 sentences “to provide sufficient protection for the public, but lower the overall impact on prison beds.”

-Creating “a modern system of uniform, transparent and proportional sentencing guideline practices that optimizes use of the most expensive resource — prison.”

-Placing an indefinite freeze on prison construction and opening of new prison beds.

-Adopting the federal prison system’s policy of granting 15 percent earned-time sentence reductions for inmates. As proposed, all prison inmates except those serving life sentences would be eligible for these sentence reductions.

-Giving the Department of Corrections temporary authority to allow some offenders to serve the final year of their sentence in home detention.




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