Parnell's office was kind enough to write a personal response to a letter vetting my earlier concerns about the thrust of their proposal. It's obvious that the staffer read, and understood my comments, so I'll share his reply without any editorial.
Thank you for writing to Governor Sean Parnell. I have been assigned to provide a response. It is very important to hear from the public on such important an issue as combatting sexual assault and domestic violence.
The legislation introduced by the Governor is very important. Among several changes, the bill would close loopholes in current law that allow convicted sex offenders to move to Alaska and avoid registration in certain instances.
As to increasing penalties for sexual assault or domestic violence, there is another effect, physically isolating the offender from the victim and society in general by putting the person in jail. Such seperation gives the victim and society protection from an individual who has been found guilty by a jury of his or her peers of hurting another person.
I would also assure you that we are looking at all options for reducing sexual assault and domestic violence, and are not solely focused on punishment. Prevention is just as important. The Governor's proposed budget proposes spending millions of dollars for substance abuse, anger management, treatment, job training efforts, etc., for all Alaskans.
Deputy Chief of Staff
Office of the Governor