Yesterday, at the Governor and Council meeting, Governor Lynch chose to replace (to the Adult Parole Board) two outspoken critics of the severely flawed SB500 law, which allowed for the mandatory early release of violent and sexual offenders.
Last year, the controversial SB500 law came under fire when it was revealed that sexual and violent offenders were being mandatorily released into the community nine months prior to their maximum sentence. Even though Governor Lynch insisted at the time that the law was not releasing these offenders early, members of the Adult Parole Board, including Gregory Crompton and Alan Coburn, disagreed with the Governor’s assessment, were publically critical of the flawed law, and asked for more discretion over the early release of these offenders.
Subsequently, this year the House and Senate passed SB52, which made critical changes to the SB500 law in that it gave the Adult Parole Board the discretion they requested over the early release of sexual and violent offenders, as well as greater discretion over the parole violators.
Even though Governor Lynch signed SB52 into law, thereby admitting that SB500 was flawed and needed changes, he chose to replace the two most outspoken critics of the early release law at yesterday’s Governor and Council meeting.
Commenting on Lynch’s decision to play politics with the Adult Parole Board was Cornerstone Executive Director, Kevin Smith:
“Rather than just admitting that he was on the wrong side of the early release law to begin with, John Lynch chose to play petty politics with the Parole Board by replacing its two most vocal critics – even though he signed into law the very changes those two members were asking for. Rather than commending his Board members for pointing out a severe flaw in the original law, the Governor chose to punish them instead for their public dissent. Once again, this is just another example of John Lynch’s failed leadership and incompetent management of those who work for him.”
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