About
The U.S. Sentencing Commission is an independent agency in the judicial branch of government created by the Sentencing Reform Act of 1984. Congress enacted the SRA in response to widespread disparity in federal sentencing, ushering in a new era of federal sentencing through the creation of the Commission and the promulgation of federal sentencing guidelines.
Mission

The Commission's principal purposes are to:

  1.   establish sentencing policies and practices for the federal courts, including guidelines to be consulted regarding the appropriate form and severity of punishment for offenders convicted of federal crimes;
  2.   advise and assist Congress and the executive branch in the development of effective and efficient crime policy; and
  3.   collect, analyze, research, and distribute a broad array of information on federal crime and sentencing issues, serving as an information resource for Congress, the executive branch, the courts, criminal justice practitioners, the academic community, and the public.
The Commission In Focus
This brief video gives an overview of the U.S. Sentencing Commission. Learn about the Commission’s role in the judicial branch of the federal government, as well as the agency’s makeup and mission.
2020 Annual Report
 

 

Commissioners
Acting Chair
JUDGE CHARLES R. BREYER
Ex Officio Commissioner
PATRICIA K. CUSHWA
Ex Officio Commissioner
Jonathan J. Wroblewski
Organization
The Commission consists of seven voting members appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate, each serving six-year terms.
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Advisory Groups
The Commission is advised by four standing advisory groups representing the views of practitioners, probation officers, victims, and tribal lands.
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Federal Courts
The federal sentencing guidelines are used across the country in every one of the 94 judicial districts and 12 circuit courts. Federal judges are required to review and calculate the guidelines as they contemplate and impose an equitable sentence.

 

News
  • May 2021

    The Office of Education and Sentencing Practice periodically releases a newsletter, providing information on current Commission activities, research findings, proposed guideline amendments, training opportunities, and guideline application and legal issues. 

  • March 2021

    Episode 1: An Interview with Staff Director Ken Cohen

  • March 2021

    A list of remarks, speeches, testimony, letters, and congressional submissions.