Public Meeting - June 4, 1997

Minutes of the June 4, 1997

United States Sentencing Commission Business Meeting

The meeting was called to order at 9:43 a.m. by Chairman Richard P. Conaboy in the Judicial Conference meeting rooms. The following commissioners, staff, and guests participated:

  • Richard P. Conaboy, Chairman

  • Michael S. Gelacak, Vice Chairman

  • Michael Goldsmith, Vice Chairman

  • Deanell R. Tacha, Commissioner

  • Michael J. Gaines, Ex Officio Commissioner

  • Mary F. Harkenrider, Ex Officio Commissioner

  • John H. Kramer, Staff Director

  • Paul K. Martin, Deputy Staff Director

  • John R. Steer, General Counsel

  • Joyce Bouwkamp, Network Administrator J

  • eanne Doherty, Communications Assistant

  • Sam Buffone, Ropes and Gray

  • Alan Chaset, Esquire

  • David Gottlieb, Professor, University of Kansas School of Law

  • Tom Hutchison, Representative, Federal Public and Community Defenders

John Kramer introduced the summer interns. Jeremy Schuhmacher and Morgan Browning will work in the Office of Training and Technical Assistance. Todd Bielienski, Matthew Hickman, and Jonathan Ladle will work in the Office of Policy Analysis. Michael Gallacher will work in the Chairman's Office, and Katherine McDonaugh will work in the Office of Administration.

Motion made by Commissioner Tacha to adopt the minutes of the April 28, 1997, business meeting; seconded by Commissioner Gelacak. Passed 3-0. Commissioner Goldsmith was not available via telephone at the time of the vote.

Joyce Bouwkamp and Jeanne Doherty gave a demonstration of the Commission's Internet website ( Ms. Bouwkamp, providing the background information on the Internet, stated that the Commission's web site is accessed approximately 4,000-5,000 times a month. Ms. Doherty, providing an overview of the purpose of the Commission's web site, stated that it helped fulfill the Commission's statutory directive to be a clearinghouse for sentencing information.

She also stated that the Commission's web site received a "hot site" award from USA Today this past August. (Commissioner Goldsmith joins the meeting via telephone.)

Chairman Conaboy, discussing Commission priority areas, divided them into short-, mid-, and long-term issues. In the short-term, he stated that the Commission would resolve several circuit conflicts, complete the Rules of Practice and Procedure, and finish the work on the fraud, theft, and tax issues. Chairman Conaboy stated that mid-term issues, described as requiring more study, included a review of pending juvenile legislation and initiatives and a review of the involuntary and voluntary manslaughter guidelines from the context of proportionality. He stated that long- term issues, described as ongoing projects requiring more intensive study, included criminal history, recidivism research, and drug sentencing. Chairman Conaboy stated that the Commission also is conducting an agency-wide organizational review.

The Commission held an informational hearing on the proposed Rules of Practice and Procedure. Sam Buffone, Alan Chaset, Professor Gottlieb, and Tom Hutchison testified.

Chairman Conaboy adjourned the meeting at 11:20 a.m.