2017 Capitol Forum logoThe 2017 NCSL Capitol Forum will meet at the Hotel del Coronado on Dec. 10-13. Below is the preliminary agenda for the Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee.  

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SUNDAy, Dec. 10, 2017
Time Sessions

3:30-5 p.m.

Orientation -- Standing Committee Legislative Staff Chairs

5:30-7 p.m.
Vista Walk
Opening Reception
MONday, Dec. 11, 2017
7:30-8:45 a.m.

Data-Driven Justice for Front End Reform (Breakfast)
Data collection and analysis has been a key factor in passage of juvenile justice and adult corrections reforms across the country. Unlike statewide corrections data, however, front end justice reform is frequently dependent on local data, the amount and kind of which varies greatly from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, making a comprehensive statewide approach difficult. Learn about efforts underway to collect and disseminate criminal justice data one county at a time.


  • Representative Eric K. Hutchings, Utah


  • David Onek, Senior Strategist, Measures for Justice, California

NCSL gratefully acknowledges the Laura and John Arnold Foundation for their support of this breakfast. 

8:30-9 a.m.

NCSL Steering Committee (Standing Committee Officers)

9-10:30 a.m.

Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee
Occupational Licensing: Meeting Challenges of Specific Population Groups
(Joint with Labor and Economic Development and Health and Human Services committees)

Differences and disparities in occupational licensing laws across states can create barriers for those looking to enter the labor market or relocate across state lines. Certain populations—including military spouses and families, immigrants with work authorization, people with criminal records, and unemployed and dislocated workers—are affected disproportionally by the requirements and variances of occupational licensing. Learn what state lawmakers can do to ease the burdens for these population groups. 


  • Senator Terri Haverly, South Dakota


  • Beth Avery, Staff Attorney, National Employment Law Project, California
  • Suzanne Hultin, NCSL
  • Amy Jerome, Senior Director, Community Development and Programs, Blue Star Families, California
  • Senator Deb Soholt, South Dakota
10:30-11:30 a.m.

Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee 

Collateral Consequences of a Criminal Conviction  (CLE)

The American Law Institute has recently approved revised sentencing articles of the Model Penal Code that include a comprehensive scheme for managing “collateral consequences” of a criminal conviction.  At the same time, in the past five or six years, legislatures in more than half the states have given their courts new authority to mitigate or avoid conviction-related legal restrictions and social stigma. This session will explore current legislative approaches to restoration of rights and opportunities following a criminal conviction.


  • Michael Queensland, Senior Staff Attorney, Office of Legislative Council, Wisconsin


  • Patrick Guinan, Principal Research Analyst, Legislative Counsel Bureau, Nevada
  • John Seibler, Legal Fellow, Institute for Constitutional Government, The Heritage Foundation, Washington, D.C.
11:45 a.m.-1:15 p.m.
Plenary Luncheon
1:30-2:45 p.m.

Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee Luncheon
U.S. Supreme Court Roundup  (CLE)

From cakes to redistricting, hear about the cases before the court’s October term that have state impact. 


  • Joe Ayala, Deputy Legislative Counsel Principal II, Office of Legislative Counsel, California


  • Lisa Soronen, Chief Counsel and Executive Director, State & Local Legal Center, Washington, D.C.
2:45-4 p.m.

Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee
Principles of Effective Juvenile Justice State Policy  (CLE)

Join the NCSL Juvenile Justice Principles Work Group for a discussion of the upcoming report, “Principles of Effective Juvenile Justice Policy.”  Learn about approaches, practices, challenges and successes in enacting cost-effective juvenile justice policies that protect public safety, reduce recidivism and improve outcomes for juveniles, families and communities.



  • Representative Roger Goodman, Washington


  • Senator Patty Pansing Brooks, Nebraska, Co-Chair of the Juvenile Justice Principles Work Group
  • Senator Whitney Westerfield, Kentucky, Co-Chair of the Juvenile Justice Principles Work Group


  • Nina Catalano, Senior Associate, The Pew Charitable Trusts, Washington, D.C.

NCSL gratefully acknowledges The Pew Charitable Trusts public safety performance project for their support of these refreshments.

5-6:30 p.m.
Sundeck Back
Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2017
8-9:30 a.m.
Plenary Breakfast
9:45-11 a.m.

Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee
Civil Asset Forfeiture & Equitable Sharing  (CLE)

Recent federal actions have reignited debate over whether civil asset forfeiture is an effective crime fighting tool or a violation of constitutional rights. Eighty-seven percent of forfeitures were civil between 1997 and 2013, meaning they were executed without a criminal conviction. Laws at the state level continue to increase the oversight, financial regulation and accountability of civil forfeiture practices by state, local and federal agencies. Attend this session to learn the latest.   



  • Senator Gerald Malloy, South Carolina


  • Brad Cates, Esq., Counselor at Law, Liberty Meadows Farm, New Mexico
  • Katy Proctor, Director, Majority Research Staff, House of Representatives, Arizona
11-11:30 a.m.

Law, Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee
Business Meeting / Federal Update

NCSL staff will brief you on the latest congressional legislation and Administration activities that impact states in civil and criminal justice.


  • Senator Gerald Malloy, South Carolina


  • Lucia Bragg, NCSL
  • Susan Parnas Frederick, NCSL
11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.

Immigrant Kids in Court:  Deportation and Child Welfare in Separated Families (lunch will be provided)  (CLE)

(Joint with NCSL’s Task Force on Immigration and the States)

Immigration issues have not died down in 2017. Most recently, Attorney General Jeff Sessions revoked an Obama era policy on DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals). The president has given Congress six months to act on legislation regarding DACA. With the end of DACA coming in 2018, the increase in arrivals of unaccompanied children from Central America, and the increased numbers of deportations, state courts are grappling with the best interest of the child in a mixed immigration status family. Should U.S. citizen children be sent to Mexico with their undocumented parents, left with other family members in the U.S., or put in child welfare systems? Panelists tackle state and federal policy options at stake as family courts determine how to serve children of immigrants.


  • Representative René Garcia, Florida 


  • Victor de León, Deputy Director, Intergovernmental Affairs Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C. 
  • Joanna Fluckey, Senior Direct Representation Attorney, Kids In Need of Defense (KIND), Los Angeles, California
  • Mayra Roffe, Consul for Protection, Consulate General of Mexico, San Diego, California
12:30 p.m.-1 p.m.
NCSL Steering Committee (Standing Committee Chairs)
1-5 p.m.

U.S./Mexico Border: San Ysidro Point of Entry Tour

Briefings and border tour with DHS. Topics may include border management and security; trends in apprehensions, including child migrants/Central American minors; processing/facilitating entry for visitors and business; inspection of trucks/rail; surveillance technology; drug enforcement, and/or human trafficking.


720 East San Ysidro Blvd

San Ysidro, CA 92173

RSVP By 5 PM Eastern, NOVEMBER 10

Transportation will be provided.


Please note that attendees will be free to enjoy San Diego on their own Tuesday evening.
Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017
8-9:30 a.m.
Plenary Breakfast
9:30-10 a.m.
NCSL Capitol Forum Business Meeting
10:15-11:45 a.m. Issue Forums
1-5 p.m. Post-Conference Sessions