April 28, 2011 Communications Sub-Committee Meeting Agenda


General Public


Thursday, April 28, 2011
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm


55 East Monroe 
30th Floor
Chicago, IL  60603


  1. Call to Order
  2. Roll Call
  3. Approval of minutes
  4. Review of Mandated Reports
    1. SB1725 Parole Study
      1. Finalize Report
    2. Raise the Age 
      1. Status 
      2. Next Steps
  5. Communications strategies
    1. Legislative Updates
      1. Pending Legislation (Juvenile Sex Offenders/Automatic Gun Transfer)
    2. DHS Transition Status
  6. Other Items / Next Steps
  7. Next meeting date
  8. Adjournment


  1. Call to Order
    The meeting was called to order at 2:43pm due to the JCEC meeting.
  2. Roll Call
    Commissioners: Co-Chairman Esther Franco-Payne, Julie Biehl, Lisa Jacobs. Quorum present.
    Staff: Karrie Rueter and Julie Stremlau
    Guests: Heather Renwick, Molly Haunty, Stephanie Kollman.
  3. Approval of minutes
    Commissioner Biehl motioned to approve March 31, 2011 minutes. Commissioner Jacobs seconded the motion. All in favor, minutes approved.
  4. Review of mandated reports: Status updates
    1. SB1725 Parole Study (Reentry and Aftercare Improvement Initiative) 
      Commissioner Biehl reported that the Reentry and After Care Improvement Initiative report will be ready by May 19th. Stephanie Kollman, Molly Haunty, Commissioner Jacobs and Commissioner Biehl will make final edits to this report. They will present the four components to Phil Lee. It is difficult to use RBA in conjunction with this project. Commissioner Biehl and IJJC Chairman Timberlake met with Adam Monreal,Chairman of the Prison Review Board, to discuss the parole board no longer having a role in reentry for DJJ. Once the recommendation is approved we will give him access to the report prior to public distribution.
      This report has to bring together all the components reviewed. Commissioner Biehl, Jacobs, Franco-Payne and Heather Renwick met with DJJ to discuss the response diagram of their data system. Ron Smith, Deputy Director of operations for DJJ, provided all of the information on how their current data system works. In addition, Commissioner Ander and staff from CCPRD and Chapin Hall were in attendance. CPRD and Heather Renwick will meet in the next two weeks with recommendations to get them to help with recommendations regarding tracking. Director Bishop and DCFS Director Erwin McEwen were 100% for it. Director McEwen warned that the PRB and he have big differences but he can override the PRB decisions. We were really not seeing the revocation but those that need reviews. Commissioner Biehl believes there should be shared services for transfer. Commisioner Franco-Payne asked if the Prison Review Board will support us and could we make our own board and require PRB training. Commissioner Jacobs suggested writing it in as a recommendation. 
      Commissioner Biehl explained that Molly Haunty has been representing kids at revocation hearings for three months. She will complete a three month report and the information is fascinating and almost done. This information will be included in the final report. Director Bishop wants collaboration between IJJC and DJJ and wants the focus on revocation. The girls at Warrenville want representation. Warrenville has been clear they don't want Molly there. Commissioner Biehl commented that it would be great if we could have lawyers available for representation at every facility. Commissioner Franco-Payne asked about inclusion of youth stories. Commissioner Biehl explained that the problem with including them in the IJJC report is that these are the kids stories. We cannot verify the stories without reviewing actual files and checking the stories before representing them. Also most of the stories from youth were not shared with Commissioners during their reviews. Commissioner Jacobs stated that there is a power in these stories but we need to be careful about how we convey this information. We need to be careful to not appear as if we had preconceived ideas. 
      Commissioner Jacobs stated that coming from a Communications perspective we need to start with clear performance measures. Graphically go from incarceration. What are the reasons, what are the codes and how are we going to change the codes. We need to write this report the way we want it. We will use the RBA concept to guide the report. It was noted that it is difficult to write this report in RBA language and structure. This report is incredibly in depth. 
      Commissioner Franco-Payne would like to use the recommendations for the executive summary and it needs to be comprehensive. This will give legislators and budget people clear messages they will remember. 
      Commissioner Biehl added that the report is methodology and it is technical.  There are many items we need in this report. We could use the RBA structure and lay out what we want to say from a one-pager or executive summary. Then, in six months we should be able to say this is what we wanted.  Commissioner Biehl listed the recommendations according to acts.  Commissioner Biehl believes we can present this both ways. Commissioner Franco-Payne does not want to confuse the message. 
