Call to Order
Chairman George Timberlake welcomed the group at 9:42 AM and requested introductions. Following introductions, the meeting was called to order at 10:07 AM, quorum declared present.
Commissioners Present: Roseanna Ander, Esther Franco-Payne, Edith Crigler, Chairman George Timberlake, Kurt Friedenauer, Rev. Charles Collins, Rev. Charles Jenkins, Dr. Debra Ferguson, Julie Biehl, George Hill, Rick Velasquez, Vice Chairman Wayne Straza and Toni Irving. Patricia Connell and Rodney Ahitow participated via teleconference.
Staff Present: James Reynolds, Julie Stremlau, Dick Walsh, Ron Smith, Mary Mucciante, Karrie Rueter, Michael Holmes, Deborah McCarrel and Miguel Millett.
Guests: Rebecca Campbell, Lindsay Bostwick and Jim Bray.
Approval of Minutes
Vice Chair Straza motioned to approve the minutes. Rev. Charles Collins seconded the motion. All in favor, minutes approved.
New Commissioner Updates
There is a contact information sheet in your packets, please complete and give to Jim Reynolds. Once they are all received, a Commission contact list will be created and distributed. Chairman Timberlake announced that the Commission members might need to meet more often than the present quarterly schedule and retreat. There is also a need to establish additional sub-committees, for example a committee to address the research and development of the Senate Bill 1725 report. This committee would report to the Commission. Legislation may not require a committee but we need an avenue to remain informed of current legislation. There is a great deal going on in Illinois and there are extraordinary efforts evolving in juvenile justice.
Commission Overview for New Members
There will be a training held for new and existing Commissioners in February. Location, date and time to be announced. Rick Velasquez asked for a clearer definition of the Commission’s role. Chairman Timberlake and Karrie Rueter briefly explained the role of the Commission. Chairman Timberlake indicated that one major role of the Commission is the expenditure of the $2.5 million dollars Illinois receives annually in Federal funding. In distributing funds, the Commission is creating policy and advancing priorities and strategies. There is an Annual Report and a 3-Year Plan that is generated by this group. The Commission solicits proposals for funds in support of the Annual Plan. The 3-Year plan is data driven by the findings of Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA). The Commission provides funds to ICJIA for that purpose. The idea is to distribute the funds to advance the priorities of the annual plan. The Commission makes recommendations for juvenile justice reform efforts in the state.
There are committees within the Commission. Those committees are the Planning and Grants Committee, Executive Committee and the Disproportionate Minority Contact (DMC) Committee. Commissioners are to inform Chairman Timberlake which committee interests them via the aforementioned form. Chairman Timberlake will be making committee appointments and recommendations based on the expertise and interests of the group. Chairman Timberlake stated there are members of the Commission who are also active in the Pathways Partnership group, Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI), Models for Change, DMC and Balance and Restorative Justice (BARJ). Chairman Timberlake commented that much work has been done with JDAI and there is more work to do.
Rick Velasquez asked if an Executive Committee decision needs the approval of the Commission. Karrie Rueter explained that the Executive Committee has the ability to make decisions for the Commission within certain guidelines as authorized by the Commission due to time constraints, etc. Generally, decisions are final and do not require ratification by the full Commission.
Open Meetings Act – Compliance Issue
Chairman Timberlake read some of the guidelines of the Commission and how it is to function. He asked the members to familiarize themselves with the Open Meetings Act. Karrie Rueter and Kurt Friedenauer further expressed to the group the need for the Commission to follow and understand these meeting rules.
Karrie Rueter informed the Commission members of the recent letter from the Attorney General’s Office regarding a topic addressed at the September Commission meeting. She directed the group to refer to the bottom of page four of the minutes, included in their packets. This topic was discussed at the meeting and voted on. This topic was not on the agenda and therefore any vote or decisions concerning that topic would be considered invalid.
YSMP Data Mining / Evaluation Decision
To address the above issue, Pamela Rodriguez explained the issue being brought before the Commission. Prior to the launch of the Medicaid Pilot, money was allocated by the Commission to the Abatte Group to conduct further analysis (data mining) on an evaluation they had previously conducted on the Juvenile Justice Mental Health Initiative (a precursor to the current Youth Services Medicaid Pilot (YSMP)). The Commission determined that there was more information that could be garnered from that evaluation. The Commission had felt there was a need for further analysis of that initial data in an effort to determine best practices, what interventions work with what populations, so that when the YSMP eventually got underway, the providers would have that knowledge base from which to work. These funds were to be allocated to the Youth Network Council to contract with the Abatte Group for this purpose. Due to contracting issues within DHS, these funds were not allocated for this purpose until mid-August of 2009. At the September Commission meeting the group questioned the need to mine the old data as the YSMP had already been underway three months, or to instead utilize those funds to develop a proposal for data analysis that is current and prospective. There was a lengthy discussion by the group.
