Sentencing Commission Retains Tribal Issues Advisory Group

The US Sentencing Commission seeks applications by October 24, 2016, for a standing advisory group that consults with Indian Country regarding federal sentencing issues. It will also study the findings and recommendations contained in the May 2016 Report, and consider amendments to the Guidelines Manual.

Download: Notice (PDF), Charter (PDF)

Previous posts: Final Report

Tribal Issues Advisory Group’s Final Report on Impact of Sentencing Guidelines

Link to final report (PDF) here.

Link to previous coverage here.

Some key recommendations:

      • Adding commentary to guide when tribal court convictions may be considered for a possible upward departure in the defendant’s criminal history category.
      • Establishing a standing advisory group on tribal issues to assist the Commission on changes to the Guidelines impacting American Indian defendants, to advise on and assist in tribal consultation, and to form the basis for a new TIAG when appropriate.
      • Creating a process for the collection of better data on federal court sentencing to allow for study of the protection order provisions of the Guidelines and analysis of sentencing disparity concerns as detailed herein;
      • Considering the recommendations of other working groups regarding juvenile offenders, including possibly collapsing sentencing zones A, B, and C into a single zone.

Pascua Yaqui Review of the Impact of Sentencing Guidelines on Tribal Communities

Download comments here.

The United States Sentencing Commission’s Tribal Issues Advisory Group visited the Reservation last week.  The issue they were investigating was whether there was disparity between a tribal member sentenced in federal court, when compared to a similarly situated defendant in state court. The information and data collected over the past year showed no disparity for the Tribe.

U.S. Sentencing Commission Tribal Issues Advisory Group

From Mary Smith at NABA:

The Sentencing Commission recently published a Federal Register notice seeking comment on the possible formation of a Tribal Issues Advisory Group.  Links to that notice and a new publication on Native American federal offenders are below:

The group is soliciting comments widely and would welcome comment from the Native American community.