Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

National Sentencing Commissions to Meet in OKC

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

National Sentencing Commissions to Meet in OKC

Article excerpt

The National Association of Sentencing Commissions will meet at the Skirvin Hilton Hotel in Oklahoma City from Aug. 5-7.

Oklahoma's Sentencing Commission is one of 21 state commissions that study criminal justice policy and advise policymakers on how to best use prison resources.

"This is a great chance for Oklahomans to see how it is that other states deal with a problem that just never seems to go away," said state Sen. Richard Lerblance, D-Hartshorne, who chairs Oklahoma's commission. "We've got more prisoners than most legislators want to pay to house and feed."

Lerblance said that Oklahoma's prison population has increased from 8,700 in 1987 to more than 25,000.

State Rep. Sue Tibbs, R-Tulsa, who chairs the House Criminal Justice Subcommittee, said she plans to attend, to see how other states use their prison systems to maximum benefit.

"We all share a common goal," she said. "We want criminals to top breaking the law and we want drug addicts to go straight. I want to know if building more prisons is the best solution to the problem. …

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