Legislator, Gov. Fallin At Impasse Over Criminal Justice Reform Survey
OKLAHOMA CITY - The latest sticking point in the political battle to reform Oklahoma's criminal justice system is a survey created by an Oklahoma legislator.
Rep. Scott Biggs (R-Chickasha) is accused of stonewalling several criminal justice reform bills in the state House this past session, bills that Biggs says are fundamentally flawed in that they fail to define what constitutes violent crimes and what constitutes non-violent crimes.
This last session, he put together a survey asking 150 public policy leaders to categorize crimes as violent, non-violent or a more general "danger to the public," a survey that drew criticism from local chamber leaders, some law enforcement and Gov. Mary Fallin, who sent Biggs a letter of rebuke.
Biggs is a former prosecutor whose efforts are supported by district attorneys across the state, prosecutors who argue that true criminal justice reform is a much more nuanced process and should reasonably take longer than one legislative session to complete.
News 9 Political Director Scott Mitchell talked to Biggs on Saturday's edition of "Hot Seat" and will be discussing the rift between Biggs and Gov. Fallin on "Your Vote Counts," which can be seen at 7:45 a.m. Sunday.
In the meantime, we've attached both Biggs' survey and the instructions that accompanied it for your examination..