Wyoming Senate bill aims to reduce repeat offenses through skills training programs - Casper, WY Oil City News
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Wyoming Senate bill aims to reduce repeat offenses through skills training programs

Sen. Affie Ellis, R-Cheyenne, talks with Sen. Bo Biteman, R-Ranchester. (Dan Cepeda, Oil City)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. – The Wyoming Senate decided to move forward with a bill on Tuesday Feb. 18 focused on placing parolees or probationers in programs to teach them skills in order to keep them from re-offending.

The Senate passed the proposed legislation on second reading Tuesday.

SF 14 would allow the State Board of Parole, as a condition of someone’s parole, to require a parolee to participate in a program if they are assessed to be a high risk of re-offending or violating a parole condition. A person wouldn’t be placed in any type of program without being first assessed and evaluated.

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A modification or revocation of someone’s parole wouldn’t be required for an assessment, though. Sanctions would be imposed, if not outright revocation, for a parolee who isn’t compliant with the rules. Modification or revocation of parole is possible, though.

The original law also required parolees or probationers to participate in a program for at least 60 days, but that language is removed from the proposed bill.

The Senate voted on Tuesday to send the bill for a third reading, which will likely take place this week. If it passes a third reading, it will go to the House of Representatives for consideration.

The bill is sponsored by the Joint Judiciary Committee. It was introduced into the Senate on Feb. 11, where it was unanimously voted to be sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee. The committee also agreed to send the bill back to the Senate for a Committee of the Whole reading, which took place Monday, Feb. 17.

If signed into law by Gov. Mark Gordon, the bill would go into effect July 1, 2020.