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The 192nd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 99F: Performance measurement system for the office of probation and private organizations under contract with the commonwealth

Section 99F. (a) The commissioner of probation shall establish a performance measurement system for the office of probation and any private organizations under contract with the commonwealth to perform services as part of a probationary sentence. The commissioner shall annually establish program goals, measure program performance against those goals and report publicly on the progress to improve the effectiveness of probation programs. The commissioner shall determine the appropriate measures and standards of performance in all categories and reporting on performance trends. Clear measurements shall be developed and effectuated while ensuring that no undue administrative burden is placed on agencies and organizations subject to this section. The performance measurement system shall require each division to develop a strategic plan for program activities and performance goals.

(b) Performance measurements shall include, but not be limited to, the recidivism and violation rate for probationers, probationers' compliance with court orders, the effectiveness of the probation departments' provision of information to the court and any other measurements established by the commissioner of probation.

(c) The commissioner shall annually re-evaluate the goals and measures established by the office and monitor the results that the divisions and contractors report. The office shall recommend changes to proposed goals and measures as are appropriate to enhance public safety.

(d) The commissioner shall use the performance measurements established under this section to determine the quality of service of all private entities. The results of such performance measures shall be criteria used in negotiating any contracts, and contracts with private organizations not meeting their performance goals shall be publicly bid upon their expiration. Renewal contracts may also provide incentives to reward reporting in compliance with performance measurements and to reward achievement of specific performance goals.

(e) The commissioner may consider applications for rehabilitative pilot programs that incorporate evidence based correctional practices. Said applications shall encourage partnerships with the state and can demonstrate an ability to leverage federal and/or private grant opportunities.

(f) The results of such performance measures shall be considered in conducting performance evaluations of staff.

(g) The commissioner shall report regularly to the public on the progress the office and its divisions are making at achieving stated goals. The report on performance measurements shall be published annually and made available to the public not later than December 31. The report shall also be filed annually with the clerks of the house of representatives and the senate, the chairs of the house and senate committees on ways and means, the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on public safety and homeland security and the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on the judiciary. The commissioner shall be responsible for reporting publicly and transparently and making all reports available.

(h) The commissioner shall, to the extent practicable, develop partnerships with research institutions to further analyze performance management data.