Authorizes any employee of the department of corrections and community supervision to visit correctional institutions as requested by member of the legislature if the member requests to be so accompanied.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the correction law, in relation to persons authorized to visit correctional facilities
PURPOSE: To authorize members of the New York State Legislature to be accompanied by an employee of their choosing when visiting a New York State correctional facility.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill amends subdivision 1 of § 146 of the Correction Law to authorize a Member of the Legislature to be accompanied by an employee of the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision when visiting a State correctional facility, if such Member of the Legislature so desires to be accompanied. Section 2 of the bill provides for an immediate effective date.
EXISTING LAW: Under current law, although Members of the Legislature are authorized to visit correctional facilities at their pleasure, they are not statutorily authorized to be accompanied by an employee of the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision when visiting such facilities.
JUSTIFICATION: Members of the New York State Legislature are statutorily authorized to visit State correctional facilities at their pleasure pursuant to the provisions of § 146 of the Correction Law. However, they are not authorized to be accompanied by an employee of their choosing during such visit. As a result, these legislators are often given their tours with facility administrators who may have a different perspective on the operation compared to, for example, a rank and file correctional officer. By allowing a Member of the Legislature to designate an employee of the Department to accompany them on their respective visit, this proposal would ensure that our elected officials receive a broader perspective on the operation of a particular correctional facility. Moreover, this legislation specifically prohibits the designation of an employee to accompany a Member of the Legislature on such facility tour if such designation would compromise the Department's ability to supervise, manage and control its facilities.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: Similar to S.331/A.4333 of 2007.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 4929 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 1, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. NOZZOLIO -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Crime Victims, Crime and Correction AN ACT to amend the correction law, in relation to persons authorized to visit correctional facilities THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Subdivision 1 of section 146 of the correction law, as amended by chapter 291 of the laws of 2009, is amended to read as follows: 1. The following persons shall be authorized to visit at pleasure all correctional facilities: The governor and lieutenant-governor, commis- sioner of general services, secretary of state, comptroller and attor- ney-general, members of the commission of correction, members of the legislature AND ANY EMPLOYEE OF THE DEPARTMENT AS REQUESTED BY THE MEMBER OF THE LEGISLATURE IF THE MEMBER REQUESTS TO BE SO ACCOMPANIED, PROVIDED THAT SUCH REQUEST DOES NOT IMPACT UPON THE DEPARTMENT'S ABILITY TO SUPERVISE, MANAGE AND CONTROL ITS FACILITIES AS DETERMINED BY THE COMMISSIONER, judges of the court of appeals, supreme court and county judges, district attorneys and every clergyman or minister, as such terms are defined in section two of the religious corporations law, having charge of a congregation in the county wherein any such facility is situated. No other person not otherwise authorized by law shall be permitted to enter a correctional facility except by authority of the commissioner of correction under such regulations as the commissioner shall prescribe. The provisions of this section shall not apply to such portion of a correctional facility in which inmates under sentence of death are confined. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD10716-01-3