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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Legislative Goal #8 for a Smarter Sex Offender Registry in Virginia – Eliminate the USPS Certified letters for VSP Re-Registration and Implement a Repeating/Rotating Schedule Based on the RSO’s DOB and Last Name


Today’s Goal is #8, Eliminate the USPS Certified letters for Virginia State Police (VSP) Re-Registration and implement a repeating/rotating schedule based on all Registered Sex Offenders (RSO’s) DOB and last name.  

Officially this Goal could be incorporated with upcoming Goal #9, but #9 will cost a lot of money whereas #8 will save the State money. So that is why I have separated them. 

The Virginia State Police could save more than half a million dollars every year for a few years by implementing Goal #8 and then take that savings to put towards Goal #9. Yes, I know that’s not how allocated Budget monies for the VSP works, but the reality is they’d save money for a few years and then reallocate it for modernizing the current system.
 

If you agree with this goal (read it in full below) please ask your one Virginia Delegate and one Senator to Patron/Sponsor a Bill at the next Virginia General Assembly session in January 2018.  Our VA GA. sessions begin the second Wednesday of every January so you should make your request somewhere between May and early-November.  

You could make your request via email, via phone or even schedule a meeting with your Delegate and Senator to discuss the issues that concern you as their constituent and then propose a Bill or two at that meeting.  

If they decline to Patron/Sponsor the Bill, ask them why 

If their concerns can be addressed, address it. If not let them know you’ll be in a touch again in a month or 2, then pick a different goal and ask them to sponsor that new proposal and if they decline, again ask them why 

If their concerns can be addressed, address it. 

If not (they may say I just don’t want to patron that), then select another goal and ask them again in 2+ months to sponsor that Bill, persistence pays off!  

Even if they don’t agree to be a Sponsor they will know:
  1. If they give you a legitimate reason not to Sponsor you will return with facts and data to alleviate those concerns.
  2. If they don’t give a legitimate reason not to Sponsor a Bill you are willing to point out empirical evidence should be the reason laws are proposed not emotion, myth and hate.
  3. That you will continue to return to them asking for Sponsorship as a constituent in their District.
  4. That you are a registered voter (hopefully) and these issues are very important to you and your family members (also voters, hopefully) and so every November they are up for reelection you and your family will be making your selection based on a candidates willingness to listen to reason and data.
You are their constituent, you are a tax-payer and hopefully a voter, they must listen to your concerns and proposals. If you aren’t sure how to address their reason/denial to sponsor a particular Bill that came from my Legislative Goals list, email me at marydavyedevoy@comcast.net with:
  1. The # of Goal you requested
  2. Which VA Legislator you asked
  3. The reason they gave you not to sponsor the Bill
If I can help you find a solution to deliver to your Delegate or Senator, I will. 

Mary Devoy 

 

Goal #8: 

Eliminate the USPS Certified letters for VSP Re-Registration and move to a Repeating/Rotating Schedule based on the RSO’s DOB and last name. 

In 2016 postage for Virginia State Police Sex Offender re-registration letters cost $10.06 per letter, which totaled $589,153.00 for JUST the postage onto 58,564 letters.  

I took the data from my 11 years of VSP Registry costs and figured an estimated amount spent on postage alone for these letters from 2005 to 2016 and my conservative estimate is $8.2 Million. Wow! A waste of money that for some reason the Virginia State Police (VSP) insists on spending because for more than 4 years they’ve squashed/ignored my proposal to switch to a rotating system. 

Without their certified letter in-hand the VSP and local police/sheriff’s will NOT allow Registered Sex Offenders to re-register. 

There are States that set the re-registration months for their RSO’s based on their date-of-birth, their last name and how often they must register. Then the RSO knows year-in-and-year-out when their re-registration is due and it never changes. Whereas in Virginia it’s every 120, 90 or 30 days which means the due dates are NEVER the same. 

For the last 8 years there have been numerous examples of re-registration letters never arriving at their destination (for a myriad of reasons beyond the recipient’s control) or arriving with less than 2 days to comply that have been posted on this blog. Here are just a few http://goo.gl/v3CCBx , http://goo.gl/5KDbVY , http://goo.gl/jtfmIk . Plus, back in 2010 or 2011 the Virginia State Police arbitrarily REMOVED the next re-registration date from every RSO’s VSP online posting so RSO’s can no longer look up when to expect their next letter.  

Virginia could easily switch to a rotating re-registration system with preset re-registration dates. 

Proposed System:
1.    Those with last names beginning with A-L register from the 1st to the 15th of the month.
2.   Those with last names beginning with M-Z register from the 16th to the last day of the month.
3.   The list would be posted on the VSP website.
4.   The list would be handed out during VSP Residency Checks and In-Barrack Re-registrations for 6 to 9 months notifying all RSO’s that re-registration letters will stop going out and the first batch of handouts would have the start date of no more letters being mailed out.
5.   Copies of the list would be stacked on the counter at every VSP Location.
6.   And the next re-registration due date for all RSO’s would be put back on every Offenders VSP On-line Posting.
7.   Some Offenders might re-register back-to back months when it first starts and some may go a bit longer than 6 or 12 months but it will all even out after the first year.
8.  This would save the Commonwealth more than half a million dollars (the postage alone) per year. 

Annual Re-registrations Birth Month
Reporting Month
January
January
February
February
March
March
April
April
May
May
June
June
July
July
August
August
September
September
October
October
November
November
December
December

Semi-Annual Re-registrations Birth Month
Reporting Months
January
January and July
February
February and August
March
March and September
April
April and October
May
May and November
June
June and December
July
January and July
August
February and August
September
March and September
October
April and October
November
May and November
December
June and December
 
Quarterly Re-registrations Birth Month
Reporting Months
January
January, April, July, and October
February
February, May, August, and November
March
March, June, September, and December
April
January, April, July, and October
May
February, May, August, and November
June
March, June, September, and December
July
January, April, July, and October
August
February, May, August, and November
September
March, June, September, and December
October
January, April, July, and October
November
February, May, August, and November
December
March, June, September, and December


For the RSO’s who must re-register every 30 days, just divide them up by last names A-L register from the 1st to the 15th of the month and M-Z register from the 16th to the last day of the month and then they register every month during that time frame. 

Steps Needed to get Virginia to a Rotating System:
1.    The current 30, 90, 180 day and once a year verbiage in Virginia Code § 9.1-904. would need to be removed and the scheduled months based on an RSO’s classification/conviction and their DOB inserted into the code.
2.   Any disabled, elderly or non-driving RSO’s should be able to request that some of their re-registration letters in the year to be mailed or emailed directly to them so that they can return the paperwork (when no photograph is due) via USPS based. Something allowing for non-mobile RSO’s to file through the US Postal Service needs to be added to the code.
3.   Also for the new photograph due dates the every 2 year verbiage in Virginia Code would need to be removed and one of the dedicated re-registration times selected and inserted into the code. Currently the VSP counts this due date as every 730 days even if a re-registration date is no where near it. If letters are no longer mailed out then the photo due date needs to be based on a DOB rotating schedule too.
4.   The Virginia State Police needs to return the ‘next registration due date’ onto every Registrant’s VSP Internet page. Making it more difficult for Virginia’s RSO to comply with their restrictions and regulations isn’t making our communities safer.