Pamela Rodriguez motioned to reallocate the $50,000 from the data mining project to instead ask YNC to develop a process and evaluate current services and data going forward. Vice Chair Straza seconded the motion. Roll called for first part of the motion to approve the reallocation as follows: 10 Yes, 0 No and 5 Abstained. Commissioners Abstaining: Roseanna Ander, Rick Velasquez, Debra Ferguson, Edith Crigler and Rev. Charles Collins. Motion Passed. Pamela Rodriguez requested a vote on the second aspect of this issue. She motioned for YNC to be required to seek input from Commissioners on the development of the RFP for this purpose and authorization from the Executive Committee during the selection process. Vice Chair Straza seconded. Roll called for second part of motion as follows: 15 Yes, 0 No, 0 Abstained. Motion Passed.
Status of Funds Report
Karrie Rueter gave an overview of the budget. The information in the packet gave a brief synopsis of the Title II and Title V grants such as the total award, how much was spent and how much is left.
In response to a question concerning the allocation for the YSMP project, Deborah McCarrel explained that Federal IJJC funds were earmarked for providing direct services to non-Medicaid eligible youth. State GRF dollars were allowed for direct services to Medicaid eligible kids plus the administrative / start-up costs necessary for preparation for Medicaid claiming for this new population. YNC paid for certification to proceed with the pilot.
The Title V grant money was used to fund a Truancy project. These grants expire at the end of this year unless the Commission decides otherwise. Karrie Rueter announced that one of the TRB sites has two DSO violations. The Truancy Program Coordinator will meet with the grantee and review the violations.
Access to Counsel is also scheduled to end this year. This program gave legal representation to youth at the police station 24 hours a day. This program was meant to give youth access to counsel at the stage of arrest, diversion from the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice (IDJJ) and to positively impact DMC efforts. There were concerns this process would irritate law enforcement and push them toward processing the youth. Others recognize the critical role of early access to counsel. Chairman Timberlake stated it is not the Commission’s role, at this time, to evaluate the success or failure of this approach but to provide an overview to the Commission of where the money went and the status of the grant.
Ron Smith gave the compliance report. He explained how compliance monitoring works and that Illinois has federal guidelines it must follow. He described the role of the compliance officers in the facilities. A copy of Ron Smith’s report was in the packet. Public Act 95-1031 dealing with 17 year-olds under Juvenile Jurisdiction was mentioned. Ron Smith explained that if a youth is arrested for a felony the youth is still processed as an adult. It is imperative that Illinois remain in compliance to receive federal funding. The Core Requirements are: Deinstitutionalization of Status Offenders (DSO); Sight and Sound Separation of Adult and Juvenile Offenders (SSS); Jail Removal-Juveniles are not to be securely detained in jails or lock ups. Juveniles are not to be detained over six hours; and Disproportionate Minority Contact (DMC). Decrease the number of minorities that come in contact with the Juvenile Justice System. If we are found out of compliance in any of these areas Illinois can lose 20% of its federal funding.
Ron Smith added there is issues with Public Act 95-1031-17 and how law enforcement can implement this process. For example, if a youth is arrested for a felony and he or she is 17, they are processed as an adult due to the felony charge. If the States Attorney then changes the charge and brings it down to a misdemeanor there is a youth in adult custody thereby creating numerous violations for that one incident as each adult that is not sight or sound separate from the youth is considered a violation.
Chairman Timberlake agreed there are many issues with these new laws but explained there are many people working on interpreting these laws to assist in refining and explaining the process.
DMC Committee Update / Requests
Reverend Charles Collins gave an overview of DMC and talked about the best approaches in dealing with DMC. He stated that over the years DMC looked at different systems and found the Burns Institute Model was the best. The Commission identified four areas in need of change and these were the four original DMC sites.
Miguel Millett, DMC Coordinator gave his report as presented in the DMC Committee Meeting. He announced there will be a DMC Workshop in Oak Brook, IL June 17th. He invited input from the Commission for the June workshop. DMC providers from across the state are invited and will present. There is currently no confirmation on the keynote speakers.
JDAI Committee Update / Requests
Karrie Rueter gave an overview of JDAI. There is currently Commission funding available at YNC to pay for the coordination and support of the JDAI Partners Group and subsequently the JDAI Committee. YNC in the past has used these funds to hire a part-time person to do this work. There is a lot of work to do and a lot of area to cover. The Commission should consider if a part time person is sufficient to carry out the required work as a JDAI committee begins anew within the Commission. The coordinator position will be hired by and work for YNC, however, it is understood that the JJ Specialist, the JDAI Chair, and the Chairman of the Commission would direct the work of the YNC and therefore the coordinator.
