General Laws

Section 21. There shall be a special commission established to investigate and study improving information and resource sharing among the office of probation, department of criminal justice information services, parole board, department of corrections, and all sheriffs in the commonwealth. The commission shall consist of the secretary of public safety and security or the secretary's designee, who shall serve as chair; the commissioner of probation or the commissioner's designee; commissioner of department of criminal justice information services or the commissioner's designee; the chair of the parole board or the chair's designee; the commissioner of correction or the commissioner's designee; the commissioner of youth services, or the commissioner's designee; and the president of the Massachusetts Sheriffs Association or the president's designee.

The investigation shall include, but not be limited to:

(a) identifying and eliminating redundant and duplicative practices, while promoting public safety and cost-effectiveness;

(b) developing a common risk and needs assessment tool for supervised individuals, to be used by the office of probation, trial court office of community supervision, parole board, department of corrections and sheriffs;

(c) developing policies and protocols for individuals who have been sentenced to supervision under more than one of the agencies or departments concurrently to ensure that said supervision is meted in an orderly and effective manner for those individuals who are subject to dual supervision;

(d) establishing procedures for the sharing of information on supervised individuals, including procedure for addressing any privacy issues raised by the sharing of information between agencies; provided, however, that if the commission discovers legal impediments to sharing information between the organizations it shall draft and report legislative recommendations to address such impediments;

(e) investigating the creation of a common office of performance management to track the effectiveness and outcomes of programs used by the office of probation, trial court office of community supervision, parole board, department of corrections and sheriffs; and

(f) investigating the effectiveness of the office of community corrections, potential improvements to its function and organization, including the feasibility and advisability of relocating it to the executive office of public safety and security.

The commission shall annually report on its activities and on any findings and recommendations to the chairs of the joint committee on the judiciary, the chairs of the joint committee on public safety and homeland security and chairs of the senate and house committees on ways and means not later than December 31.