SB295: Parole interviews; allows videoconferencing.

SENATE BILL NO. 295
Offered January 9, 2008
Prefiled January 8, 2008
A BILL to amend and reenact § 53.1-154 of the Code of Virginia, relating to parole interviews; allow videoconferencing.
Patron-- Puller

Referred to Committee on Rehabilitation and Social Services

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:

1.  That § 53.1-154 of the Code of Virginia is amended and reenacted as follows:

§ 53.1-154. Times at which Virginia Parole Board to review cases.

The Virginia Parole Board shall by regulation divide each calendar year into such equal parts as it may deem appropriate to the efficient administration of the parole system. Unless there be reasonable cause for extension of the time within which to review and decide a case, the Board shall review and decide the case of each prisoner no later than that part of the calendar year in which he becomes eligible for parole, and at least annually thereafter, until he is released on parole or discharged, except that upon any such review the Board may schedule the next review as much as three years thereafter, provided there are ten years or more or life imprisonment remaining on the sentence in such case. Notwithstanding any other provision of this article, in the case of a parole revocation, if such person is otherwise eligible for parole, the Board shall review and decide his case no later than that part of the calendar year one year subsequent to the part of the calendar year in which he was returned to a facility as provided in § 53.1-161. Thereafter, his case shall be reviewed as specified in this section. The Board, in addition, may review the case of any prisoner eligible for parole at any other time and may review the case of any prisoner prior to that part of the year otherwise specified. In the discretion of the Board, interviews may be conducted in person or via videoconferencing by the voting members of the Board or its representatives, provided that interviews by any representatives are recorded in full via electronic means that can be reviewed by the voting members, and may be either public or private.