Events & Announcements

Vol. 95 Emerging Scholar Award: Request for Submissions

The Denver Law Review is pleased to announce the 2017 Emerging Scholar Award. This exclusive publication opportunity is open to all scholars who (1) have received their J.D. as of March 1, 2017, (2) have not yet accepted a tenure-track teaching position, and (3) have not held a full-time teaching position for more than three years.

The selected recipient will receive an award of $500, and the Denver Law Review will publish the winning entry in Issue 1, Volume 95, scheduled for early 2018.

Click here for more information.


2017 Symposium – Justice Reinvestment: The Solution to Mass Incarceration?

Feb. 2 & 3, 2017 - Justice Reinvestment: The Solution to Mass Incarceration? The Denver Law Review presents its annual symposium on whether justice reinvestment initiatives are effective tools to end mass incarceration.

Registration is now open. Pending up to 14 CLEs.


Denver Law Review Announces 2016 Emerging Scholar Award Winner

The Denver Law Review is pleased to announce that it has selected Adam Feldman, a Ph.D. student at the University of Southern California, for the 2016 Emerging Scholar Award.

Click here for more information.


DLR Online Proudly Presents a Special Issue, Navigating the Nuance: Pressing Issues in M&A Law and Practice

DLR Online's new special issue, Navigating the Nuance: Pressing Issues in M&A Law and Practice, features eleven student articles covering recent topics in mergers and acquisitions. This is the first collaboration between the Denver Law Review, DLR Online, and Professor Michael R. Siebecker. 
 
Prior special issues from the DLR Online can be found here.

DLR Online Proudly Presents a Special Issue: The Shareholder Proposal Rule and the SEC

DLR Online's new special issue, The Shareholder Proposal Rule and the SEC, features eleven student articles covering Rule 14a-8, the epicenter of the shareholder rights movement. The issue represents the continued collaboration between the Denver Law Review, DLR Online, and Professor J. Robert Brown, Jr. 
 
Explore a thoughtful introduction to the issue by Professor Brown. Prior special issues from the DLR Online can be found here.

DLR Online Proudly Presents a Special Issue 

Taking it to the Next Level: Your Course, Your Program, Your Career

DLR Online's new special issue, Taking it to the Next Level: Your Course, Your Program, Your Career, features three articles by legal writing Professors who share their experiences in the classroom.

 


Vol. 94 Emerging Scholar Award: Request for Submissions

The Denver Law Review is pleased to announce the 2016 Emerging Scholar Award. This exclusive publication opportunity is open to all scholars who (1) have received their J.D. as of March 1, 2016, (2) have not yet accepted a tenure-track teaching position, and (3) have not held a full-time teaching position for more than three years.

The selected recipient will receive an award of $500, and the Denver Law Review will publish the winning entry in Issue 1, Volume 94, scheduled for early 2017.

Click here for more information.


We've Changed Our Name!

The Denver University Law Review is now the Denver Law Review, and the DULR Online is now DLR Online.


Volume 93 Staff Announced

The Denver Law Review is excited to announce the Volume 93 Staff. Please join us in congratulating them in this accomplishment and supporting them in continuing the fine tradition of the Denver Law Review. Please click here to view the masthead.

Please click here to view the photo masthead.


Denver Law Review Announces Emerging Scholar Award

The Denver Law Review is pleased to announce that it has selected Kate Sablosky Elengold, Practitioner-in-Residence at American University's Washington College of Law, for the Emerging Scholar Award of Volume 93.

Click here for more information!


 

Subscriptions and Submissions

For information on how to subscribe to the Denver Law Review, please click here.

For the guidelines on how to submit an article to the Denver Law Review, please click here.

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Monday
Mar272017

Symposium Note: Implementing Justice Reinvestment at the State Level

[PDF]

Alec Martinez*

Alternative incentive structures and competing economic interests served as primary themes in the Denver Law Review's symposium panel discussing the implementation of justice reinvestment at the state level. In spite of the unfortunate absence of Denise Maes of the ACLU of Colorado, a two-person panel consisting of Professor David Ball of Santa Clara Law and Liz Ryan, president and CEO of Youth First!, proved to be among the most salient presentations in this year's symposium. Moderated by Hannah Proff of Johnson, Brennan & Klein, each panelist discussed obstacles to justice reform and opportunities for reform at the state level.

