Print Сite this

Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance

Introduction

The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles is a government agency that determines the offenders that are fit for parole or mandatory supervision. In addition, it determines the conditions for the release of offenders. The board was officially constituted under a Constitutional Amendment in 1935 (Cole et al., 42). Since its creation in 1925, the board has undergone several changes in its role and membership. For example, its membership has expanded from three to more than eighteen members. On the other hand, some of its roles have been assigned to other government agencies for efficiency.

We will write a
custom essay
specifically for you

for only $16.05 $11/page
308 certified writers online
Learn More

History

The board was constituted in 1925 and it initially comprised only three members. In 1935, the board was furnished with administrative powers to grant parole after the state amended the constitution to accommodate it (Cole et al., 43). The amendments also eliminated the governor’s mandate of awarding clemency, and instead subjected issuance of clemency to recommendations from the board. The board was reorganized to include members appointed by the governor and other state officers (Janda et al., 72). Members were allowed to serve for six-year terms, each term spanning a period of two years. The board was later given the power to grant parole under the condition that the governor assented to the decision (Janda et al., 73). However, the release was not allowed for prisoners serving death sentences. In 1983, further amendments to the constitution expanded the membership of the board to six. In 1989, the board membership was increased to 18 (Cole et al., 44). The board was modified in 1997 to include a policy board that comprised six members whose roles were to draft parole guidelines, assist the board with administrative functions, and review cases that were presented to the board for voting (Cole et al., 42).

Role of the board

The board serves several roles with regard to the release and supervision of offenders. It determines the conditions for the release of prisoners and consequently supervises them upon release (Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles par5). In a case where a parolee disobeys the terms of release, the board takes the necessary disciplinary measures based on the release agreement. In addition, the board gives recommendations to the governor on matters related to clemency (Janda et al., 75).

Parole guidelines system

The board makes administrative decisions guided by a parole guidelines system. The system rates offenders based on the gravity of their crimes (Janda et al., 76). The parole guidelines system involves assessment of offenders’ risk levels and categorization of offenses based on their cruelty. Risk assessments consider factors such as previous criminal cases, incarcerations, and an offender’s behavior while in prison (Cole et al., 47). Other factors include the level of education and age. The board also classifies the severity of offenses on a scale that ranges from low to high. The rank of each crime and the risk level form a score that the board uses to make decisions. The guidelines are revised regularly to reflect the constantly changing policies.

Governance

Rissie Owens is the current chair and presiding officer to the board. The office of the presiding officer is situated in Huntsville and Austin. Austin is the central headquarters. The board has offices in six different locations around the state. The board meets quarterly to administer administrative roles.

Voting process

Three panels that comprise three members each undertake the voting process. Each panel includes a board member and two parole commissioners (Janda et al., 79). However, for severe crimes, voting requires two-thirds majority in order for a prisoner to be granted parole. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice determines eligibility for parole (Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles par3). After approval of eligibility, a prisoner’s file is handed over to the board for voting. The board can either grant release or recommend fulfillment of certain requirements prior to release (Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles par2).

Parole revocation

If an offender violates the terms and conditions, the board has authority to cancel the parole and imprison the offender again, impose more conditions for continuation of probation, or recommend transfer of the offender to a special facility for a given period (Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles par4). However, these decisions are made after the board conducts investigations into allegations of violation of parole rules and requirements.

Get your
100% original paper
on any topic

done in as little as
3 hours
Learn More

Conclusion

The Texas board of Pardons and Paroles is a government agency that grants permission to offenders for parole or probation. The board was created in 1925 and has since undergone many changes. For example, its membership has expanded from 3 to 18. The current chair and presiding officer is Rissie Owens. Voting is one of the roles of the board. It involves 3 panels made up of three members each. Decisions are made after the Texas Department of Justice hands over files of offenders that are eligible for parole or probation. The board has authority to revoke parole in case an offender violates the terms and conditions of release. In such cases, thorough investigations are conducted to ascertain the claims.

Works Cited

Cole, George, Smith Christopher, and DeJong Christina. The American System of Criminal Justice, 13ed. New York: Cengage Learning, 2009. Print.

Janda, Kenneth, Berry Jeffrey, and Goldman Jerry. Challenge of Democracy: Texas Edition: American Government in a Global World, Texas Edition. New York: Cengage Learning, 2008. Print.

Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles: Revised Parole Guidelines 2013. Web.

Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles: Parole/ Mandatory Supervision Information 2013. Web.

Cite this paper

Select style

Reference

StudyCorgi. (2022, May 12). Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance. Retrieved from https://studycorgi.com/texas-board-of-pardons-and-parole-history-role-governance/

Reference

StudyCorgi. (2022, May 12). Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance. https://studycorgi.com/texas-board-of-pardons-and-parole-history-role-governance/

Work Cited

"Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance." StudyCorgi, 12 May 2022, studycorgi.com/texas-board-of-pardons-and-parole-history-role-governance/.

* Hyperlink the URL after pasting it to your document

1. StudyCorgi. "Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance." May 12, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/texas-board-of-pardons-and-parole-history-role-governance/.


Bibliography


StudyCorgi. "Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance." May 12, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/texas-board-of-pardons-and-parole-history-role-governance/.

References

StudyCorgi. 2022. "Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance." May 12, 2022. https://studycorgi.com/texas-board-of-pardons-and-parole-history-role-governance/.

References

StudyCorgi. (2022) 'Texas Board of Pardons and Parole: History, Role, Governance'. 12 May.

This paper was written and submitted to our database by a student to assist your with your own studies. You are free to use it to write your own assignment, however you must reference it properly.

If you are the original creator of this paper and no longer wish to have it published on StudyCorgi, request the removal.