After the Democratic co-chairmen of the legislature’s Judiciary Committee declined to hold an informational hearing on the inmate early release program, Republican legislative leaders sent a letter to Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s administration Tuesday asking members of the administration to attend a similar hearing.
“It is our strong belief that the many questions and concerns surrounding this program must be further explored, and in the interest of public safety, we must not wait until the regular session next year to find answers and solutions to the problems that seem to be plaguing the risk reduction program,” Sen. John Kissel and Rep. John Hetherington, wrote Tuesday in a letter to their fellow Judiciary Committee members.
Republican lawmakers became increasingly vocal about the earned risk reduction program after the murder of a Meriden convenient store clerk. But last week Sen. Eric Coleman, D-Hartford, and Rep. Gerald Fox, D-Stamford, said many of the questions being asked were answered back in February.
Michael Lawlor, Malloy’s chief criminal justice adviser, said he, Department of Correction Commissioner Leo Arnone, and Board of Pardons and Parole Chair Erika Tindall will not be attending the Sept. 18 meeting requested by Republican lawmakers.
“Clearly, that’s a partisan undertaking and I don’t think it’s appropriate for us to participate in that,” Lawlor said Tuesday.
However, Lawlor has agreed to meet individually with lawmakers to go over some of the misinformation they’ve received.
Also the Criminal Justice Policy and Planning Division will be holding a public hearing in September to update its members on how the early release program is progressing. That meeting will be open to the public and lawmakers and is traditionally broadcast on Connecticut Networks.