Professor Ball started the presentation with a discussion of his forthcoming article to be published in the Denver Law Review, which challenges current conceptions of financing in the criminal justice system. Specifically, Prof. Ball likens our current system to the healthcare industry and the "fee-for-service system," in which healthcare providers are compensated not on the basis of successful outcomes, but on services performed. This approach, Ball argues, is an economic distortion that leads to increased costs without necessarily improving the health of patients. Generally, Prof. Ball noted, the same is true in the criminal justice system. Because states generally pay for incarceration of convicted individuals, local justice officials tend to commit individuals to the state prison system instead of incurring the costs of mitigating underlying problems that led the individual to the criminal justice system. In response to a question addressing lack of treatment of Colorado's sex offenders,[1] Ball went a step further to note that, in most cases, treatment during incarceration is highly ineffective at best and, citing Kansas v. Crane,[2] suggested that treatment is often nonexistent. In response to these problems, Ball suggested a need to gauge and assess the returns on the economic investment into the criminal justice system.

Ms. Ryan quickly followed suit by assessing the economic justifiability of youth incarceration. Citing a 2014 report by the Justice Policy Institute,[3] she suggested costs, disparate impacts, and collateral consequences of juvenile incarceration couldn't justify states' financial investment into the system. As opposed to punitive responses to delinquent behavior, which often lead juveniles into the adult criminal justice system, Ms. Ryan argued an approach that allows juveniles to correct their mistakes and become productive members of society is a more economically rational approach. Ms. Ryan noted, however, that obstacles to such an approach are formidable. In describing her ideal justice reinvestment legislation, she suggested closing all youth prisons. Doing so, however, would require taking on the institutions themselves, the communities in which they are located, and the legislators that respond to the economic cries of the community. In Ms. Ryan's home state of Virginia, 31% of the Department of Juvenile Justice's annual budget goes solely to the Beaumont and Bon Air Juvenile Correctional Centers, amounting to more than $64 million that flows into local communities.[4] Thus, closure of these facilities would require substantial steps to assure local communities that they could restructure their economies absent the stimulation provided by the juvenile correction centers. In response to these issues, Ms. Ryan suggested the possibility that local jurisdictions be given the closed facility with additional funding to repurpose its use in other economically viable manners.

Each panelist had a number of suggestions for alternative incentive structures to help remedy the inefficiencies of the criminal justice system in its current state. Prof. Ball made reference to pilot programs in King County, Washington and Los Angeles County, California, in which police officers are provided incentives for transporting them to their respective county's social services department, as opposed to the typical law enforcement approach that incentivizes arrests.[5] Ms. Ryan echoed this approach, suggesting a system of disincentives for school police officers who choose to detain and process youth in the juvenile criminal justice system while providing bonuses to officers that instead choose to divert youth into programs for treatment. At the judicial level, Prof. Ball further noted that states such as Colorado and Missouri have in place systems that allow judges to consider costs of incarceration in sentencing proceedings. This allows a sort-of cost-benefit analysis in making sentencing determinations. Prof. Ball argued, however, that this is merely a "first step," as it fails to consider efficacy to incarceration itself.

Although convincing in their arguments that the criminal justice system is in desperate need of reform, Prof. Ball and Ms. Ryan's panel discussion made clear that considerably complex and numerous obstacles stand in the way of reform. Each topic of discussion suggested strong economic and ideological dependency on mass incarceration at the state level. At the conclusion of panel discussion, Ms. Proff addressed the panelists on their views of potential changes to the criminal justice system in the Trump presidential era. Underlying each response were recognitions of substantial threats and calls for diligence and ongoing consideration of how Americans conceptualize public safety in order to promote a more effective criminal justice system.


* Alec Martinez is a Staff Editor on the Denver Law Review and a J.D. Candidate 2018 at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law.

[1] Christopher N. Osher, Colorado Wasting as much as $44 Million a Year in Sex-Offender Program, Audit Says, Denv. Post, Jan. 17, 2017.

[2] 543 U.S. 407 (2002).

[3] Justice Policy Inst., Sticker Shock: Calculating the Full Price Tag for Youth Incarceration (2014).

[4] Virginia Department of Juvenile Justice, Budget (2016), http://www.djj.virginia.gov/pages/admin/budget.htm

[5] City of Seattle, Study: Innovative Seattle/King County Diversion Program Shows Success, Seattle Crime News, http://spdblotter.seattle.gov/2015/04/08/study-innovative-seattleking-county-diversion-program-shows-success/  (last visited Feb. 6, 2017).