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Sex offender program efficiencies

Published (5/20/2011)
By Hank Long
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A bill that would modify existing statutes to improve efficiencies in the state’s sex offender program was approved May 13 by the House Ways and Means Committee and sent to the House floor.

Sponsored by Rep. Mary Kiffmeyer (R-Big Lake), HF1478 contains several provisions related to the civil commitment process for registered sex offenders.

Its companion, SF1287, sponsored by

Rep. David Hann (R-Eden Prairie), awaits action by the full Senate.

Some of the provisions in the bill include:

• expansion of existing procedures for voluntary re-admission to a secure facility for a civilly committed sex offender who has been provisionally discharged;

• strengthening and clarification of state agency and law enforcement authority roles in apprehending and returning a civilly committed sex offender who is absent without authorization;

• streamlining of sexually dangerous person and sexually psychopathic personality commitment procedures to a single hearing, instead of two;

• modification of the community public notification, which ensures that community notification of the broadest scope available under the law is used when a civilly committed sex offender is going to reside in the community; and

• directing the Department of Human Services to work with the Revisor’s Office to develop legislation next session that would reorganize sex offender civil commitment statutes so they are clear and distinguished from statutes that pertain to other civil commitment categories.

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