AK DOC Today

News, Events, and Activities in the Alaska Department of Corrections

Department speaks to Evidence Based Sentencing at Judicial Conference

The Department of Corrections was privileged to be invited to participate in the 2012 Judicial Conference. Alaska Court of Appeals Judge Joel H. Bolger, responsible for the conference curriculum, invited the department to discuss Evidence Based Sentencing.

Commissioner Joe Schmidt offered opening comments, telling over 100 judges how important he views a collaborative relationship between the judiciary and DOC. Deputy Commissioner Carmen Gutierreez moderated a panel discussion led by Chief Probation Officers Keith Thayer, Rebecca Brunger and Martie Correa. Thayer and Correa provided an explanation of, and answered questions on, the Level of Service Inventory, Revised (LSI-R), how it’s used in the institutions and by field probation officers. Brunger provided the results of DOC’s examination of LSI-R data regarding risk levels of current probationers and the new direction for probationer supervision. DOC also offered suggestions regarding the practical applications of the LSI-R tool at sentencing and during PTRP (petition to revoke probation) disposition hearings.

Department Shares National Award for Housing Partnership

COSCDA Award

Thanks to active collaboration between Department of Corrections Adult Probation/Parole Officers and the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation, the State of Alaska Housing Finance Agency was awarded the 2012 COSCDA Sterling Achievement Award for Homelessness for its Tenant-Based Rental Assistance (TBRA) Program for Former Prisoners.

Parole/ Probation officers provide referrals to AHFC which processes the referral according to the program rules. Probation / Parole Officers act as a point of contact for the household, landlord and the AHFC Public Housing staffs. TBRA is offered throughout Alaska in eleven locations. Individuals that are on DOC probation or parole that will lease-up in the HOME/ Housing Choice Voucher service area are eligible to apply.

The AHFC Public Housing Division conducts the income eligibility determinations and conducts the briefing class for TBRA participants and their Probation/Parole Officers. Unit approval, inspections and renewals are conducted using the existing Housing Choice Voucher administrative infrastructure.

Offender file Conversion Project Underway in Juneau

File conversion

File conversion

Over the last year, staff of the Records Section at Juneau Central Office Administrative Services have started a process to convert the paper files of former DOC offenders into an electronic format. New computer software was designed and installed which allows paper documents to be scanned and then stored in ACOMS. Previously, an offender’s hard file had to be tracked down, boxed up, and shipped. In addition, storage capacity for paper files has been greatly expanded, which allows staff improved access to files in need of conversion.

“We’re excited about the direction we are heading regarding paper files. While we don’t have the capacity to store all the paper files located at all of our facilities, we hope to at least take some of the pressure off of facilities dealing with the burden of storing so many hard files,” said Section Chief Mike Matthews.

The Juneau Central Office has already begun to receive files from some DOC offices. In fact, the office received over 5,000 pounds of paper files for storage and eventual conversion on a single day in October.

“Our ultimate goal is to implement a schedule where each facility ships us a fixed number of hard files on a recurring basis. This will allow the facilities the ability to get some additional control over their file storage capacity while at the same time allow us to predict and prepare for all of the incoming files,” Matthews said.