Chief State’s Attorney’s Meeting

Minutes of the Meeting of April 15, 2019
Office of the Chief State’s Attorney
Rocky Hill, Connecticut

Chief State’s Attorney Kevin T. Kane called the meeting to order at 12:42 p.m.

In attendance were: Deputy Chief State’s Attorneys Kevin D. Lawlor and John J. Russotto; State’s Attorneys Michael A. Gailor (Middlesex), Matthew C. Gedansky (Tolland), Gail P. Hardy (Hartford), Anne F. Mahoney (Windham), Maureen Platt (Waterbury), Brian W. Preleski (New Britain), Stephen J. Sedensky III (Danbury) and John C. Smriga (Fairfield) and Supervisory Assistant State’s Attorney Dawn Gallo (Litchfield).

Also present: Executive Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Austin, Jr., legislative liaison Wilfred Blanchette, Jr., and Communications and Legislative Specialist Mark A. Dupuis.

State’s Attorney Platt made a motion to accept the minutes of the March 18, 2019 meeting. State’s Attorney Mahoney seconded the motion and it passed with no opposition.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Lawlor reported on a request concerning an amicus curiae brief in US v. Basey. The Appellate Bureau is reviewing the matter; Senior Assistant State’s Attorney Louis Luba is assessing practical implications.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Russotto reported the Division is awaiting legislative action on the next biennial budget. Feedback to date has been positive. The Division is pressing its requests for 13 positions for information technology/paralegal duties in the Judicial Districts and additional prosecutors to continue the Early Screening and Intervention pilot program.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Russotto reported the “roll-out” of the Case Management System (CMS) will begin on a pilot basis in the Middlesex Judicial District in August, coinciding with the implementation of the Connecticut Information Sharing System (CISS). Each Judicial District needs to designate a “business champion” to lead CMS implementation. Marc Pelka, Under Secretary for Criminal Justice Policy and Planning in the Office of Policy and Management, has arranged for the Urban Institute to provide assistance with regard to the use of data by prosecutor’s offices.

Chief State’s Attorney Kane and legislative liaison Wilfred Blanchette, Jr., reported on pending legislation. The Joint Committee on Judiciary approved several bills of concern to the Division, and the Division continues to work for modifications. Assistant State’s Attorney Brenda L. Hans, Traffic Safety Resource Prosecutor, met with administration officials to discuss law enforcement concerns regarding the proposed legalization of “recreational marijuana.”

State’s Attorney Mahoney reported for the Training Committee on upcoming trainings. Executive Assistant State’s Attorney Austin reported on a “train the trainer” program being developed with regard to implicit bias. The Annual Professional Development Conference will include the ethics training required for all attorneys under the Practice Book.

Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Russotto reported for the Management Committee. The University of Connecticut Department of Public Policy will assist in conducting and compiling results of SWOT (Strengths/Weaknesses/Opportunities/Threats) surveys for those State’s Attorneys still developing management plans.

Several prosecutors have participated in the “Developing Leadership Skills” management training. The Division hopes to expand the offerings to additional supervisors and potential supervisors. Additional details will be released at the June 13, 2019, Annual Professional Development Conference for Prosecutors.

State’s Attorney Gailor reported that the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection Forensic Science Laboratory is implementing electronic distribution of test results. Each office should designate at least one person as point of contact to receive and distribute results. The ultimate goal is to have the results of all testing distributed electronically.

State’s Attorney Russotto reported on continuing discussions in the Management Committee on the evaluation and assessment of State’s Attorneys on a more frequent basis than only prior to the consideration of their reappointment. The State’s Attorneys are asked to share their input.

State’s Attorneys Sedensky and Hardy reported on plans for “table top” training exercises, including possible locations and number of attendees.

State’s Attorney Hardy reported that the National District Attorneys Association (NDAA) would like to see greater participation at its Summer Conference. Deputy Chief State’s Attorney Russotto will explore the possibility.

There being no further business, State’s Attorney Platt made a motion to adjourn. State’s Attorney Sedensky seconded the motion and it passed unanimously. The meeting adjourned at 2:04 p.m.