Violent Crime Coordinating Council
Active dates:2010 -
Function: The Council is established to provide guidance related to the investigation and prosecution of gang and drug crimes.
The coordinating council shall develop an overall strategy to ameliorate the harm caused to the public by gang and drug crime within the state of Minnesota. Additionally, the coordinating council shall:
(1) subject to approval by the commissioner of public safety, develop an operating procedures and policies manual to investigate gang and drug crime in a multijurisdictional manner;
(2) identify and recommend a candidate or candidates for statewide coordinator to the commissioner of public safety;
(3) assist the Department of Public Safety in developing grant eligibility criteria and operating an objective and conflict-free grant review application process;
(4) make recommendations to the commissioner of public safety to terminate grant funding for multijurisdictional entities if an entity no longer operates in accordance with subdivision 4, or no longer functions in a manner consistent with the best interests of the state or public;
(5) assist in developing a process to collect and share information to improve the investigation and prosecution of gang and drug offenses;
(6) develop and approve an operational budget for the coordinating council;
(7) develop policies that prohibit the improper use of personal characteristics such as race, color, national origin, gender, or religion to target individuals for law enforcement action, prosecution, or forfeiture action; and
(8) subject to approval by the commissioner of public safety, adopt narrowly tailored, objective criteria and identifying characteristics for use in determining whether individuals are or may be members of gangs involved in criminal activity. The council shall review and update the criteria and characteristics adopted under this clause every two years with the objective to ensure effectiveness and relevance to the accurate identification of subjects actively involved in criminal gang activity. As part of its review process, the council shall obtain input from members of communities that are impacted by criminal gang activity. Before adopting any changes under this clause, the council must submit its recommendations to the commissioner of public safety for approval.
By February 1 of each year, the commissioner of public safety shall submit the following reports to the chairs and ranking minority members of the senate and house of representatives committees and divisions having jurisdiction over criminal justice policy and funding:
(1) a report containing a summary of all audits conducted on multijurisdictional entities under subdivision 4;
(2) a report on the results of audits conducted on data submitted to the criminal gang investigative data system under section 299C.091; and
(3) a report on the activities and goals of the coordinating council.
2010 Minn. Laws, Chapter 383 repeals the Gang and Drug Oversight Council and creates the Violent Crime Coordinating Council. It outlines the membership and duties of the new council. It also outlines the duties of the statewide commander and the commissioner of public safety; directs DPS to certify multijurisdictional entities; and specifies the membership of the entities' governing boards (to include a prosecutor among others). The act dissolves a multijurisdictional entity formed under the current statutory authority for gang and drug task forces effective July 1, 2011. Changes are made to the audit requirements for the Gang Pointer File. Finally, the act expands the purposes of CIBRS and adds "multijurisdictional entity" to the definition of "appropriate agency" for purposes of the forfeiture laws.
The troubles of the Metro Gang Strike Task Force prompted this legislation. The 2010 Minnesota Legislature established the Violent Crimes Coordinating Council to provide guidance related to the investigation and prosecution of gang and drug crime. This new council replaced the Gang and Drug Oversight Council that had been in existence since 2005.
The Violent Crime Coordinating Council was reviewed by the Legislative Commission on Planning and Fiscal Policy (LCPFP) in 2013 as part of their biennial duty required by Minn. Stat. 3.885 Subd. 11. The LCPFP's 2013 Recommendations called for keeping the council.
As of 2013, the Council is composed of 19 voting members, including four citizen members and 15 members representing federal, state and local law enforcement and prosecution agencies.
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