I will be attending the Minnesota County Attorney Association Leadership Forum and Board of Directors meeting this week. Among the significant topics to be discussed, we will begin our discussion of legislative priorities for the 2019 Legislative Session.
A topic our statewide organization has been involved in for a couple years is Probation Reform. Our workgroup has been gathering data and meeting to look for ways to “standardize” probation across the state. For example, in Olmsted County, most offenders are placed on probation for the longest time authorized by law. In most cases, the offender is released early, usually having done less than half the original time. At the same time, in Hennepin County nearly every offender is placed on probation for no more than three years and serves the entire time.
At the end of the day the offenders serve about the same amount of time. But initially the terms are not the same. Our work will be to try to standardize the practices across the state so all offenders get the same terms and level of service no matter where they reside. People living in our communities are moving about the state, we need to treat everyone similarly to the best of our abilities.
MCAA Board of Directors is just one example of the larger role I play as your Olmsted County Attorney. Leading others for change across our region and state. #progressyouknow