FY 2016 Appropriation

The Board of Pardons and Parole (hereafter referred to as the "Board") is the release authority for inmates in the State of Utah. The Board reviews an inmate's performance after the inmate is incarcerated and determines when and under what conditions the inmate may be released after serving the minimum sentence required by law. In addition, the Board reviews violations of release conditions to decide whether an inmate should be sent back to prison.

Funding History
Appropriation Overview

During the 2015 General Session, the Legislature appropriated for Fiscal Year 2016, $4,443,500 from all sources for Board of Pardons and Parole. This is a 0.4 percent increase from Fiscal Year 2015 revised estimated amounts from all sources. The total includes $4,441,300 from the General/Education Funds, an increase of 5.2 percent from revised Fiscal Year 2015 estimates.

Appropriation Adjustments

In addition to statewide compensation and internal service fund cost increases, the following appropriation adjustments were made during the 2015 General Session:

DescriptionOngoingOne-Time Justice Reinvestment Initiative$120,800$0
OngoingOne-TimeFinancing Source
$120,800$0General Fund
Over the past 18 months, leaders in state government collaborated with the Pew Charitable Trusts Public Safety Performance Project and the U.S. Department of Justice to examine and find solutions to Utah's recidivism rate and growing prison population. The Justice Reinvestment Initiative is the broad project to begin implementation of key recommendations from the study. Funding is provided for the Department of Corrections, Board of Pardons and Parole, Governor's Office (Commission on Criminal and Juvenile Justice); additional funding is provided for the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health.
Staff Analysis

For FY 2015, the Board received funding for an additional hearing officer and analyst intended to help process the increasing workload including an added function which came through a statutory change that led to increased expungements which require the review from all 5 Board memebers in addition to staff.

In FY 2013 the Legislature allowed the Board to spend up to $500,000 on "capital equipment or improvements, computer equipment/software, employee/training incentives, and equipment/supplies." The Board reports that since FY 2009 the Board has been requesting authority to carryover ending balances into the new year to fund remodels, technology upgrades and security upgrades at the the Draper prison hearing room. However, when the PRADA committee began their work the Board stopped remodel plans as decisions about relocating the decision will affect the decision to remodel the hearing room at the Draper prison.

During the 2014 General Session the Legislature used $500,000 in nonlapsing balances on other legislative priorities in part due to uncertainty of the future of the hearing room at the Drpaer prison as it may be relocated.

The following chart shows measures that the Board of Pardons and Parole uses to track their performance. These are also reported to the Governor. This reflects performance for the Board of Pardons for Fiscal Year 2014. The measure titled "Timeliness of All Hearing Results" is directly related to the impact on the Department of Corrections budget. The more timely the Board is in conducting hearings, the less time inmates are in prison and are released on parole.

Board of Pardons Performance Measures

Below shows the Board of Pardons and Parole caseload over time.

Board of Pardons Performance Measures

Board of Pardons Measures

Board of Pardons Measures


The Board's authority is outlined in the Utah State Constitution and Utah Code Annotated, Section 77-27 et. seq.

The Board is a separate and independent organization from the Department of Corrections and the Courts. It has full parole, pardon, and commutation authority over all offenders in the jurisdictional custody of the Utah Department of Corrections. The Board makes decisions regarding the release of offenders from prison, sets conditions of parole supervision, orders restitution, and may remit fines subject to statutory guidelines.

Board hearings are held at Board offices, correctional facilities, and jails throughout the state.

Intent Language

HB0003: Item 18

Under Section 63J-1-603 of the Utah Code, the Legislature intends that appropriations of up to $400,000 provided for the Board of Pardons and Parole in Item 30 of Chapter 14 Laws of Utah 2014 not lapse at the close of Fiscal Year 2015. The use of any non-lapsing funds shall be limited to capital equipment or improvements, computer equipment/software, employee/training incentives, equipment/supplies, and costs associated with changing office locations based upon a future possible move of the main Utah prison.

The Board of Pardons is funded primarily from the General Fund. During the 2010 General Session, the Legislature eliminated funding from the Tobacco Settlement Restricted Account which was replaced with funds from the General Fund. A small amount of Dedicated Credits Revenue is generated by the sale of hearing tapes, copies and transcripts.

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COBI contains unaudited data as presented to the Legislature by state agencies at the time of publication. For audited financial data see the State of Utah's Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports.