Parole: Pardon and Policy-making Functions

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-Parole is the release of an inmate into the community prior to the completion of sentence, subject to the orders of the Board of Pardons and Parole and the supervision of the Department of Corrections. The Parole Board is an independent agency and exercises its quasi-judicial and policy-making functions without the approval or control of the Department of Corrections. The Board acts somewhat like a Judge when making parole decisions and generally does so without review. The primary concern of the Board is the protection of the public. It is also important to note the Board members are not state employees, but are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Senate. They do not receive a salary but are reimbursed for expenses. -The purpose of parole is wide-ranging. Most offenders, even those serving life sentences, will have a lawful date for parole eligibility. There must be a way to reintegrate those offenders back into society. Parole is a proven method for the re-entry of incarcerated offenders into society. The need to earn parole motivates offenders to address problems that contributed to their criminal behavior. Parole is the public's last line of defense against the early release of unsuitable serious offenders. It simply makes good sense to screen serious offenders before their return to the community. The Parole Board takes into account a multitude of factors when each inmate is considered in an effort to assess and manage risk. -The mission of the correctional policy of the State of Montana is to: a) punish each offender commensurate with the nature and degree of harm caused by the offender; b) protect the public by incarcerating violent offenders and serious repeat offenders; c) provide restitution, reparation, and restoration to the victim's) of the offense; and d) encourage and provide opportunities for the offender’s self-improvement. -The Board is also responsible for Executive Clemency for the State of Montana. This includes both pardon...
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