Scope and Content Note

This series consists of newspaper clipping and subject files, public comment correspondence files, and public hearing testimony and transcripts compiled by the Committee on Sentencing Guidelines. Newspaper clipping and subject files contain material pertaining to numerous aspects of the judicial system, well beyond simply sentencing guidelines. The series contains copies of incoming correspondence from and committee replies to directors of criminal justice agencies, district attorneys, members of the judiciary, citizen advocacy groups, legal scholars, correctional facility inmates, and private citizens. Most of the correspondence pertains to issues at the center of the committee's work, particularly the amount of reduction in sentences earned for satisfactory institutional behavior and the imposition of determinate vs. indeterminate sentences for particular offenses.

The series contains a thick binder of prepared testimony submitted at public hearings held by the committee in Albany on February 7 and 8, 1985; Buffalo on February 12, 1985; and New York City on February 14, and 15, 1985. Testimony is arranged by date of hearing and then by presenting organization or individual. Presenters represent every facet of the criminal justice system and comment on all aspects of the committee's work and all recommendations put forward by the committee in relation to earned reduction in sentences, prison discipline, determinate sentencing, judicial discretion, and mandatory parole terms. Examples of presenters include the commissioner of the State Department of Correctional Services, the State Attorney General, justices of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, State Division of Parole, New York Civil Liberties Union, New York State Parole Officers Association, New York State Police, New York State Bar Association, Hofstra University Law School, Prisoners' Legal Services of New York, N.A.A.C.P. Commission on Prison Affairs, and the Parents of Murdered Children of New York State, Inc. The series also contains transcripts of each of the public hearings noted above.