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4F03C6A9ECFD526A872583920075E2EC Hearing Summary


Date Jan 30, 2019      
Location SCR 352

SB19-036 - Lay Over

02:28:00 PM  

Senators Lee and Cooke, co-prime sponsors, explained SB19-036, concerning requiring the state court administrator to administer a program to remind criminal defendants to appear in court as scheduled.  Senator Cooke discussed jail overcrowding and failure to appear (FTA) warrants.  He discussed how the bill would set up a court date reminder program in the office of the State Court Administrator in an effort to decrease FTA warrants and increase court efficiences.  Senator Lee noted that court reminder programs in other jurisdictions have proven success rates and that the bill is a collaborative effort between the Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice (CCJJ) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).  Senator Cooke reported that the bail bond industry was in support of the measure as well. 

02:44:17 PM  

Chris Johnson, representing the County Sheriffs of Colorado, spoke in favor of the bill.  He explained that many metro counties already have court reminder programs in place that have proven to free-up jail bed space for those who need it. 

02:47:03 PM  

Chris Ryan, State Court Administrator in the Judicial Department, spoke in support of the bill.  He explained that increased court attendance results in court efficiencies.  He answered questions from the committee about a broader application of the reminder program, such as for probation and municipal courts, as well as contacting defendants if there is a weather delay. 

02:52:04 PM  

Julie Reskin, representing the Colorado Cross Disability Coalition, spoke in favor of the bill.  She explained that some people with disabilities have impaired memories.

Fran Maes, representing the Colorado Cross Disability Coalition, testified in support of the bill.  She noted that some people with disabilities cannot keep dates and times straight and are not intentionally missing court dates. 

02:57:10 PM  

Maureen Cain, representing the Office of the State Public Defender, spoke in favor of the bill.  She recommended an amendment regarding consent to solely use defendant contact information for program purposes only.  She also recommended an amendment clarifying that if a court date is missed, the text may not state that a warrant is out for arrest.  Instead, the text should read to contact a lawyer. 

Tim Lane, representing the Colorado District Attorneys' Council, spoke in favor of the bill.  He agreed to work with Ms. Cain on the proposed amendments. 

03:03:45 PM  

Denise Maes, representing the ACLU, spoke in support of the bill.  She discussed the benefits of the bill and agreed with the amendments suggested by Ms. Cain. 

03:06:59 PM  

Allison Daley, representing Colorado Counties Inc, testified in support of the bill. She discussed over-crowded jails in counties.

Tristan Gorman, representing the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar, spoke in favor of the bill and the proposed amendments.  She explained that the bill would cut down on unintentional FTAs.

03:11:21 PM  

Senator Lee requested that the bill be laid over to work on amendments.   The Chair laid the bill over until a later date. 

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