Pamela Rodriguez motioned to develop a committee to work with YNC to determine the work necessary under the grant for the JDAI. The committee would work with NYC to develop a job description if necessary and determine if the workload requires a full or part time person. Vice Chair Straza seconded the motion. All in favor, motion passed.
Planning & Grants Committee Update / Requests
Vice Chair Straza presented a summary of the Planning and Grants committee meeting. There was a long discussion over the need and issues with gender specific studies and further planning to address the findings. George Hill motioned to approve the plan to analyze current gender specific issues and partner with Models for Change (MfC) to recommend allocating the maximum Title V funds available for this project.Voted for in Committee so no need for a second. Roll called: 9 Yes, 6 Abstained– Lisa Jacobs, Rick Velasquez, Esther Franco-Payne, George Timberlake, Rev, Charles Jenkins, Toni Irving. 0 No. Motion passed.
CJJ Midwest Regional Conference
Lisa Jacobs announced the Midwest Regional Conference will be held in Chicago June 4th, 5th and 6th. The location is not finalized at this time. She stated this is an opportunity for Illinois to showcase itself. The plan is to have minimal cost. Vice Chairman Straza suggested we move forward and get funding from the Juvenile Crime Enforcement Coalition (JCEC).
Julie Biehl announced there will be a Public Defender Symposium at Northwestern University School of Law on June 4th and perhaps there should be some coordinating between them and the Midwest Regional Conference.
Karrie Rueter explained the Annual Report is being completed at this time. She explained that Patricia Connell has taken the lead in completing the report for this year and that the Commission had decided previously that this report would focus on IDJJ. The report is being drafted and a final draft will be distributed to the members for review and comment. Vice Chair Straza moved that if significant revisions are not requested, once the new Commission has reviewed the report; the Executive Committee have approval to submit the finalized report. Rev. Charles Collins seconded the motion. All in favor, motion passed.
Re-Entry Reports (1725)
A Committee will be established to address this topic.
Title V Grant Revisions / Plan
See P&G section. The Title V grant will need to be revised to reflect the previous decision to shift the focus of these funds from truancy to gender specific programming, more specifically domestic battery issues. This process will begin once decisions are made based on the above.
IDJJ Update / Spending Request
Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice (IDJJ) is requesting a budget revision from the Commission to support their reform effort. These funds have been previously allocated. There was a long discussion concerning this funding change request. The group had many concerns with the study the McArthur group is currently doing and how that may or may not impact this process. Kurt Friedenauer explained that this is not just about IDJJ but a systems issue. This concerns mental health services and how they are provided for the entire youth population, not just those in IDJJ. Assessment and case planning are essential to services to youth. Many commissioners voiced their concerns with voting on an issue they were not fully informed upon. Kurt Friedenauer further explained that IDJJ is in a position where they have to move forward and build on what they have started. Pamela Rodriguez motioned to approve the request. Reverend Charles Collins seconded the motion. Roll called. 4 Yes, 3 No, 8 Abstained-Roseanna Ander, Debra Ferguson, Esther Franco-Payne, Edith Crigler, Chairman Timberlake, Rev. Charles Jenkins, Kurt Friedenauer, Pamela Rodriguez. Motion passed.
2nd Chance Act – Juvenile Re-Entry Grant Opportunity
Karrie Rueter informed the Commission of a grant opportunity concerning Juvenile Reentry. Meetings have begun and DHS will be seeking to acquire this grant in partnership with IDJJ. Commission input is invited. Karrie pointed out that Commissioner Jacobs is participating in the development of this grant with the Departments.
No legislative update given.
ICJIA Reports Update
Lindsay Bostwick gave the ICJIA update. A copy of the 2007 report is in print and the data for the 2008 report is being compiled. A report on the status of current projects was distributed to the group.
Redeploy Illinois Update
No Redeploy update given.
No EUDL update given.
No JCEC update given.
Federal Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice Update
A copy of the Federal Advisory Committee on Juvenile Justice 2009 Annual Report was included in the meeting materials. Rev. Charles Collins announced that new members of this committee must be nominated by the Chair.
Federal Coordinating Council Update
No Federal Coordinating Council Update given.
The Commission meeting is regularly scheduled for the second Wednesday of the month and is held quarterly. The committees meet on one day and the full Commission the next day. March 10th is currently set for the next meeting. Location to be announced. There will be a new Commissioner orientation in February, date and location to be announced. The Commissioners expenses for this meeting will be covered. Please submit your expense forms to Youth Network Council for reimbursement. Jim Reynolds will e-mail the form.
George Hill moved to adjourn the meeting. Lisa Jacobs seconded. Meeting adjourned at 1:48 PM.