Kelli Wasko, Deputy Director, Deb Goheen, Interim Director of Budget and Finance, and Travis Trani, Director of Prisons, for the DOC, appeared before the committee in accordance with the SMART Act and Joint Rule 25. The following documents were distributed to the committee: Joint Judiciary Committee SMART Act hearing Powerpoint presentation (Attachment F); the Regulatory Agenda Report, 2019 (Attachment G); and, the DOC Performance Plan, 2018-19 (Attachment H).
Ms. Wasko walked the committee through the Powerpoint presentation. The presentation included the agency's vision and mission statement, as well as highlighted accomplishments such as the end of long-term solitary confinement, reduction in Hep C cases, issuance of IDs upon release, and improvements in parolee employment. The presentation also covered recidivism and technical parole violations. Ms. Wasko reported that the prison population has remained relatively stable compared to the state population.
The committee discussed the prison population rate, the under-utilization of community corrections beds, and the placement of transgender inmates. The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) was also discussed, as well as forensic investigations for reported rapes.
Ms. Wasko continued with the presentation and discussed the various kinds of treatment offered in prison. The committee asked questions about diagnosis and assessments, capacity, wait lists, and access to services.
Mr. Trani discussed progress on implementing legislation regarding prison population management, community corrections transition placements, and DOC policies for transgender inmates.