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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: December 17, 2018 02:10 PM
From: Senator John P. Blake
To: All Senate members
Subject: District Attorneys opt-out of serving on prison boards
In the near future, I will reintroduce Senate Bill 468 of the 2017-18 session. This proposal would amend Title 61 (Prisons and Parole) to grant District Attorneys in 3rd, 4th and 5th class counties the option of serving on their respective county prison Board of Inspectors. Counties of the 6th, 7th, and 8th class currently have this option.

Under current law, District Attorneys in 3rd, 4th, and 5th class counties must serve on their county prison Board of Inspectors. There is a perceived conflict of interest as they must occasionally prosecute inmates, guards, or employees of said prison. As a result of this conflict, District Attorneys are potentially liable for any incidents that may occur at the prison. My legislation would allow counties to opt out of the requirement of District Attorney representation on the prison board, via resolution of the county commissioners.

Prior co-sponsors included Senators Brewster, Costa, Mensch, Greenleaf, Rafferty, Boscola, Ward and Hughes.

Introduced as SB562