    2. Raise the Age 
      Commissioner Jacobs asked how the Commission separates its position. There will be some opposed based on their understanding about youth and development and others would say I am not opposed to this in theory. Commissioner Franco-Payne would like to know how law enforcement is addressing this issue. She stated that Region 1 makes an attempt to determine if the youth need to go to court. They have a partnership with law enforcement but are they one voice. There is written literature from the Juvenile Justice Initiative (JJI). Commissioner Franco-Payne stated that law enforcement is a missing piece and should be addressed. The quanitative questions were presented to Chairman Monreal, but they appeared negative so they were removed. Getting the data is the most important aspect of this issue. Karrie Rueter added that the opposition consistently voiced is how this will affect the kids and the increased number of kids there will be to deal with if this were to pass. The estimated numbers and the real numbers are very different. We should be able to get the real number of charged 17 year olds from the counties. 
      JJI and other advocates perceived numbers that were very far from what the numbers would actually be when in fact the age is raised. Commissioner Biehl stated that real numbers and real analysis are too hard for us to do now. Legislators indicated to go away and come back with the real figure. There is not sufficient time to do a quality no cost benefit analysis. Commissioner Jacobs asked if we might be able to use existing data to get existing numbers.
      There are paper files, jail sentences, convictions, DOC documents and what is possible from the State Police. Is it possible to get disaggregate numbers from the State Police? We will ask ICJIA about data and further analysis. Karrie will meet with Mark Myrent of ICJIA next week and they will discuss the data points the Commission feels are necessary to move forward with their response on the Raise the Age issue.
  5. Communications strategies
    1. Legislative Updates: Commissioner Franco-Payne stated that Loyola University is assisting the Communications Committee with legislation. Commissioner Biehl indicated she is not sure of the status of the Sex Offender bill. There is significant opposition. The bill is overly broad so it was sent back to the Senate. Currently there is nothing formal or on paper. Commissioner Franco-Payne recommends to the IJJC Chair that appropriations are necessary for this committee to be able to address legislative issues, studies, reports,etc. The Commission is happy to respond to these requests but the Commission is not a research body and to complete such tasks without appropriations is not reasonable. Commissioner Biehl motioned to recommend the allocation of resources to support the ongoing research and data analysis the commission receives. Our first choice is the Center for Crime Prevention and Research Development (CRPD) if they are willing. Motion to approve up to $120,000.
      Commissioner Franco-Payne seconded the motion. Please add this topic to the full Commission agenda. All in favor, motion passed. Commissioner Jacobs will follow up with CPRD.
    2. DHS Transition Status: Karrie Rueter gave a brief update of the appropriation hearings. DHS continues to work on reorganizing the continuum of youth services and how it is integrated into this system. There is reference to possibly renaming Community Health and Prevention (CHP). It seems the Governor is taking the recommendations of the Illinois Human Services Commission (IHSC) recommendations very seriously. The (IHSC) addressed the movement of youth programs out of CHP and does it make sense for programs to stay together. The IJJC Commissioners believe they should weigh in on this topic. The Communications Committee will request a copy of the IHSC report and issue a response. There was some discussion about the realignment of DJJ facilities. They are looking to cut but there continues to be issues with the Union, the Governors MOU and legislative push back. Again, the Commission feels it should voice its concerns but the Commission needs more information to respond.
  6. Other Items / Next Steps
    Karrie Rueter explained to the group that the letter of support for the Franklin County Meth Program is official. Commission Biehl wanted it noted that the Wells Center does not use evidence based drug treatment programs.
    The Commission received a questionnaire concerning federal grant reductions and will respond with a paragraph describing Illinois' current concerns.
    The 2009-2010 Annual report was reviewed and finalized for submission. It will be printed and distributed. The report will also be available on the DHS website. Hard copies will be sent to Commissioners, Redeploy Oversight Board, etc. Commissioner Franco-Payne indicated that it is time to discuss the next report and that we should begin working on this very soon. Commissioner Jacobs thanked Commissioner Franco-Payne and everyone who assisted in completing this report.
  7. Next meeting date
    Thursday, May 26th.
  8. Adjournment
    Commissioner Jacobs moved to adjourn, Commissioner Biehl seconded the motion. Meeting adjourned by at 4:36pm.