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May 24, 2007

A few quick notes from the annual FSG conference

I've had a long and fun day at the National Seminar on the Federal Sentencing Guidelines in Salt Lake City (details in this event brochure).  I moderated a panel on departures and variances, and all of the speakers had lots of great (competing) insights about post-Booker realities (especially in light of recent Commission amendments).  The morning plenary sessions were not too eventful because they mostly consisted of US Sentencing Commissioners talking about past and planned USSC activities.  However, here are a few notable items from today's activities:

1.  No one knows quite what to expect from the Supreme Court in Claiborne and Rita, and most folks are even afraid to make predictions (though USSC Vice-Chair Ruben Castillo promised that the guidelines are "here to stay").

2. USSC Chair Ricardo Hinojosa seemed disappointed that I did not ask a question during the first plenary session.

3. The USSC is clearly working very hard to keep Congress informed and at ease about various sentencing developments, and no serious Booker fix is in the works.

4. The House has plans for lots of hearings in the coming months on issues like mandatory minimums, "what works" to reduce crime, and on possibly expanding good time credits.

May 24, 2007 at 07:28 PM | Permalink


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