Compiled by the Minnesota Legislative Reference Library
The ombudsman for the department of corrections shall be accountable to the governor and shall have the authority to investigate decisions, acts, and other matters of the department of corrections so as to promote the highest attainable standards of competence, efficiency, and justice in the administration of corrections.
The office of ombudsman for the Minnesota Department of Corrections was created by Governor Wendell Anderson in 1972 on an experimental basis as the Ombudsman Commission, funded by Law Enforcement Assistance Administration grants through the Governor's Crime Commission. In 1973, the legislature established the office as an independent agency of state government known as the Ombudsman for Corrections.
In 2002 the Minnesota Legislature reduced the budget for the Ombudsman for Corrections to $0 for 2003 (see HF351 and 2002 Minn. Laws, Chap. 220 Art. 6 Sec. 4) and in the 2003 Special Session the Minnesota Legislature eliminated the office of the Ombudsman for Corrections (see 2003 Minn. Laws, 1st Spec. Sess., Chap. 2 Art. 5 Sec. 1).
In 2007 the legislature established a Corrections Ombudsman Working Group to be chaired by the Commissioner of Human Rights to consider, among other things, whether the Ombudsman for Corrections should be reinstated. A report detailing the group's findings and recommendations was issued in January 2008.
Agency heads (list may be incomplete): Theartrice Williams, 1972-1982; Robert L. Battle, 1983; John Poupart, 1984; Melvin Brown, Acting Ombudsman for Corrections; Patricia Seleen, January 13, 1992; David Larson, Dec. 9, 1999.
Additional print information on this group may be available in the
Library's collection of agency notebooks. Please contact a librarian for
assistance. The Minnesota Agencies database is a work in progress.